Antigua to Montserrat

Antigua and Montserrat, 22 September 2016

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Landscape, Montserrat, Nature, Photography, Redonda, seascape, Travel

So here we are, on a tiny plane, I think the only passengers on a flight from Antigua to Montserrat.

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Landscape, Montserrat, Nature, Photography, Redonda, seascape, Travel

Just taking off, we are looking through at some small wharves at the north end of Winthorpe’s Bay.

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Landscape, Montserrat, Nature, Photography, Redonda, seascape, Travel

We would have taken off ENE but our heading is SW, so we’ve turned around and you can see a minor branch of the runway and the big building is probably a hangar for light aircraft.

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Landscape, Montserrat, Nature, Photography, Redonda, seascape, Travel

Nearby in Fitches Creek Bay, we see some seaside mansions and St George’s Anglican Church is amongst the trees at mid left.

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Landscape, Montserrat, Nature, Photography, Redonda, seascape, Travel

On the other side of the island, this is Jolly Harbour and Pearn’s Point.

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Landscape, Montserrat, Nature, Photography, Redonda, seascape, Travel

On the way, we get a glimpse of Redonda, a small hunk of rock owned by Antigua but located between Montserrat and Nevis.  It is difficult to land on and has no natural sources of water.  In the sixteenth to eighteenth centuries it was a refuge for pirates and from 1860 to 1914, people lived on it, mining guano.  There is a spurious monarchy of Redonda associated with it, though with only a tenuous association with the island.  The island has been recently cleared of long-horned goats (probably left by pirates) and black rats, which had stripped it bare.  Vegetation is now returning and the population of boobies and frigate birds is greatly increasing.  Redonda is also home to five endemic lizards that are unique to that island.  They include the Redonda ground dragon, Redonda tree lizard and the Redonda pygmy gecko that was only discovered in 2012.  Not surprisingly, we didn’t visit there.

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Landscape, Montserrat, Nature, Photography, Redonda, seascape, Travel

Now we are approaching Montserrat.  This is the north and east coast.

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Landscape, Montserrat, Nature, Photography, Redonda, seascape, Travel

In the background is the infamous volcano that erupted with great force in 1995, 1997 and 2010.  You can see where a recent lava shelf extended into the sea.

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Landscape, Montserrat, Nature, Photography, Redonda, seascape, Travel

Coming along the west coast now, from the north.

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Landscape, Montserrat, Nature, Photography, Redonda, seascape, Travel .

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Landscape, Montserrat, Nature, Photography, Redonda, seascape, Travel

… and coming in to land at the airport.

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Landscape, Montserrat, Nature, Photography, Redonda, seascape, Travel

We were met by our hosts and driven to our accommodation.

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Landscape, Montserrat, Nature, Photography, Redonda, seascape, Travel

We must have taken a detour on a northerly road for this view down the east coast of the island.  You can see that same lava shelf in the distance.

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Landscape, Montserrat, Nature, Photography, Redonda, seascape, Travel

Sunset from our balcony.

.

St Martin to Antigua

St Martin, Sint Maarten, St Bartholemey, Antigua, 18 September 2016

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Photography, Saint Barthelemy, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

Taking off from Princess Juliana international Airport in Sint Maarten.  Right beside the airport.

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Photography, Saint Barthelemy, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

This is a St Martin (as opposed to Sint Maarten) view, looking north over Simpson Lagoon with Marigot at the right at the end of the lagoon and Anguilla on the horizon.

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Photography, Saint Barthelemy, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

The inner suburban area of Sint Maarten.

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Photography, Saint Barthelemy, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

That strip in the middle is Philipsburg, commercial centre of Sint Maarten.

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Photography, Saint Barthelemy, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

 

The docks area of Philipsburg.

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Photography, Saint Barthelemy, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

This is now Saint Barthelemy, an island to the south-east of Sint Maarten.  The main centre of Gustavia in the foreground, Gustavia Industrial Zone in the cove at mid left and Gustaf III airport.

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Photography, Saint Barthelemy, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

The beaches are Anse du Gouverneur and Anse de Grande Saline. Saint Barthelemy was Swedish from 1784 when Louis XIV exchanged it for trading rights to Gothenburg, to 1878 when they gave it back.  It was then part of Guadeloupe but has been separate since 2003.

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Photography, Saint Barthelemy, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

Antigua.  This is McKinnon’s Pond and Runaway Bay, near the main town of St Johns.

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Photography, Saint Barthelemy, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

St John’s.

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Photography, Saint Barthelemy, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

This is the Coolidge Cricket Ground, colloquially known as the Sticky Wicket Stadium, where Curtley Ambrose and Viv Richards no doubt played many times.

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Photography, Saint Barthelemy, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

Near the airport with some older buildings.

.

Aerial Photography, Antigua, Photography, Saint Barthelemy, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

Having arrived where we were staying at English Harbour, I am on the floor with the dog at the local general store.

.

Santo Domingo to St Martin

Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, St Martin, Sint Maarten, 15 September 2016

.

Aerial Photography, Dominican Republic, Photography, Puerto Rico, Santo Domingo, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

Santo Domingo Port.

This is just after taking off in the plane.  The next eight images are flying along the south east coast of the Dominican Republic and the first ones are at or close to Santo Domingo.  They’re through a plane window of course so there are sometimes some reflections from inside the plane.

.

Aerial Photography, Dominican Republic, Photography, Puerto Rico, Santo Domingo, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

AES Andres electric power plane and LNG importing facility.

 

Aerial Photography, Dominican Republic, Photography, Puerto Rico, Santo Domingo, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

Still the port, incorporates both of the previous images.

.

Aerial Photography, Dominican Republic, Photography, Puerto Rico, Santo Domingo, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

San Pedro de Macoris.

.

Aerial Photography, Dominican Republic, Photography, Puerto Rico, Santo Domingo, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

El Soco.

.

Aerial Photography, Dominican Republic, Photography, Puerto Rico, Santo Domingo, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

Isla Catalina and La Romana.

.

Aerial Photography, Dominican Republic, Photography, Puerto Rico, Santo Domingo, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

La Romana.

.

Aerial Photography, Dominican Republic, Photography, Puerto Rico, Santo Domingo, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

Boca de Yuma.

Juan Sanchez Ramirez landed at Boca de Yuma in 1808, coming from Puerto Rico, and routed the French, who at that time controlled Hispaniola, in the Battle of Palo Hincado.  He then became Governor of the Spanish Colony of Santo Domingo until he died in 1811.  He is known as “the father of the Dominican Republic”.

.

Aerial Photography, Dominican Republic, Photography, Puerto Rico, Santo Domingo, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

Juanilllo, the eastern tip of the Dominican Republic.

 

Aerial Photography, Dominican Republic, Photography, Puerto Rico, Santo Domingo, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

Puerto Rico was probably covered in cloud (so I have no other images of the main island) but this is Ceiba Ferry Terminal, at the eastern tip of Puerto Rico.

.

Aerial Photography, Dominican Republic, Photography, Puerto Rico, Santo Domingo, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

Vieques National Willdlife Reserve and Punta Este, Vieques Island, Puerto Rico.

/

Aerial Photography, Dominican Republic, Photography, Puerto Rico, Santo Domingo, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

Culebra, Puerto Rico.

.

Aerial Photography, Dominican Republic, Photography, Puerto Rico, Santo Domingo, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

 

St Martin/ Sint Maarten is an island divided between France and the Netherlands.  This is the western tip, Les Terres Basses, St Martin. Anguilla in the background.

.

Aerial Photography, Dominican Republic, Photography, Puerto Rico, Santo Domingo, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

Cupecoy Beach. Sint Maarten in the foreground to the right, St Martin behind. Simpson Bay Lagoon behind the Sin Maarten buildings. The little white terrace houses on the left edge of the beach are half in St Martin and half in Sin Maarten.

This image provides a good summary of the difference between St Martin and Sint Maarten at the time.  Sint Maarten was an overdeveloped cruise ship destination, with multi-storeyed hotels and casinos, and more than 50% urban.  St Martin was more just a place where people lived with some nice undeveloped locations, much more interesting to us.

.

Aerial Photography, Dominican Republic, Photography, Puerto Rico, Santo Domingo, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

Sint Maarten, moving a little along the coastline.

.

Aerial Photography, Dominican Republic, Photography, Puerto Rico, Santo Domingo, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

A resort near the airport.

.

Aerial Photography, Dominican Republic, Photography, Puerto Rico, Santo Domingo, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

And here we are coning to land low over the beach.  I will have an image in a later post showing how this looks from the beach.

 

Aerial Photography, Dominican Republic, Photography, Puerto Rico, Santo Domingo, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

This is a view from where we were staying at Over the Hill Guest House in Grand Case, nearing sunset.

We knew we were in the hurricane season in the Caribbean but fortunately we did not encounter one.  A year after we were there, St Martin and Sint Maarten were hammered by Hurricane Irma, which passed directly over the island.  95% of buildings in St Martin were damaged and 60% rendered uninhabitable.  Also, 70% of the buildings in Sint Maarten were damaged and a third destroyed.  Our accommodation appears to have reopened after being closed for around a year though now they probably have few guests due to COVID-19.  Most of the buildings in adjoining properties show in Google Earth as still levelled to the ground.

.

Aerial Photography, Dominican Republic, Photography, Puerto Rico, Santo Domingo, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

Houses on a nearby hill.

.

Aerial Photography, Dominican Republic, Photography, Puerto Rico, Santo Domingo, seascape, Sint Maarten, St Martin, Travel

Night-time view in the same direction.

.

From Havana to Santo Domingo

Havana, Cuba to Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, 12 September 2016

.

I’ve just come back from a weekend covering the Thredbo Blues Festival and now have 3,000 images to process, so these posts may slow down a bit for a while.

On Monday around 12:30pm we were driving back from Thredbo. Normally I would have been playing table tennis and have had my car parked outside the centre. Had that been the case, the car would have been pulverised by hail, golf-ball sized or even larger. The windows would have been broken, all the panels dented and the car may have been written off.

Such are the incidents of the unfolding Climate Crisis. Especially with the current political corruption and paralysis, particularly in the US and Australia, it is merely a foretaste of what is to come, and not just in Australia.

Today there was also a fire burning on the edge of Canberra, just a few kilometres from where I live (though blowing in the opposite direction). Homes and an industrial area were threatened. A recycling centre is burning, creating hazardous smoke and Canberra Airport was closed for much of the day. Today was a high wind day. That fire is relatively under control but further high winds are forecast, including for a large area of south eastern New South Wales where there are several large fires burning out of control. Conversely, conditions may also be easing from tomorrow and the Indian Ocean Dipole (a major trigger) has now moved to neutral.

.

OK, back to the Cuba/ Caribbean trip. This post shows images taken from the plane between Cuba and the Dominican Republic.

.

Aerial Photography, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Travel

We have taken off from Havana and are now flying east over Cuba.

.

Aerial Photography, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Travel

The farm land looks productive.

.

Aerial Photography, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Travel

Perhaps you have read of the insect apocalypse.  80% decline in insect numbers over the last forty years, perhaps worldwide, at least Europe and the US.  Global warming is a factor but probably a greater cause is use of insecticides and other agricultural poisons.  Perhaps Cuba is fortunate here, because US sanctions may mean they have no access to modern toxic chemicals from companies such as Monsanto.

.

Aerial Photography, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Travel

We’re still over Cuba, but now the coast and islands at the eastern end.

.

Aerial Photography, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Travel .

.

Aerial Photography, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Travel .

.

Aerial Photography, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Travel .

.

Aerial Photography, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Travel

I’m pretty sure this is the western tip of Haiti.

.

Aerial Photography, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Travel

For those with limited knowledge of geography, the island to the east of Cuba is Hispaniola, which is divided into Haiti to the west and the Dominican Republic to the east.

.

Aerial Photography, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Travel

I have read that you can see the boundary between Haiti and the Dominican Republic from space.  Haiti is quite deforested and the Dominican Republic not at all.

.

Aerial Photography, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Travel

This goes back to the days of the Trujillo dictatorship in the Dominican Republic (1930-1961).  Dictators are usually bad news but he preserved the forests and sent the army in to ruthlessly suppress illegal logging.  Haiti on the other hand is one of the poorest countries in the world with little effective government and the whole countryside was stripped bare.

.

Aerial Photography, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Travel

It was too cloudy for me to see the border between Haiti and the Dominican Republic.  We are by now over the Dominican Republic (and probably for one or two of the previous images).

.

Aerial Photography, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Travel

A large dam with a city near by.

.

Aerial Photography, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Travel

Agricultural land

..

Aerial Photography, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Travel .

.

Aerial Photography, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Landscape, Nature, Photography, seascape, Travel

Probably the coast near Santo Domingo.

.

 

Head in the Clouds (Lahad Datu to KK)

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

.

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.

.

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

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

.

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

We are flying over Sabah.

.

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

Rivers and mainly cleared land below here.

.

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

The clouds could be quite majestic though.

.

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

.

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

.

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

.

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

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

.

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.

.

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

.

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

.

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

.

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

.

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

.

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

.

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

Now we are over mainland Malaysia.

.

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

A small sea-front village.

.

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

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

.

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

Palm Oil plantations.

.

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

.

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.
.

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.

.

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

Leaving KL Airport.

.

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

Still over the outskirts of KL.

.

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.

.

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.

.

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).

.

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

.

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

Coast of Sarawak.

.

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.

.

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

.

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

Approaching Kota Kinabalu.

.

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

.

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

.

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

.

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.

.

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.

.

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

Maybe there was once ancient Mayan irrigation canals here.

.

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

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

.

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

And after a while, Belize City hove into sight.

.

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

Soon we are flying over the Red Sea..

.

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

Many shallow islands below.

.

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

Well, the Caribbean Sea, actually.

.

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

The golden clouds of the late morning.

.

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

Memories of an asteroid crash nearby long ago flashed up…

.

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

… and then faded again quite quickly.

.

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

The weather began to seem almost normal.

.

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

But then, what’s normal anyway.

.

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

The edge of Cancun.

.

And yes, that was an infrared post.

Valle de la Luna Monochromes

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

.

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.

.

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.

.

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 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.

.

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 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.

.

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 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 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.

.

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 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.

.

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.

.

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.

.

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 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 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 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 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.

.

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 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 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 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 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

23rd November 2015. Atacama Desert, Northern Chile.

.

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.

.

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.

.

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).

.

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.

.

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

Some magnificent viewpoints are available.

.

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

Licancabur volcano, creating the moon in a virtual eruption.

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

… and the moon flies away like a balloon.

.

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.

.

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 .

 

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 .

.

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

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

.

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 .

.

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 .

.

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

Colours are heightened by the sunset.

.

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

.

Tulor and Pukará de Quitor

23rd November 2015. Atacama Desert, Northern Chile.

.

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

.

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.

.

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.

.

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

We are walking towards a couple of recreated houses.

.

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

.

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

.

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.

.

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.

.

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).

.

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.

.

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.

.

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.

.

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.

.

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.

.

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”.

.

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

The oasis it was built beside is still there.

.