Atacama Desert – Chile
If deserts are determined as having an average of 250mm of rain per year, it is no question that this is the driest place on earth, registering less than 1mm. Expect your skin to fall off and your hair to fall out on this adventure. In the 90s, San Pedro de Atacama morphed from a mining town to a backpacker’s mecca driving the wildest adventurers to the most remote and deserted land on earth. NASA even tests space rovers for Mars in this area as the closest comparison we have on Earth. Want to check out the VLT (cleverly named very large telescope)? Check! This is your best view for stargazing in the world sans Mars. Set your alarm for the wee hours so you can get a glimpse of El Tatio Geysers before the dry day air evaporates your best photo opportunity. There are ill-advised hot springs in the desert and well-advised pisco sours to be had on Mars…ish.
Lut Desert Tour – Iran
9 days and 8 nights in a war zone? We’re in! People rage about danger, but there are beautiful people and lands in all places regardless of the warnings that people succumb to. Be not afraid, as your church song teaches you. This is a chance to take on a desert trek complete with camping, sleeping in a man-made cave, meeting locals and an optional camel. There is a ton of worth in meeting the people and exploring lands which are demonized and hot as hell. The devil can take your hand as you wander parts of the silk road. For years the Romans thought that silk grew on trees like money. When they learned silk came from worms, they sent fake monks to steal some worms and gain wealth and glory. Don your best robe and make your way to Iran. Bring on the camel!
Burning Man – Black Rock City
This one was almost too popular to visit, but maybe it is the popularity that would make us remiss to ignore. It is just weird enough, hot enough, and deserted enough to explore here. Our understanding is that people flock to this event to be covered in dust, love freely and escape the perpetual grid. We are all for these things. People have arrived with a lack of provisions and survived on the bartering kindness of strangers. The coming theme is iRobot, which seems anti-thematic. Obey orders? Prevent harm? Protect existence? We are confused, but intrigued. Shall we pack our best steam punk attire and 1000 gallons of water and join the tribe for a week in the summer in the desert, or burn it in effigy? Surely some of you have been. You tell us!