Peru & Bolivia
"Along with three friends we headed to whole new places for the first time in my life - Bolivia and Peru. I started the journey without knowing what to expect. These countries are not as often photographed as other places in Europe (except places like Machu Picchu) so it was quite hard to research any destinations. Also, we planned the route to go out and hike as much as possible instead of just ticking off photo spots.
Furthermore these places have been the first countries where I faced serious altitude. 90% of the time we stayed higher than 3,800m, reaching a maximum altitude during our trip of 5,600m. Constant headache, a lack of appetite and thirst and fatigue were the symptoms we had to fight with - a battle against our own bodies.
All these feelings while being surrounded in one of the most fascinating landscape I’ve ever been in gave me shivers down my spine.
It reminded me how great nature is as an artist and how much inspiration you can get from just being surrounded by its beauty. The highlight of this trip was a six day hike we did in the last week after being well acclimatized - the Cordillera Huayhuash. Known as one of the best alpine treks in the world, this hike brought us past turquoise lakes, high altitude passes and snowcapped peaks. A dramatic landscape that could not have been more brutal: we faced subzero temperatures, snowstorms, hail, and tremendous downpour and burning sun." (Daniel Ernst)
"First I have to say that I am super grateful to have the opportunity to travel at all.
Travelling for me was and still is the best school in the world. It is eye opening in a lot of ways.
One lesson it taught me is that people do think differently wherever you go, but at the same time we all have the same basic desires and just want to have a life in peace. We didn’t have too much time to connect with the locals in Bolivia and Peru due to our schedule but somehow I felt the kindness of these people with every small encounter.
Shooting the peaks with the M.Zuiko 40-150mm 1:2.8 PRO lens was my absolute favourite activity on the trek. Having an equivalent of a 300mm lens this fast with you all the time is just amazing. It is so light and compact for what you get - a real game changer! I often focus on details of the mountains I shoot. I want to get a special crop of just a part of it and this lens helps me so much with that approach. It’s sharp wide open which is essential when shooting early in the morning and/or after sunset. An all in all superb lens! The whole OM-D system is totally reliable so that I carried the camera outside at all times. Heavy rain or snow fall didn't harm the OM-D E-M1 Mark II or any of the M-Zuiko PRO lenses. Everything kept working and I didn’t miss a shot. Perfect for an outdoor adventure photographer in every environment!" (Roman Königshofer)
"And once again it was time to pack my bags, charge my batteries and leave to another amazing place on earth with my Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II.
Back to South America, back to some of the most unique landscapes I have ever seen. Ever since I have visited South America and especially Peru I wanted to come back. This country has so much to offer, from vast beaches and sand dunes, wild and remote jungles to some of the highest mountains on the continent.
For me travelling is all about challenging yourself, pushing myself to the limits and getting me outside of my comfort zone.
You’ll discover how resourceful you are when you are exposed to new places, people or cultures. And that could be everything; maybe it’s just by ordering a meal when you don’t speak the local language. The way you handle situations like this also gives you insights about who you are. You will come home knowing yourself better and with a fresh perspective of what you want in life and maybe it also shows you a new appreciation for life." (Hannes Becker)