5 October 2015
Greetings from Camp 3 at the end of Stage 2.
A brutal day in the Atacama Desert. Ryan Hill and I took 7 hours to complete the 44km stage. But we finished joined 23/24thwhich is not too bad.
The course was a mixed bag of everything the Atacama has to offer – more than 30 water crossings in the first 10km, then up a mountain, through a 100m tunnel followed by 6km on the ridge of the mountain looking over a Mars-like valley, then down a 400m sand dune, followed by 11km over open terrain in very hot weather, then 10km over a salt plain with every step breaking the surface, and last but not least, climbing a sand dune before the finishing line.
It was really hot today and people are starting to drop out. The terrain is really tough on the body and we will have to manage the next three stages very carefully. My shoulders and feet took a pounding today, but I’m still in one piece and hopefully ready by tomorrow morning to take on stage 3 – 39km.
We encountered a few wild lamas and lizards yesterday, but only dogs and a few horse riders during today’s stage.
Please keep the messages and e-mails flowing.
I’m dedicating my participation in the 2015 Atacama Crossing to the work of the Sunflower Fund in South Africa.
Please visit http://www.sunflowerfund.org.za to learn more about their work and how to make a contribution.
Signing off from the Atacama.
(This blog was first published on the 4Deserts website)