We’re utterly exhausted when we roll into San Pedro De Atacama, Chile, and searching around town to find a campground nearly finishes us off. Rob has endured the most by far, and is so throughly done he drops the Harley twice in ten minutes, before sitting on the ground, trying not to pass out.
The prices here are staggering. Literally jaw dropping. USD$8.40 camping for one night, $15-$20 for dinner in a restaurant and gas is around $1.45/liter ($5.50/gal). It doesn’t take long before we realize we need to get out of here, though a few beers and a pizza come first.
I spend more one night in Chile than I spent in a week in Bolivia – ouch.
Rob decides to rest for another day, so in the early afternoon myself, Warren & Sara roll up to Customs and are stamped out of Chile after only 24 hours. We drive back up over the same pass as the day before and come to the international border some 270km later, high in the mountains.
Rob & Sara have fallen behind, so I move inside, fill out another tourist card good for 90 days in Argentina, then get another sheet of paper for the Jeep based on the registration.
Again, no money, no copies, no worries.
I wait and wait, and start to get worried as the light fades. Warren’s been having a lot of trouble with his Toyota and I really don’t know what to do. I’m already stamped into Argentina and I don’t think I have enough gas to go back to find them. I leave a note at immigration and reluctantly move on, into my 16th and possibly final country. While driving a few more hours I think long and hard about the fact I’m now in Argentina and have essentially no more border crossings for my journey. Sure, I’ll cross Chile/Argentina/Chile a few more times, but those seem almost superficial and irrelevant.
So close now.
At 8pm I watch the beautiful sunset wearing shorts, flip-flops and a T-shirt.
Roll on another summer of camping, hiking & gorgeous mountains!