Blog

Latest News
Jan 4, 2008

New Website  

I’ve replaced my old web gallery with this new, more agile site. The Portfolio section includes new images from Chile and elsewhere along with earlier images. This site will also host my blogs and allows for comments and more interaction. It’s also  generally easier to manage, which means I’ll be posting and updating much more frequently. Keep an eye on the home page for upcoming events. If you are looking for an image from the old site that you don’t see here, feel free to send me an email or a message through the contact form. Thanks for visiting!

Read More
Travels
Nov 3, 2007

Visviri Circuit  

August 31 | My GPS Route Map This route of about 160 miles winds through the altiplano to the border town of Visviri and returns along the old train route. The road climbs over the mountains, at an altitude of over 17,000 feet, and requires navigating through streams, sand patches, and rocky terrain. Visviri lies on the border with both Peru and Bolivia; the quiet town comes alive on Sundays for the Tripartite International Fair where you can buy items like 93 proof Bolivian liquor. The road continues on through the dry, sandy landscape, passing by empty nomadic villages and […]

Read More
Travels
Oct 29, 2007

Desert Memories: Journeys Through the Chilean North  

“All of us, living in ghost towns though we do not know it.With the illusion that what we leave behind will not be swept away by the wind, that something will remain against the corrosion of time.Hand by hand, hand in handGloriously making believe we will outlast the desert” Ariel Dorfman, Chilean novelist, playwright, poet and human rights activist writes about his journey through northern Chile through San Pedro de Atacama, along the Panamerican highway and the nitrate corridor, and up to Arica. Along the way he stops in Pisagua to remember his close friend Freddy Taberna who was executed […]

Read More
Travels
Oct 21, 2007

Gasoline  

To truly immerse yourself in the landscape of northern Chile, it is essential to have your own vehicle, ideally one with high clearance and four-wheel drive. Driving in Chile does have its challenges–the distances are vast and the roads are often in poor condition. But then the only way to really comprehend the vast emptiness of the northern desert is to spend several hours driving through it, uninterrupted by signs of civilization. I picked up a Suzuki Gran Vitara at the Calama airport and returned it at the end of my trip in Arica, a few kilometers from the Pervuian […]

Read More
Travels
Oct 15, 2007

Arica to Putre  

August 28 | My GPS Route Data Driving from the seaside port of Arica to the mountain town of Putre requires an elevation gain of 11,500 feet. Tours from Arica to Lauca National Park make the trip up and back in one day, which can be exhausting. I took my time driving up and stopped along the way. About two thirds of the way up the road passes by an abandoned railroad car painted in brilliant colors. A hippy couple lives here and will serve tea with coca leaves while they espouse their philosophy of living off the land. Labels: […]

Read More
Travels
Oct 15, 2007

Iquique to Arica  

August 27 | My GPS Route Data On the way north to Arica I took a detour to Pisagua, first famous as a landing site for Spanish conquistadores, then a key port for mining industry, then a prison and death camp under Pinochet. A hundred years ago this was a bustling town of several thousand that hosted touring opera companies from Milan and stage actress Sarah Bernhardt. Today, however, only about 150 residents remain and the buildings are largely deserted and decaying.   The descent from the Panamericana at 3,500 feet down to the water’s edge is a perilous ride […]

Read More
Travels
Sep 30, 2007

Los Prisioneros  

My soundtrack while driving hundreds of kilometers along the flat, desolate Panamericana was the one CD I had purchased along the way, a tribute album to Los Prisioneros, arguably the most important band in Chilean rock history. The album contains 18 of their songs performed by a variety of contemporary bands, with styles ranging from ska to hip-hop to heavy metal. I was turned on to this album by the staff at Subterraneo record store in Iquique (Latorre 704). Here’s a classic Prisioneros video from the 1980s for the song We Are Sudamerican Rockers

Read More
Travels
Sep 23, 2007

San Pedro to Iquique  

300 Miles, Saturday August 25 | My GPS Route Data After leaving San Pedro early, I stopped in Chiquicamata, site of the largest open mine pit on the planet and the last stop for gasoline for over 170 miles. From here a pockmarked road cuts across 40 miles of brown sandy earth to the Panamericana, the main highway connecting north and south. Unexpectedly, this major artery is a narrow two lane road, patchy in spots, and sometimes diverted onto an unpaved dirt road for miles at a time due to construction. The surrounding landscape is completely devoid of any vegetation […]

Read More
Travels
Sep 17, 2007

Miscanti and Miniques  

The trip to the alpine lakes Miscanti and Miniques was 154 miles round trip at an average speed of 18 miles per hour, as much of the route is on a dirt road climbing from 7,800 feet to 13,800 feet.   Miscanti and Miniques | GPS Map | My GPS Route Data from San Pedro View from Toconao Bridge Labels: Chile

Read More
Travels
Sep 16, 2007

The Moon from the Southern Hemisphere  

San Pedro is bustling with tour agencies hawking their services, offering guided trips to salt flats, geysers, flamingo reserves and mountain peaks. One of the more unique offerings is a night time tour of the skies, led by french astronomer Alain Maury and his wife Alejandra. Their home and laboratory in the desert is surrounded by telescopes through which visitors can take a close up look at the moon, planets, and instellar phenomena. Northern Chile is the site of numerous observatories, including the world’s largest, because of the clear sky, minimal interference and high altitude. I took this photo through […]

Read More
Menu