Geez It's Cold

Trip Start Oct 22, 2005
Trip End Ongoing

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Where I stayed
Sajama Hostel

Flag of Bolivia  ,
Monday, October 30, 2006

"Geez it's cold" Megan said as we all got up at 4AM on this our final day of the four-wheel drive tour. We had to get up this early so we could see sunrise at the Sol de Manana Geysers and have breakfast at the Laguna Challviri thermal springs. All of us were ready waiting at the Landcruiser but where was our driver Ovideo? Ahh still in bed! After waking him, packing and giving the 18 year old car time to cough and splutter in the freezing air of the early morning we were ready to go. Looking up into the star filled sky we pointed out the Southern Hemisphere stars to our friends from the Northern Hemisphere. We could make out the Southern Cross but I don't think they fully grasped the Saucepan and gave us a weird "Are you serious?" look when we pointed that one out.

The Sol de Manana Geysers at 4870 meters above sea level were amazing. Boiling mud and hot gases roaring out of the ground as the sun rose. How good was this? Unfortunately it was very very cold so we decided to warm up and headed off to the thermal springs. Being the first car there the springs were empty. Rick decided he was going in so stripped off to his jocks and jumped in. Eventually he managed to convince Daniel to strip off and he also relaxed in the warm waters. Slowly other cars showed up and about 30 people braved the freezing cold run from the cars to the warmth of the springs. It was warm inside but freezing cold out, sitting at 5000 meters up.

After a quick breakfast of a slice of cake (Clementine we miss you!) we headed off to see the green coloured Lagoon Verde, shadowed by the large Licancabur Volcano. The colour of the water was amazing. One day we see red waters, the next aqua green. As our Polish friends had to get a bus back to La Paz that night for a connecting flight back to Europe we decided to move on, driving to the Valley of the Stones. The rock formations reminding us of those found up north back home in Australia. On the way back we did a quick stop in the town of San Cristobal. Six years ago the town didn't exist, springing up with a huge mineral boom occurring in the area.

With Uyuni in sight the car gave a cough, splutter then suddenly stopped. Oh no, so close yet so far! We'd run out of petrol. Ovideo jumped on the roof and with Rick's help we siphoned enough fuel out of the two plastic containers to get us into town. Back in town we all went out for a pizza dinner before Daniel, Magda, Marcin and Gosia had to get their bus back to La Paz. Guys if you're out there reading this we had a great time. Thanks!

What do you do in Uyuni after a four day bash in the amazing Bolivian wilderness? Well we found a nice quiet hostel called the Sajama Hostel, had a lovely gas powered hot shower and relaxed.
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