El Chaltén © Francisco Javier Negroni Rodriguez

El Chaltén © Francisco Javier Negroni Rodriguez

Photographer name: Francisco Javier Negroni Rodriguez

From: Santiago, Chile

Age: 45

Photo titleEl Chaltén 

Photo location: El Chaltén, Argentina

Date photo taken: March 04, 2019 

Story behind the photo:  An hour before taking this photograph I was walking along the trails that surround the beautiful rock formation known as El Chaltén in Argentina, the day was very cloudy, apparently luck was not with me on this adventure.

The climate in Patagonia is somewhat unpredictable, it changes every moment and the wind is so strong that it quickly moves the clouds. Only at times could the figure of the massif be distinguished.

My hope was focused on getting to a place from where I could wait very patiently for the weather to help me and give me a window of good weather at sunset to be able to take some photos, but nature surprised me...

It was incredible! Only for a moment the clouds allowed me to see El Chaltén and to my surprise there was a spectacular and brilliant lenticular cloud with a beautiful and perfect figure that I had never seen.

It was a unique and unrepeatable gift that sometimes reminds me of how lucky I am to be a photographer and to be able to visit different places to show the world these natural and climatic beauties. 

Weather caption: Clouds that are ‘lens-shaped’ or look like ‘flying saucers’ are known as lenticular clouds. They are quite rare and are often mistaken for UFOs. Lenticular clouds form when stable, moist air flows over a mountain, such as Chaltén, which can set off a series of large-scale standing waves downwind. If the temperature at the top of the wave crest drops to the dew point, condensation can occur, forming cloud. As the air then moves back down into the wave trough, the temperature rises and the cloud evaporates back into water vapour. This condensation and evaporation within the wave crests and troughs results in the lenticular clouds we see.

What were the technical challenges?

Changes of light

Technical details:

Camera                      NIKON D600

Lens model               80.0-200.0 mm f/2.8

Shutter speed           1/1600

Aperture                     f/6.3

Focal length              86 mm

35mm equivalent      86 mm

ISO                             100