Three days of ripio riding would take us to Puerto Natales, and our first salt water, Ie., the sea, for several months. The landscape was big, empty.
But not without humour. At least I hoped it was a joke and not a warning.
Wild camping on this plain on the 26th saw us eat our tea and sit down with a cuppa and some chocolate biscuits, watching the sunset on one side and the full moon rise on the other.
And early the next day we saw the opposite occur.
Dawn as seen from my sleeping bag.
As an american might say, 'It was kinda neat'. We spoke about the fact that at home too many things would have prevented us from doing that, from enjoying that moment. It felt a little special. The temperature was also special at 2 degrees overnight.
Moonset the other way.
It was also special for another reason. I had collected some large rocks to help stake out the tent. A little while later I was handling one large rock when Sarah said, "Dave, that is a black widow spider". I was surprised, but sure enough there it was, sat upon its trade mark untidy egg sack, stuck to my rock. This rock was quickly and gently removed from our vicinity. I also gained a new sensitivity to all the hundreds of similar rocks which surrounded us.
There she is. You cannot see the red markings on her abdomen from this angle.
The following night we crossed the border once again. The Chilean border guards - a very happy bunch - allowing us to camp beside their building, which was good news as the forecast strong, gusting winds arrived at nightfall. At least we provided a minor diversion to the tour group buses which passed through the post the next morning.
We were very glad of the shelter afforded by the border guard post.