P. Edronkin

Mount Plataforma (IV).

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Once you reach the area which contains higher vegetation (Valdivian forests), the job becomes much easier and pleasant.

After approximately two hours you will find again the water stream that you crossed earlier, and perhaps you will feel tempted to camp right there, but really, I recommend you to hold on and walk for another hour or so because the trail will lead you to a small lake where there is quite a view.

There, in the pass between Mount Tres Picos and Mount Plataforma, you will enjoy the combination of a lake, snowfields, forests and the two mountains.

The pass leads to a valley which ends at Cholila Lake, at about 40 km from there, and where Butch Cassidy used to hide for a few years at the end of the nineteenth century. The view is spectacular, but watch out: avalanches and rock slides occur almost daily there, so stay around the lake, which is safe.

One of the remarkable aspects of Cerro Plataforma is that there, well over 1.000 m above the sea level, you will find many fossils identical to those found at Loma del Medio, near El Bolson City, 70 km to the north.

Apparently, before the Andes rose from the ocean about twelve million years ago, the area in question was similar to the Caribbean, both in morphology as well as climate. Thus, land and sea ecosystems coexisted for quite a long time and fossil samples from both environments are to be found there.

Mount Plataforma.
View of the NE wall and the pass to Cholila Lake.

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