We decided to cross the dessert to Bolivia by 4x4 jeep. This was not just a cooler way to get to Bolivia, but we realised that we could pretty much see all things offered on excursions from San Pedro. The trip would take us three days and we would be up on altitudes close to 5000 meters. After some reseach we decided on a Bolivian travel company which was recommened to us. You need to be careful choosing companies as some people have died crossing the dessert due to poor drivers etc.
In the end the group we went with cosisted of almost only people we knew from before, the French journalists we met in San Pedro, a SouthAfrican couple we met in Vicunca, and two crazy french guys, Jonas and Aurelien, who we met a few places but first in Valpo. The last people was a nice couple, an Aussi and a Korean girl. All of us got along great and it was mainly the people that made it such a great trip, especially the two french guys were crazy, either they were singing songs for the group, climbing something, or trying to walk out on the thin ice covering some of the lagunes. Actually in one lagun the ice started to break across the whole lake and everyone had to run. In another lagune, one of the guys fell through with one of his feet. Crazy frenchies!
The landscape was amazing and very diverse. We saw some amazing colored lagunes with pelicans and lamas, saw some crazy rockformations, an active vulcano (not too active though, only some smoke coming out) went to swim in some hotspring, and we also stoped at an area with loads of geisers. There were none shooting out water very high, it was more steem blowing up and mud boiling in craters. Still very cool...possible a bit smelly.
At the begining we did not actually suffer so much...I mean we were out of breath and a bit of headache but pretty good still. However, the first night was very tough for everyone. It was minus 10 degrees and everyone was having headaches, trouble breating, and very quick heartbeats. I was actually feeling the altitude the next day too. Maybe even more than Laura, who is usually very sensitive to high altitudes and bumpy car rides.
Finally on the third day we got to the famous Salar de Yuni, the worlds largest salt flat. Even though it was not sunny, the landscape was incredible. So surreal, difficult to describe really, suppose a bit like some Salvadori Dali painting. Everything is cristal white, and there are no sense of distance, which allows for some great photo illusions. After watching the sunset, we went off to an "island" full of hugh cactuses, some 6-7 meters high. The contasts between the salt flat and the green island was really cool.
We uploaded loads of pictures, but still its nothing as we took over 800 pictures in these three days, so it was difficult make a selection...
Abandoned bus in the middle of the desert
Hug it to the bear, isnt it?
Geysers...and us walking around them
Muddy bubbling lava...
Como se llama?
Lagoons and the landscape
Aurelien finally pushed nature too far....and fell through
The gang! The best company!
Dalis rock formations
Railtracks in the middle of the desert.
Dancing on a can
Where is Lauri?
Lauras only friend... a CACTUS
Laura on Cactus Island
Girls! Look closer...There is a surprise for you!
Me los llevo a casa...parecen ricos...nyam nyam
New french taxi...Free style!
Gullivers trip to Salt desert
Henrik best jumping position
Could you pass me the SALT?
Because I worth it!