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valle de luna

experience the clear, crisp air of San Pedro de Atacama..
San Pedro de Atacama is a beautiful adobe-esque town on the edge of Atacama Desert in Chile, just west of the Bolivian border.

I took this photo in near by Valle De Luna, while I was mountain biking through a virtual moonscape of natural geography. The air is so dry and clear here, you get these amazing colors from sunsets. This wild cloud formation just formed before our eyes, and the setting sun painted this crimson red.... an amazing sight.

You have to fly into Calama, (90 min bus to San Pedro), or you overland for a couple days from Uyuni, Bolivia and cross the border into San Pedro. The evenings are full of festive small bars with fireplaces and good fun. Try Andes Traveller to rent bikes or horses (www.andestraveller.com.ar).

Go hike or bike through Valle de Luna and get lost in time. You can trek, sandboard, see flamingos at the nearby Las Flamencos national reserve, and hot springs; all very close to town.

Shot with velvia film and tripod. nikon f100
no filters or heavy processing, just natural magic light!

Salt Mountains
Once at the Valle de Luna, be sure to take a trip into the valleys of the Salt Mountains. They literally speak to you. Their voices are the result of the salt crystals rubbing against each other as the expand from the heat during the day and cool in the late afternoon and evening. The interpretation is up to you!

Also near San Pedro are the rather unique El Tatio Geysers at 4300m. If you are lucky enough to be there during new/first quarter moon, you will never see the stars of the southern sky brighter than as you climb towards them in the pre-dawn darkness. Once there, bathing is optional, but most everyone boils their eggs and reheats their hot chocolate in the pools.

San Pedro de Atacama, Antofagasta Region, Chile