Faustino Barrientos has spent the greater part of his 81 years in complete solitude and isolation. Since 1965 he’s worked as a gaucho—the horse-riding ranchers and shepherds of the harsh southern swath of Chile and Argentina known as Patagonia. For most of his life, Faustino’s sole human contact has occurred once every two years, when he herds his cattle to the nearest town to sell.The gaucho lifestyle, which essentially consists of hunting and herding, has remained constant since the colonial era. To say these guys are lonesome is an understatement—this isn’t like moving to the country and starting a blog about local varieties of heirloom carrots. But Faustino wasn’t always alone. He was raised on the shores of Lake O’Higgins in a place known as Once Hermanos, which is named after his family of 11 brothers and sisters. Over the years, the siblings moved away one by one. Then their parents died, their houses were burned down by vengeful neighbors, and the land was sold. Faustino moved to Argentina, traveling the country and honing the skills that would allow him to eventually return to Lake O’Higgins and live off the land for the next 46 years.
Continue: The loneliest cowboy in the world.

Faustino Barrientos has spent the greater part of his 81 years in complete solitude and isolation. Since 1965 he’s worked as a gaucho—the horse-riding ranchers and shepherds of the harsh southern swath of Chile and Argentina known as Patagonia. For most of his life, Faustino’s sole human contact has occurred once every two years, when he herds his cattle to the nearest town to sell.

The gaucho lifestyle, which essentially consists of hunting and herding, has remained constant since the colonial era. To say these guys are lonesome is an understatement—this isn’t like moving to the country and starting a blog about local varieties of heirloom carrots. But Faustino wasn’t always alone. He was raised on the shores of Lake O’Higgins in a place known as Once Hermanos, which is named after his family of 11 brothers and sisters. Over the years, the siblings moved away one by one. Then their parents died, their houses were burned down by vengeful neighbors, and the land was sold. Faustino moved to Argentina, traveling the country and honing the skills that would allow him to eventually return to Lake O’Higgins and live off the land for the next 46 years.

Continue: The loneliest cowboy in the world.

Notes:

  1. visceralthoughts reblogged this from vicemag and added:
    Solitude.
  2. jukubee reblogged this from vicemag
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  10. crocodileblackpelvis reblogged this from vicemag and added:
    My family in Argentina has an 11,000 acre ranch manned by a single gaucho. I don’t know he avoids madness.
  11. n-nja reblogged this from vicemag
  12. beardedninjas reblogged this from vicemag
  13. bradleyjoelgarcia reblogged this from vicemag and added:
    The loneliest cowboy in the world.
  14. canwetango reblogged this from marmeladedpaintings and added:
    this is basically me this week.
  15. retarding reblogged this from vicemag
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  21. marmeladedpaintings reblogged this from vicemag and added:
    that’s pretty badass.
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