El Tatio

24th November 2015. Atacama Desert, Northern Chile.

.

Atacama Desert, Chile, Geyser, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Tatio, Travel, Wilderness

There was a very early rise this morning for the 90 minute trip from San Pedro de Atacama to the El Tatio geyser fields so that we could arrive before dawn.

.

Atacama Desert, Chile, Geyser, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Tatio, Travel, Wilderness

El Tatio is said to be the highest geyser field in the world and the largest in the southern hemisphere.

.

Atacama Desert, Chile, Geyser, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Tatio, Travel, Wilderness

The sky is bright but it’s still before dawn because there are no shadows,

.

Atacama Desert, Chile, Geyser, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Tatio, Travel, Wilderness

Now we have shadows so the sun is up.

.

Atacama Desert, Chile, Geyser, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Tatio, Travel, Wilderness

A large fumarole.

.

Atacama Desert, Chile, Geyser, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Tatio, Travel, Wilderness

This is probably the largest geyser.

.

Atacama Desert, Chile, Geyser, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Tatio, Travel, Wilderness

The sun is starting to rise behind it.

.

Atacama Desert, Chile, Geyser, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Tatio, Travel, Wilderness

And now it’s peeking through

.

Atacama Desert, Chile, Geyser, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Tatio, Travel, Wilderness

… leaving reflections in the surface water.

.

Atacama Desert, Chile, Geyser, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Tatio, Travel, Wilderness

It’s remarkable how the geysers manage to throw out lines of differently coloured rocks just at the point where it becomes unsafe to walk.

.

Atacama Desert, Chile, Geyser, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Tatio, Travel, Wilderness

There is a ruined building on the site but it’s not ancient.  It was probably associated with sulphur extraction many decades ago.

.

Atacama Desert, Chile, Geyser, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Tatio, Travel, Wilderness

Silhouettes in the steam.

.

Atacama Desert, Chile, Geyser, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Tatio, Travel, Wilderness

Darkness and light.

.

Atacama Desert, Chile, Geyser, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Tatio, Travel, Wilderness

The field once included 67 geysers and 300 hot springs.

.

Atacama Desert, Chile, Geyser, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Tatio, Travel, Wilderness

Geysers once reached 10 metres in height whereas now they are up to a metre.  Individual geysers are larger in New Zealand, Iceland and the US.

.

Atacama Desert, Chile, Geyser, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Tatio, Travel, Wilderness

Drilling for a hydrothermal energy project in 2009 caused a steam blowout 60 metres high that was not capped for a month.  The subsequent outcry led to the banning of such projects.

.

Atacama Desert, Chile, Geyser, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Tatio, Travel, Wilderness

In 2010, El Tatio was declared a protected area.

.

8 comments on “El Tatio

  1. Robert Hayes says:

    Why was there an outcry against tapping the heat? You have wonderful experiences and produce magnificent images. I’m jealous.

    Like

  2. kasiawrites says:

    Wow that looks unreal!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Meredith Stokes says:

    Incredibly beautiful! nature is phenomenal! Thanks.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I was also very much taken by “..how the geysers manage to throw out lines of differently coloured rocks just at the point where it becomes unsafe to walk.”

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s