Monday, 6 August 2007

Salares de Uyuni and the Altiplano

From the frontier town of Uyuni (complete with tumbleweed) I set out on a three day trip into the southwest corner of Bolivia... After the bizarre train graveyard, 12,000 square kilometres of dazzling Salares (saltflats) consumed the first day. Blinding white salt as far as the horizon and back... except for Isla de los Pescadores - a cacti covered coral island inhabited only by vizcachas. Difficult to comprehend that the entire "lake" is 3670m above sea level (although my lungs are reminding me all too often).

Next was two days exploring the rock formations, hot springs, gysers and lakes of the altiplano in the big orange truck. Laguna Colorada is as pink as its resident James flamingoes; Laguna Verde and Laguna Blanca (at the dizzying height of >5,000m) are as stunning as their names suggest. The Bolivian customs checkpoint at 5,300m was enough to knock out both me and my iPod (which is still suffering), but from there it was all downhill to Chile... =)

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