Flamingos - Photos

Railway tracks though the middle of nowhere. The tracks here are a narrower guage than North America I think. We were quite literally in the middle of nowhere. These tracks stretched as far as the eye could see in either direction through an unchanging landscape through the altiplano.
Lots of unusual rock formations, like these ones that look like some little kid's drawings of waves. The next day we saw more unusual rocks.
The kids climbed on the rocks.
Driving through the altiplano. This road is higher than 3000 metres - probably around 3500. We had to get out of the jeep and walk up one of the hills because the road is too rough. The climb was spectacular - we loved it, It was really tiring walking uphill at this altitude.
This is Daisy - she was our cook for the trip. She was very sweet. She said that her husband died last year in a work accident. She has two little girls age 2 and 4. The girls stayed with their cousins (her sister) while she was on this trip.
The scenery was stunning. I could talk all day about it and not do it justice. The Andes are so huge. I never understood in the movie "Alive" why when the plane crashed in the Andes that it was so hard to walk out. It is so clear now.

Then we saw flamingos... There are shallow lakes filled with wild flamingos.
Some of the lakes have a black tar-like substance in patches around the edge of the lake. Crude perhaps? Tar? I acidentally stepped in a spongy patch and it came bubbling up around my white running shoe - eek.

The lakes were like glass and the flamingos reflected on the surface.
The lakes are crusted with white calcium and salt and other minerals around the edges and even into the lake quite far in some places. There are bright terra-cotta and yellow and purple hills, and the bright black and pink flamingos and the pure white outline of the salt and calcuim around the lake.

This pale pinkish substance the flamingos are walking on is not mud. Perhaps it is flamingo guano? It was really gross and stuck to our shoes like melted chewing gum and had the consitency of really overcooked pasta.

The lakes are really quite different in colour. Some are quite green, others are terra-cotta, and others are brown and blue. It is all the different minerals that give them their colour.

Daisy cooked us a lovely chicken lunch today with pasta and vegetables. She joked with Aodhan that it was flamingo and he said that flamingo was delicious. Aodhan said it was the best chicken he ever had and still askes if he can get some more chicken like that.
The lakes were surrounded by purple mountains with snowy white peaks. The water red and green and blue. The flamingos were pink and black and the grass was yellow and green.