We decided that even though we were a bit behind schedule that we would drive into the night to make it to San Pedro de Atacama our base for exploring in the region. It was Saturday night and there were tons of people out in the town, we didn’t realize before hand that the town was a big backpack haven and seem to be kind of a party town. We didn’t have reservations but we were able to find a hostel a bit outside of town. we had our own room with 12 beds for the two days we were in town. We crashed early because we were tired. The next day we went out and found breakfast and discovered that the geysers that we had planned to see were not accessible due to rain. In the driest desert in the world?!?! Instead of the geysers and hot springs we visited several lakes in the south with flamingos. The lakes in this area are a very important hydrological features in the desert but would have been more interesting if it hadn’t rained on us every day in the desert.
We then went to a community pool had a good swim and had a lovely time soaking up the sun and the water. We were going to end the day in the valley of the moon but it started raining and there were too many clouds to see the sunset. Every road we went down had large puddles and the arroyos were full of water.
Previously I had read that there was a drought in the area and that they had not received precipitation in six years but once they did receive water 2 years ago there was a massive bloom of flowers due to the rain. We searched for color and flowers but no avail there was none to be had, probably in about two weeks it will be gorgeous. Sunday night we went out for dinner and Maddy took the kids home and I went in search of the Packer game. I caught the second half and celebrated the win over the Cowboys by meeting some new friends and speaking bad Spanish and showing my Wisconsin spirit. Go Packers!!