Head in the Clouds (Lahad Datu to KK)

14 May 2019, Lahad Datu, Sabah, to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

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These are images from two flights, from Ladah Datu to Kota Kinabalu in Sabah and from Kota Kinabalu to Kuala Lumpur. They are all monochrome conversions of infrared images.

When leaving on the plane from Lahad Datu I was instructed by a stewardess that I was not allowed to take photographs out the window during takeoff because the camera is an electronic device. That has never happened to me previously and astonished me as the camera is hardly going to be sending out wifi signals. Consequently, most of these images are of clouds.

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Aerial Photography, Black and White, Clouds, Infrared, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Sabah, Wilderness

Not long before, we took off from Lahad Datu in Eastern Sabah.

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Aerial Photography, Black and White, Clouds, Infrared, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Sabah, Wilderness

We are flying over Sabah.

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Aerial Photography, Black and White, Clouds, Infrared, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Sabah, Wilderness

Rivers and mainly cleared land below here.

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Aerial Photography, Black and White, Clouds, Infrared, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Sabah, Wilderness

The clouds could be quite majestic though.

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Aerial Photography, Black and White, Clouds, Infrared, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Sabah, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Black and White, Clouds, Infrared, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Sabah, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Black and White, Clouds, Infrared, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Sabah, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Black and White, Clouds, Infrared, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Sabah, Wilderness

This is near Kota Kinabalu.  We have landed and taken off again.

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Aerial Photography, Black and White, Clouds, Infrared, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Sabah, Wilderness .

Aerial Photography, Black and White, Clouds, Infrared, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Sabah, Wilderness

I was able to photograph clouds over the South China Sea for a while until the visibility closed right in.

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Aerial Photography, Black and White, Clouds, Infrared, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Sabah, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Black and White, Clouds, Infrared, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Sabah, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Black and White, Clouds, Infrared, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Sabah, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Black and White, Clouds, Infrared, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Sabah, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Black and White, Clouds, Infrared, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Sabah, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Black and White, Clouds, Infrared, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Sabah, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Black and White, Clouds, Infrared, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Sabah, Wilderness

Now we are over mainland Malaysia.

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Aerial Photography, Black and White, Clouds, Infrared, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Sabah, Wilderness

A small sea-front village.

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Aerial Photography, Black and White, Clouds, Infrared, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Sabah, Wilderness

Workers’ cottages, probably, beside the ubiquitous palm oil plantations.

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Aerial Photography, Black and White, Clouds, Infrared, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Sabah, Wilderness

Palm Oil plantations.

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Aerial Photography, Black and White, Clouds, Infrared, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Sabah, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Black and White, Clouds, Infrared, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Sabah, Wilderness .

This was the last post of our trip to Sabah.  You can see links to all the other posts in the Sabah Itinerary post.

Next, a return to the last few days in Havana in the Caribbean trip.

KL to KK (Kuala Lumpur to Kota Kinabalu)

Kuala Lumpur to Kota Kinabalu, South China Sea, 1 May 2019.
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The images in this post are taken from a plane above the South China Sea, flying from Kuala Lumpur to Kota Kinabalu, on my way to a two week wilderness photography excursion in Sabah, formerly British North Borneo.

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Aerial Photography, Infrared, Kota Kinabalu, Kuala Lumpur, Landscape, Photography, Sabah, seascape, Travel

Leaving KL Airport.

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Aerial Photography, Infrared, Kota Kinabalu, Kuala Lumpur, Landscape, Photography, Sabah, seascape, Travel

Still over the outskirts of KL.

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Aerial Photography, Infrared, Kota Kinabalu, Kuala Lumpur, Landscape, Photography, Sabah, seascape, Travel

Taking photographs from a plane requires a relatively clean window.  Internal reflections can be a problem and sometimes one side of the plane is better than the other.  A rubber lens hood against the window might help for the internal reflections. You need a high enough shutter speed to account for the vibrations of the plane.

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Aerial Photography, Infrared, Kota Kinabalu, Kuala Lumpur, Landscape, Photography, Sabah, seascape, Travel

Haze can be a problem but I don’t think a polarising filter would help as I think it would pick up diffracted colours from the plane’s windows.  Post processing is likely to make a big difference.  Infrared can help too as it tends to cut through the haze.

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Aerial Photography, Infrared, Kota Kinabalu, Kuala Lumpur, Landscape, Photography, Sabah, seascape, Travel

Islands in the South China Sea (I can’t work out from Google Earth exactly which ones).

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Aerial Photography, Infrared, Kota Kinabalu, Kuala Lumpur, Landscape, Photography, Sabah, seascape, Travel .

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Aerial Photography, Infrared, Kota Kinabalu, Kuala Lumpur, Landscape, Photography, Sabah, seascape, Travel

Coast of Sarawak.

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Aerial Photography, Infrared, Kota Kinabalu, Kuala Lumpur, Landscape, Photography, Sabah, seascape, Travel

This and the next one is probably the coast of Sabah, possibly Brunei.

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Aerial Photography, Infrared, Kota Kinabalu, Kuala Lumpur, Landscape, Photography, Sabah, seascape, Travel .

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Aerial Photography, Infrared, Kota Kinabalu, Kuala Lumpur, Landscape, Photography, Sabah, seascape, Travel

Approaching Kota Kinabalu.

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Aerial Photography, Infrared, Kota Kinabalu, Kuala Lumpur, Landscape, Photography, Sabah, seascape, Travel .

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Aerial Photography, Infrared, Kota Kinabalu, Kuala Lumpur, Landscape, Photography, Sabah, seascape, Travel .

All images are infrared, taken with a camera with a converted infrared sensor.  There is a lot of scope for variations in colour in processing colour infrared.

 

From Flores to Cancun

Guatemala, Belize, Mexico, 31 August 2016

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This follows a journey in two small planes from Flores in Guatemala to Cancun in Mexico via Belize.

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Aerial Photography, Belize, Guatemala, Infrared, Landscape, Mexico, Nature, Photography, Travel

This appears to be a small Mayan Temple from the modern era, in other words a church.

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Aerial Photography, Belize, Guatemala, Infrared, Landscape, Mexico, Nature, Photography, Travel

Soon we were flying over the red lakes of forgotten time in what was once the lands of the Maya and really still is.

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Aerial Photography, Belize, Guatemala, Infrared, Landscape, Mexico, Nature, Photography, Travel

Maybe there was once ancient Mayan irrigation canals here.

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Aerial Photography, Belize, Guatemala, Infrared, Landscape, Mexico, Nature, Photography, Travel

The land underneath started to be hidden by the golden clouds.

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Aerial Photography, Belize, Guatemala, Infrared, Landscape, Mexico, Nature, Photography, Travel

And after a while, Belize City hove into sight.

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Aerial Photography, Belize, Guatemala, Infrared, Landscape, Mexico, Nature, Photography, Travel

Soon we are flying over the Red Sea..

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Aerial Photography, Belize, Guatemala, Infrared, Landscape, Mexico, Nature, Photography, Travel

Many shallow islands below.

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Aerial Photography, Belize, Guatemala, Infrared, Landscape, Mexico, Nature, Photography, Travel

Well, the Caribbean Sea, actually.

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Aerial Photography, Belize, Guatemala, Infrared, Landscape, Mexico, Nature, Photography, Travel

The golden clouds of the late morning.

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Aerial Photography, Belize, Guatemala, Infrared, Landscape, Mexico, Nature, Photography, Travel

Memories of an asteroid crash nearby long ago flashed up…

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Aerial Photography, Belize, Guatemala, Infrared, Landscape, Mexico, Nature, Photography, Travel

… and then faded again quite quickly.

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Aerial Photography, Belize, Guatemala, Infrared, Landscape, Mexico, Nature, Photography, Travel

The weather began to seem almost normal.

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Aerial Photography, Belize, Guatemala, Infrared, Landscape, Mexico, Nature, Photography, Travel

But then, what’s normal anyway.

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Aerial Photography, Belize, Guatemala, Infrared, Landscape, Mexico, Nature, Photography, Travel

The edge of Cancun.

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And yes, that was an infrared post.

Valle de la Luna Monochromes

22nd to 23rd November 2015. Atacama Desert, Northern Chile.

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Links go to posts with the colour versions of the images (where there may also be more information). If an image does not have a link, the preceding one applies.

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Aerial Photography, Archaeology, Atacama Desert, Black and White, Chile, Landscape, Monochrome, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, San Pedro de Atacama, Tulor, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness

Aerial view, between Santiago and Calama.

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Aerial Photography, Archaeology, Atacama Desert, Black and White, Chile, Landscape, Monochrome, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, San Pedro de Atacama, Tulor, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Archaeology, Atacama Desert, Black and White, Chile, Landscape, Monochrome, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, San Pedro de Atacama, Tulor, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness

San Pedro de Atacama.

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Aerial Photography, Archaeology, Atacama Desert, Black and White, Chile, Landscape, Monochrome, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, San Pedro de Atacama, Tulor, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Archaeology, Atacama Desert, Black and White, Chile, Landscape, Monochrome, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, San Pedro de Atacama, Tulor, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness

Tulor.

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Aerial Photography, Archaeology, Atacama Desert, Black and White, Chile, Landscape, Monochrome, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, San Pedro de Atacama, Tulor, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Archaeology, Atacama Desert, Black and White, Chile, Landscape, Monochrome, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, San Pedro de Atacama, Tulor, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Archaeology, Atacama Desert, Black and White, Chile, Landscape, Monochrome, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, San Pedro de Atacama, Tulor, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness

Pukará de Quitor.

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Aerial Photography, Archaeology, Atacama Desert, Black and White, Chile, Landscape, Monochrome, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, San Pedro de Atacama, Tulor, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Archaeology, Atacama Desert, Black and White, Chile, Landscape, Monochrome, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, San Pedro de Atacama, Tulor, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness

Valle de la Luna (Moon Valley) Tour.

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Aerial Photography, Archaeology, Atacama Desert, Black and White, Chile, Landscape, Monochrome, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, San Pedro de Atacama, Tulor, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness

Coyote Leap.

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Aerial Photography, Archaeology, Atacama Desert, Black and White, Chile, Landscape, Monochrome, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, San Pedro de Atacama, Tulor, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness

Views from on high.

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Aerial Photography, Archaeology, Atacama Desert, Black and White, Chile, Landscape, Monochrome, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, San Pedro de Atacama, Tulor, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Archaeology, Atacama Desert, Black and White, Chile, Landscape, Monochrome, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, San Pedro de Atacama, Tulor, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Archaeology, Atacama Desert, Black and White, Chile, Landscape, Monochrome, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, San Pedro de Atacama, Tulor, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Archaeology, Atacama Desert, Black and White, Chile, Landscape, Monochrome, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, San Pedro de Atacama, Tulor, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Archaeology, Atacama Desert, Black and White, Chile, Landscape, Monochrome, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, San Pedro de Atacama, Tulor, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness

Valle de la Luna.

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Aerial Photography, Archaeology, Atacama Desert, Black and White, Chile, Landscape, Monochrome, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, San Pedro de Atacama, Tulor, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Archaeology, Atacama Desert, Black and White, Chile, Landscape, Monochrome, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, San Pedro de Atacama, Tulor, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Archaeology, Atacama Desert, Black and White, Chile, Landscape, Monochrome, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, San Pedro de Atacama, Tulor, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Archaeology, Atacama Desert, Black and White, Chile, Landscape, Monochrome, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, San Pedro de Atacama, Tulor, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Archaeology, Atacama Desert, Black and White, Chile, Landscape, Monochrome, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, San Pedro de Atacama, Tulor, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

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Valle de la Luna

23rd November 2015. Atacama Desert, Northern Chile.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Travel, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness

This and following posts are from excursions with Cosmo Andino Tours, who offer a great service.  This excursion was to Valle de la Luna (Moon Valley).

 

Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Travel, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness

Coyote Leap.

I saw the cracks before I ventured there.  I assume from the fact that I’m writing this that I survived the experience.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Travel, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness

Valle de la Luna is about thirteen kilometres west of San Pedro de Atacama.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Travel, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness

It is a part of the Cordillera de la Sal (Salt Mountain Range).

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Travel, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness

It is also inside Los Flamencos National Reserve and part of the Atacama Desert.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Travel, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness

Some magnificent viewpoints are available.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Travel, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Travel, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness

Licancabur volcano, creating the moon in a virtual eruption.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Travel, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness

… and the moon flies away like a balloon.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Travel, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness

Valle de la Luna is comprised of sand, stone and salt. It is a totally arid area without any precipitation.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Travel, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Travel, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

 

Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Travel, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Travel, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Travel, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Travel, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness

The dramatic shapes were created by geological folding under a dry salt lake.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Travel, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Travel, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Travel, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Travel, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Travel, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Travel, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness

Colours are heightened by the sunset.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Travel, Valle de la Luna, Wilderness .

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Tulor and Pukará de Quitor

23rd November 2015. Atacama Desert, Northern Chile.

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In the first morning of my visit to the Atacama Desert, I joined a local archæological tour.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, Travel, Tulor, Wilderness.

First we visited the ancient village of Tulor.  As the sign says, the village dates from 800BC to 500AD.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, Travel, Tulor, Wilderness

The area is a desert environment today but would not have been as dry when people lived here.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, Travel, Tulor, Wilderness

We are walking towards a couple of recreated houses.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, Travel, Tulor, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, Travel, Tulor, Wilderness .

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, Travel, Tulor, Wilderness

Inside, we can see something of the way they were built.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, Travel, Tulor, Wilderness

This woman may have been sitting at the empty fireplace for a very long time.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, Travel, Tulor, Wilderness

View through the door (as the guide was trying to hurry me on).

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, Travel, Tulor, Wilderness

Remains of the actual dwellings.  The village was at an oasis and was abandoned when the oasis dried up.  It is not well protected and is slowly eroding away.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, Travel, Tulor, Wilderness

I think this is a llama (rather than an alpaca).  In the oasis near our next destination.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, Travel, Tulor, Wilderness

And that is Pukará de Quitor, which the Spanish conquistadors besieged and took in 1540.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, Travel, Tulor, Wilderness

The fortress was built around 1200 by the Atacameño people, who occupied the land from around 8,000BC.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, Travel, Tulor, Wilderness

The Tiwanaka people were overlords from 400 to 1000AD and the Incas shortly before the Spanish Conquest.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, Travel, Tulor, Wilderness

As you can see, it it a large fortification, protected by a gorge on the other side.  The Spanish took it with the aid of Yanacona Indians.  They then executed 300 of the local defenders and displayed the heads on poles.  At that time, it became known as “the City of the Heads”.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, Pukará de Quitor, Travel, Tulor, Wilderness

The oasis it was built beside is still there.

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San Pedro de Atacama

21st to 22nd November 2015. Atacama Desert, Northern Chile.

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I am now completing posting of my 2015 trip to Mauritius, Reunion, Madagascar, Falkland Islands, South Georgia and Atacama Desert with final posts on the Atacama Desert.  You can find other posts on this expedition from the itinerary here.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, San Pedro de Atacama, Street photography, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife.

While this post is about my arrival in San Pedro de Atacama, the first few images are from the plane the previous day.  This one is from the southern coast of Chile or even the Straits of Magellan.  There are houses on the peninsula in the foreground.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, San Pedro de Atacama, Street photography, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife.

Sunset over a sea of clouds.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, San Pedro de Atacama, Street photography, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife. .

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, San Pedro de Atacama, Street photography, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife.

We are now in the following day, on the flight between Santiago and Calama.  Note the huge volcanic crater at bottom left.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, San Pedro de Atacama, Street photography, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife.

Another view over the Atacama desert.  This is contiguous with the next image but the viewpoint has changed so I can’t align them.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, San Pedro de Atacama, Street photography, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife.

The Atacama Desert is the driest desert in the world and may also be the oldest, yet humans have lived here based around rivers and oases for 9,000 years.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, San Pedro de Atacama, Street photography, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife.

A couple of guanacos at the side of the road (I am now in the bus from Calama Airport to San Pedro de Atacama).

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, San Pedro de Atacama, Street photography, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife.

Neighbouring house with satellite dish.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, San Pedro de Atacama, Street photography, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife.

This is the far end of the main street at San Pedro de Atacama.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, San Pedro de Atacama, Street photography, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife.

Turning back and walking in the other direction….

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, San Pedro de Atacama, Street photography, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife.

San Pedro de Atacama is the launch pad for exploring the region, with 5,000 permanent inhabitants and at 2,400 meters (8,000 feet).  It was part of Bolivia until Bolivia lost its sea coast after the War of the Pacific in 1879 to 1884.

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Aerial Photography, Atacama Desert, Chile, Landscape, Nature, Photography, San Pedro de Atacama, Street photography, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife. .

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