Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Peru's Mysterious Nazca Lines

More than a thousand years ago, someone moved small stones around on Peru's Nazca Desert floor and created enormous designs recognizable only from the air. The shapes include a monkey, a spider, a hummingbird, a condor, a lizard, an astronaut, a dog and human hands as well as many perfectly straight lines. Why these lines were created and what purpose or meaning they had is still a mystery. But who doesn't love a good mystery? We took a flight over the lines to see them for ourselves.

It's said that this desert gets very little rain or wind and that is why the designs have been preserved for so long. I found the natural desert topography to be as interesting as the constructed lines. The patterns visible on the ground look like dried rivulets, despite the fact that this desert gets almost no rain; I think they are beautiful though:


Here you can see a tree on the left, a bird on the right, a modern road cutting through the area and an observation platform (although from what I've heard, you can't see much from the platform).

A hummingbird:

A spider:

There's a lot going on in this photo but I'm not finding a figure. Can you?

Near the center of this photo is a parrot. Look for its beak. I don't know what the rectangles connected to it represent.

Again, the hummingbird:

I like the beautiful landscape here; it reminds me of frost on a window. The hummingbird is on the left:

They must get some rain here, or at least occasional runoff. There are a few signs of vegetation:

This one is a little harder to see. In the 7:00 position is a shark or an orca:

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