Driving through high altitude deserts

We took off at Purmamarca for the Salinas Grandes, a high altitude lake which dried out some 10’000 years ago to leave a 3m salt crust on about 500 km2. Standing on it is a bit like standing on an endless glacier sprinkled with mini crevasses. A beauty totally hostile to life.

We drove hours along the salt lake on a gravel road on 3.200m altitude and only saw 4 to 5 cars coming our

Sandy trunk
Sandy trunk
way. I felt relieved that our Renault Clio did not  break down on its 170’000th km. The doors didn’t close properly though, so we took a few kilograms of sand as a souvenir to the lowlands. The sand crawelled into every part of our clothes, hair and luggage to leave a nice white layer on absolutely everything including on the insides of our backpacks.

We drove about 8h on that day. I don’t remember having driven that much at all. Yasuko had a backache. We decided not to head back to busy downtown Salta again even if it would have been the easiest choice. Instead we chose a nice looking finca on-line, drove there, had a look and fell in love right away. Finca Valentina is a beautifully transformed house with a lot of love given to details, great staff and a lovely Italien owner, Valentina.

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