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by Shady Ady
Hinckley, England, United Kingdom
September 2, 2006
From journal The Sacred Valley of the Incas
August 21, 2005
The mine itself has been created as a result of a stream running through a mountain. The snowmelt from this stream runs through a mountain. Inside this mountain is a large salt deposit. When the stream runs through it, the water picks up the salt and carries it out of the mountain. The Incas then created many drying ponds where they catch this salt water. They allow the water to sit in these ponds and the hot Peruvian sun causes the water to evaporate and the salt is left behind. The workers then come by and pack the salt into bags and carry the 130lb. bags up the hill and put them on a mule or a truck today. They are able to create four different types of salt from industrial grade all the way to table salt. The site is amazing because there are at least a 1000 of these ponds down the mountainside. On the day we went even it was hot and there were still men and women working. It gave us an appreciation for our jobs. Our guide said they only made about $120 a month.
We had the opportunity to walk across the top rim of the mines and down the other side it was a great experience.
When you stop by don’t forget to try the roasted corn and fava beans they are a Maras specialty.
From journal The Secrets of the Sacred Valley