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Photographer's Note

few days before this shot I had bought some postcards to mail home, and among them was a photo of Laguna Tuyajto - puffy white clouds racing across deep blue sky and reflecting in the turquoise green water framed by white textures of the salt... I was mesmerised, and I knew I would not leave Chile without MY OWN photo of the place.

we ended up going to this lagoon almost by accident. the original plan was to be in time for sunrise at a much closer Laguna Chaxa in the middle of Salar de Atacama, but upon arriving at the gates to Chaxa around 5:30 AM, we found those gates depressingly closed. having no idea when they might open, it was decided to go on and look for Lagunas Miscanti and Mińiques, which turned out to be true El Dorado (want proof? see here, here and here).

encouraged by this success, we pressed on, towards - as we thought - Laguna Tuyajto. hours passed, the washboard road did not improve, and there was no sight of the lagoon. we saw several salt water lagoons, but none of them was Tuyajto from my postcard. we saw vicuńas and nandus, but we saw no other cars. we speculated, that we might have passed into Argentina already (which would not have been too bad, Argentinian steaks are delicious). we quiety contemplated what would happen when we pass the point of no return and have no gas for return trip. we started saying "ok, let's see what's around THAT curve and then go back" and "let's go for another 5 minutes and then turn around" a lot.

I had already resigned to the fact that I would not get my coveted shot. but then, even though we had just agreed to really go just for another 5 minutes, after this alloted time expired, Kristaps just kept driving. and withing two minutes the road curved (again) and elusive Laguna Tuyajto was there. of course, it looked nothing like the postcard, but I did get my shot.

so this is for Kristaps and for forgetting that he had to turn the car around.

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RAW, ISO 100, 40mm focal length, spot metering.

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Additional Photos by Kristine KL (avene) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1586 W: 134 N: 2932] (12675)
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