The Atacama is dry, high and large. Nestled in a narrow strip between the Pacific and Andes it covers over 40,000 square miles (105,000 square kilometres). It's been on our 'places to be' list since visiting Chile in 2006.
Today, just about everyone seems to know about the Atacama because of the mining accident that has trapped 33 miners awaiting rescue some 700 m below the surface. It's winter right now, and the desert is cold. Underground it's another story though with 30+ degrees.
Apparently the miners might still be caught below when we will be in the area in early December. Wishing the miners, families and rescue team speedy success in getting these miners back to the surface!