Day 16 and Rest Day in San Pedro de Atacama

 

There were several side trips available today, one to the Geysers del Tatio. Of course, we do have Yellowstone so to get up at 4 am to see some water bubble out of the ground was not terribly compelling. Apparently, most other agreed. So what else do you do with a little spare time in the middle of probably the highest desert in the world? Fix cars, of course.

These are the real heroes on the rally – the mechanics. These are their trucks but they are all busy working on cars in need of repairs. I’ll try to get a shot of them later. No, the Land Rover does not have a problem, it’s just a little tired after yesterday’s climb up here and it’s yawning.

 

Some of the mechanics were on the 2010 Peking to Paris Rally with us and it is really good to see them again. These guys come from all over the world to support these events – couldn’t do without them.

 

Nothing like a little shade to draw a crowd of cars in need of repairs. The Buick (number 12) has a cooling problem.

 

The Camero has had suspension problems, had parts flown in and is now back in the hunt.

 

That is Steve Hyde who is a true character, very funny and a very fast driver explaining to Lloyd and Bill Bolsover who owns the 8 liter Bentley with its hood up about what is now holding the engine in his car. Broken motor mount bolts had Steve resort to a ratcheting strap to do the job – we hope it holds.

 

When there is no motoring news I guess I have to reporting on hotel conditions. We are staying at the Kunza Hotel here in San Pedro, out here in the middle of nowhere. The shocking thing is how fabulous a place the hotel is – beautiful spa, lovely swimming pool, excellent dining and very comfortable rooms. What more could you want in the desert.

Do not the main entrance fool you, this is a great spot.

 

The bar and general sitting area have been well used – we do test the bartender – I don’t think he is used to as many thirsty travelers all at the same time as we provide but the beer is cold.

 

The front desk will get its test tomorrow when all these characters want to check out at the same time.

 

Very lovely patio dining – you do need to be in the shade in the middle of the day here. We had dinner out there last night and it was great, nice and cool after a long hot day.

 

A decorative piece of drift wood – certainly didn’t come from anywhere near by …

 

The units are little clusters of three rooms each, very private with separate entrances all build of stone.

 

The back of each room has its own little patio with nice landscaping (considering what they have to work with – grass is a non-starter in this part of the world). Shade is very important here also.

 

The rooms are comfortable and well appointed – not much you could want that isn’t already provided. The hotel prides itself in service and general upkeep of the property – I would give them excellent marks in all categories.

 

We did manage to visit downtown San Pedro but not much was happening. Another border tomorrow into Argentina so who know what will happen. We also have a long climb to higher altitudes than we have reached before – the previous high was 15,895 feet – it should be interesting.

 

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One Response to Day 16 and Rest Day in San Pedro de Atacama

  1. Keith Carlson says:

    Can’t see other comments on B’bry, am traveling, so perhaps redundant. Good for you for having some time in a better place—sounds as if you have everything but hot & cold running redheads there. Nice break.

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