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  • Total days on the road: 586
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  • Miles Driven: 36821
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Salt Flat Shenanigans

Written by Jared on November 6, 2012

The three of us in the salt flats of Uyuni.

Start: October 24, Uyuni
Finish: October 26, Uyuni
Miles Driven on Salt: 120
Goofy Pictures Taken: 147
Godzilla Attacks: 3
Bottles of Rum That Are Always Gone: 2

The Salar de Uyuni is the world's largest salt flat, covering an area of over 4,000 square miles. At almost 12,000 feet, it's a bleek, desolate and absolutely beautiful place to do a bit of off-road driving.

It also happens to be one of the few places where it's possible to to take ridiculously out-of-perspective photos without the help of a green screen or photoshop. And we promise that neither of those were used in the making of this blog post...

A public bathroom in the town of Uyuni.

The town of Uyuni fit our expectations after hearing about it from other travelers. A run-down dusty hole of a place with little to do or see aside from the salt flats. Luckily we were able to find a cheap hotel that looked a bit better than this crumbling public bathroom.

A creepy statue in Uyuni.

As if the rubble-strewn streets weren't enough, they had to go and place a few creepy metal statues along the main thoroughfare. Fortunately we only had to spend two nights in Uyuni, one before and one after we venture out into the salt. We wouldn't have lasted long in any case, there were absolutely zero wifi signals in the entirety of the town.

Piles of salt on the salt flats.

The white stretch just visible on the horizon was a welcome sign after driving the six-mile stretch of horribly corrugated road leading up to entrance of the salt flats. Salt is harvested in Uyuni to the tune of many thousands of tons per year. Luckily there doesn't seem to be much risk of running out in our lifetime.

An island in the salt flats, covered with cacti.

After driving fifty miles into the salt flats we reach the first of several cactus-covered "islands" called Isla Incahuasi. Kobus begins the photo taking by snapping a few dozen pictures of Jessica as we head to check out he cactus forest.

Kobus next to a gigantic cactus.

Kobus posed next to this monstrous cactus. We are told they grow about one inch per year, making this guy roughly as old as the United States.

Jessica tries to stab kobus with a salt-sicle.

Jessica, the professional photographer, is never one to pose nicely for pictures. Things get a bit dicey when she pulls up a salt shard and makes ready to stab the next person who takes her picture.

Kobus finger-squishes Jessica.

Realizing that the salt shard stabbing business might be a bit too messy for her tastes. Also, the salt crumbles when you actually try to move it in a swift motion... Jessica retaliates by squishing Kobus who is still snapping away in the distance.

Our stop for lunch.

We stop for lunch and to scout out potential campsites at Isla Pescado, a much less crowded alternative to the main island. After chowing down on some quesadillas and our first can of refried beans in months, we head back into the salt to engage in a bit of goofy photography.

Godzilla attacks!

Godzilla attacks!

Fishing for Jessica.

I go fishing for the elusive Jessica-fish.

Jared and Kobus with two gigantic bottles of Rum.

Why is the rum always gone?!

Godzilla attacks again!

Godzilla's back for more, this time he's after Blue! Jessica, fails to save us!

Jessica on top of a gigantic bottle of wine.

Unfortunately, she's is otherwise occupied doing the Egyptian on a bottle of Chile's finest.

Jessica gives Kobus a gigantic bottle of rum.

Kobus finds that the rum actually isn't all gone.

Jessica stomps on Kobus.

But then he drinks it all and Jessica decides to put her foot down.

Jessica riding a big llama.

And then she's distracted again by gigantic fully things. A noble steed indeed.

Mini-godzilla attacks the huge llama.

Jessica watches in awe as Godzilla proves to be no match for the power of fluffy.

Jessica gets a talkin' to.

And Kobus gives Jessica a stern talkin' to for not sharing the toys. Boo hoo.

Sunset on the salt flats.

Having had our fun, we head back to the island to setup camp and catch sunset over the salt flats.

Stars over the salt flat.

The stars were out, but the moon was nearly full, which gave us an awesome view of our white surroundings.

Up next: We head into Bolivia's wild southwest for a few days of bush camping and high-desert scenery the likes of which we've never seen.


#3 TREE 2012-11-11 22:32
Too much time on your hands! :)
Andre Pereira
#2 Andre Pereira 2012-11-06 23:56
Really nice silly pics, this place looks awesome at night!
#1 James 2012-11-06 16:29
hahaha amazing photos guys, cant wait to get down there!

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