Saturday, January 17, 2009

Day Three: Southwest Circuit

Delirium had set in last night over dinner, with certain group members giggling far too much (um, me, maybe) over jokes that probably weren't really that funny.

That's what happens when you pack nine people into two Land Cruisers and drive them out into the desert for three days.

I woke up early and was initially startled by the pyramid of empty beer cans in the common area of the salt hotel. I smiled. Our boys had been up late, then.

Today was salt flat day. We'd get to the reason we'd come to southwestern Bolivia.

Lonely Planet Bolivia said it well, so let's just borrow from them:
"One of the world's most evocative and eerie sights, this, the world's largest salt flat (12,106 sq km) sits at 3653m... When the surface is dry, the salar is a blinding white expanse of the greatest nothing imaginable."

They pull the salt of the earth out of the ground here and sell it for human and livestock consumption. It's funny that Bolivia is such a poor country when it has so many natural resources, including silver, salt, gas, and uh, sweaters.

We cruised the plains of salt, stopping for perspective photos, some of which worked and some of which didn't. We pulled into Uyuni in late afternoon, salivating over the thought of pizza and showers.

More photos here.

1 comment:

Ed Ward said...

Oh, great, I thought. Salt-flavored beer! But no, that actually translates as "jump," doesn't it?