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BOLIVIA

"CHACALTAYA BOLIVIA"

 

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Chacaltaya superlatives: The highest ski area in the world. The only ski area in South America outside of Chile and Argentina. The most equatorial ski area in the world. The oldest ski lift in South America. The fastest surface lift in the world. The northernmost ski area in South America. The only ski area in South America with a season that corresponds to that of North America. The most difficult lift to load in the world. Chacaltaya.
Chacaltaya's lift ascends the middle of a year-round snowfield high above the elevated altiplano of Bolivia. The top of the mountain is near 5,570m (18,275ft), and the lift ascends to a point perhaps 150m (500ft) below the summit. The slope itself is mostly intermediate, but combine the slope with the rarified air and the ski area suddenly rates advanced. When the complexities involved in loading Chacaltaya's antiquated lift are factored in, this ski area is for experts only.

Geography
Chacaltaya is located in Bolivia's Cordillera Real. Although it is a year-round snowfield, the lift is generally open only during the rainy season. Skiing can be found as early as mid-September though. During the colder dry season, the snow is too hard and icy for safe skiing. Even in-season, the lift and bus only operate on weekends.

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