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Parinacota (6330m.) seen from a puddle of algae infested pond attached to Chungara lake (the non reflecting part). The lake itself is at 4500m altitude on the border with Bolivia. This area is part of Lauca National Park, less than 100km away from the Pacific Ocean as the condor flies. It can be reached as a one day excursion from the port city of Arica. Doing this, the thin air definitely makes itself felt, among the fellow excursionists, the male part of a newlywed couple collapsed after a visit to the church at Parinacota village, and had to be revived with oxygen. They had been smooching at the back of the bus during the entire ascent, so I guess the lesson is, don't. There is a fragrant herb that grows at this altitude, smelling the crushed yellow tips is said to help counter the effects of the altitude. There are many vicuñas (small llamas) here,whose wool is in high demand.

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Additional Photos by Tan Yilmaz (capthaddock) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3689 W: 138 N: 6179] (28790)
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