At 14,000 Feet, You Can See The Earth Form Right Before Your Eyes
You get up early in the morning, when it is still dark and head out for the long drive up, the dawn sun gently rising behind the silhouettes of jagged mountains. You go from the warm desert to the early morning chill of 14,000 and just as the sun crests above the mountains, the rays open up a great, steaming, boiling field of geysers — El Tatio, the third largest geyser field in the world, and certainly the highest. It is breathtaking. You spend hours just wandering between each bubbling hole into the earth, each with its own signature look and formation, some in pools, some in heaps of calcified earth, built up like anthills. Steam surrounding you in a great mist, spotlighted by the rising sun. It is eerie. Like a movie. You can see the earth forming, right before your eyes. This was one of the highlights of my trip to the Atacama Desert — a vast expanse of contradictory geological formations, from miles of rolling dry humps and hills, to deep gouges of canyons, to salt flats with flamingos, overlooked by a ring of over a dozen volcanoes. This is the Atacama Desert. And the awesome tour guides of Tierra Hotels take care of everything, including setting up a delightful breakfast…here in what feels like the center of the earth. Gurgling, seizing, right before your eyes. Amazing. Go here. Do this.