I stopped and bent double, gasping for air. I wouldn’t have minded, but I’d only run 10 metres. I looked up the hill, and a couple of hundred metres away I could see Julie and Elizabeth climbing into the jeep.
I’d stopped on the edge of the lagoon to take “one last photo”, and got completely lost in the composition. Not quite able to capture the sheer scale and beauty with the lens I was using, I broke out the wider Zeiss Batis 18 f2.8 and immediately the image spoke to me. This was the point I caught sight of Julie waving at me to hurry up. Just time for another couple of frames and a quick jog back to the jeep I thought, forgetting that Laguna Colorada is at an altitude of four and a half thousand metres.
I had to stop three times before eventually making it back to the jeep, completely out of breath and feeling like an idiot for trying to run at this altitude. Inhaling as much of this rarefied atmosphere as possible, I climbed into the jeep, and no sooner than the door was closed we were off — and now I was inhaling a lung full of dust and sand too … but the photos were worth it.