Salar de Talar

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Salar de Talar salt flat with Cerros de Incahuasi in the distance
Salar de Talar is visible in the right half of this satellite image
Cerro Medano

Salar de Talar[1] is a 46 square kilometres[2] salt flat located in the high puna of northern Chilean Andes, at an altitude of 3,950 m.[2] It is part of a series of salt lakes and salt flats located at the foothills of a chain of volcanoes stretching along the eastern side of the much greater Salar de Atacama.

The closed drainage basin of Salar de Talar encompasses about 476 km² and is adjacent to other endorheic basins, including Laguna Miscanti, Laguna Tuyajto and Salar de Capur basins.[2]

The salty flat is bordered on the west by Caichinque and on the east by Cerro Medano. This latter is a mountain with striking shades of grey and brown, which contrast nicely with the sparkling white of the salt flat's surface. On top of that, colorful ponds fringe its shores. An important lava flow from the Caichinque volcanic complex formed two lobes which advanced into Salar de Talar.[3]

The climate of the area is arid, with an average annual precipitation of about 150 mm.[2] Salar de Talar is a part of the Central Andean dry puna ecoregion, which in this zone is characterized by tussock grass vegetation.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ This article refers to a salt flat that can appear on the maps being named as Salar de Aguas Calientes the northern portion and as Salar de Talar the southern portion. See also: Salar de Aguas Calientes.
  2. ^ a b c d (Spanish) Geoquímica de aguas en cuencas cerradas: I, II y III Regiones - Chile Salar de Aguas Calientes 3
  3. ^ "Caichinque". Global Volcanism Program. Smithsonian Institution. 

Coordinates: 23°59′S 67°41′W / 23.983°S 67.683°W / -23.983; -67.683