Hiking, biking and sand boarding on the Valley of the Moon Northern Chile, San Pedro de Atacama

The area is lunar like.  When salts lakes and ocean water dried here, it left a sugar coating in the desert.  

This rock is a crystal of salt in different proportions.  On the top it is pure with clear crystal and one the lower 3/4s contains a mineral mixture with salt.  The rock is the size of a large fist.

A close up of this rock, shows us how rain erosion forms cone like trails. These rocks are common in the Valley of the Moon.  In back is the moon.

As one reaches any high point in this valley, it is easy to see how mountains, dunes and minerals evolved.  Floods have played a major roll in erosion, making unique sites.

The Valley of the moon's signature rock.

The Valley of the moon at sunset revealing orange colors on surrounding volcanoes.

One can enjoy many activities in this region from great mountain biking to sand boarding caving and guided tours.

*Feature written and photographed by Phillips, July 2001.



San Pedro de Atacama is an interesting desert town. And is a long bus ride from Santiago or La Paz. It has a couple of hip locations at night, but make sure and bring cash because there are no ATM's and many of the local merchants do not accept credit card. The desert people here are poor, and are hungry for the tourist dollars. There are many adventures to do from here, including: biking, hiking, sand boarding and climbing.

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Globetrotter Adventures
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