Argentina & Chile -- November 2008 -- Day 11-- La Quiaca to JuJuy --234km

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David_L
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Argentina & Chile -- November 2008 -- Day 11-- La Quiaca to JuJuy --234km

Post by David_L » Sat May 23, 2009 7:30 pm

Willy was anxious to make an early start on day 11 as we wanted to have plenty of time at the Yavia cryptocarpa site, and also on the way back down the valley we would need to make a detour into Humahuaca to pick up Mike. We duly breakfasted (not a major event in Argentina) early and presented ourselves at the van, whicvh had been parked in a secure area at the side of the hotel. This is what we found.


[attachment 18577 Hemmed_in.jpg]

Our van is the white bonnet you can see at the bottom right. Fortunately we had Jacques as our spokesperson to argue with the French motorcyclists in their own language. Finally he found the boss of the support group and the boss of the rally itself and got them to move enough of their gear to let us out. Much shouting in Spanish and French and much gesticulating and shoulder shrugging was involved, and it took about 30 minutes.
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David

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Re: Argentina & Chile -- November 2008 -- Day 11-- La Quiaca to JuJuy --234km

Post by David_L » Sat May 23, 2009 7:39 pm

We drove for some 20-30km out of La Quiaca parallel with the Bolivian border, and climbing higher into the hills. Initially the road was paved but as we got higher in turned into a dirt road. Eventually we turned up a side road that served a microwave relay station on one of the hills, and stopped near the top. This is the view back to the road.


[attachment 18578 Yavia_scenery.jpg]
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Re: Argentina & Chile -- November 2008 -- Day 11-- La Quiaca to JuJuy --234km

Post by David_L » Sat May 23, 2009 7:40 pm

The view was rather more spectacular in the other direction. I think that's Bolivia in the distance.


[attachment 18579 Yavia_scenery2.jpg]
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Re: Argentina & Chile -- November 2008 -- Day 11-- La Quiaca to JuJuy --234km

Post by David_L » Sat May 23, 2009 7:41 pm

We all set to work to search for Yavia cryptocarpa.


[attachment 18580 Yavia_scenery3.jpg]
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Re: Argentina & Chile -- November 2008 -- Day 11-- La Quiaca to JuJuy --234km

Post by David_L » Sat May 23, 2009 7:44 pm

And found it.


[attachment 18581 Yavia_cryptocarpa.jpg]

All the plants here looked in need of a drink and were quite shrunken. Looking at the clouds I suspect the first rain of the season was not far away.
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Re: Argentina & Chile -- November 2008 -- Day 11-- La Quiaca to JuJuy --234km

Post by David_L » Sat May 23, 2009 8:15 pm

Well we'd come a long way to see that little plant, so you won't mind if I post several pictures of it will you? First let's just look a little closer. Interesting substrate. A bare hill top with shattered rock lying on its side. Very little humus and no shade or shelter from bushes. Plants had pulled themselves down into the substrate in the drought.


[attachment 18582 Yavia_cryptocarpa2.jpg]
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Re: Argentina & Chile -- November 2008 -- Day 11-- La Quiaca to JuJuy --234km

Post by David_L » Sat May 23, 2009 8:18 pm

This shot puts them in context. You can see that they are quite hard to spot. I can see two plants. One has been 'cleared' for photography.


[attachment 18583 Yavia_cryptocarpa4.jpg]
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Re: Argentina & Chile -- November 2008 -- Day 11-- La Quiaca to JuJuy --234km

Post by David_L » Sat May 23, 2009 8:19 pm

Is that a bud I can see coming?


[attachment 18584 Yavia_cryptocarpa3.jpg]
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Re: Argentina & Chile -- November 2008 -- Day 11-- La Quiaca to JuJuy --234km

Post by David_L » Sat May 23, 2009 8:21 pm

Last one I promise! ;)
[attachment 18585 Yavia_cryptocarpa5.jpg]
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Re: Argentina & Chile -- November 2008 -- Day 11-- La Quiaca to JuJuy --234km

Post by David_L » Sat May 23, 2009 8:23 pm

There were lots of other interesting plants at this site. First Opuntioids for Mike. There were some very nice looking clumps of Tunilla (soehrensii) with long white or slightly pinkish spines.


[attachment 18586 Tunilla_soehrensii.jpg]
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