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Il ciclo di sale (sale Caravan, lago Assale, Feb 08)

Ricchezza degli host lago Assale gli afar - salata. Per secolo, sale è stato esportato su Caravan da qui a tutti di Etiopia e oltre. La procedura è cambiato poco fino ad oggi. PRD spedizione, abbiamo avuto l'opportunità di witnes il ciclo completo.
During the night, hundreds, sometimes thousands of camels have arrived and gathered in the valley next to Ahmed Ela, the cosmopolitan Afar village next to the lake. A century-old tradition will repeat itself. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
During the night, hundreds, sometimes thousands of camels have arrived and gathered in the valley ne... [info]
(5510 visti)
The number of caravans, the number of camels in each caravan, and the names of available salt cutters have all been recorded and matched to each other through a ticket system, supervised by the Shumbahari (the Chief of the Lake). Each caravan is thus assigned a group of 3 salt cutters, which ensures that the size of a single caravan is ideally 10-20 camels.
If there are less camels than workers, or vice versa, some of the workers (or camel caravans) will have to wait another day, but earn priority on the next day. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
The number of caravans, the number of camels in each caravan, and the names of available salt cutter... [info]
(7350 visti)
One by one, in defined order, the caravans leave towards the salt cutting area, about two hours march while it's still cool.  (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
One by one, in defined order, the caravans leave towards the salt cutting area, about two hours marc... [info]
(5400 visti)
The march of the camels leads through one of the most hostile places on earth, the salt lake. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
The march of the camels leads through one of the most hostile places on earth, the salt lake. (Photo... [info]
(4960 visti)
Lake Assale - a large expanse of salt which has been deposited by countless invasions from sea water. In places, the salt is 5 kilometers thick. The Afar have been extracting salt here for centuries. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Lake Assale - a large expanse of salt which has been deposited by countless invasions from sea water... [info]
(6834 visti)
Salt crystals form in hollows where they are protected from wind and the rare rains.  (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Salt crystals form in hollows where they are protected from wind and the rare rains. (Photo: Tom Pf... [info]
(5603 visti)
Close-up of salt crystals. The brown color of the lake comes from small dust particles carried in by the often strong catabatic winds. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Close-up of salt crystals. The brown color of the lake comes from small dust particles carried in by... [info]
(5714 visti)
Focolo ("salt cutters") are providing the hard work, to break up the solid crust of the lake. Only about the upper 10 cm can be used.  (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Focolo ("salt cutters") are providing the hard work, to break up the solid crust of the lake. Only a... [info]
(5411 visti)
Focolo at work. Each group of 3 focolo per caravan is paid 10 bir per camel by the Arho (the caravan owner). (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Focolo at work. Each group of 3 focolo per caravan is paid 10 bir per camel by the Arho (the caravan... [info]
(5068 visti)
After the work of axes, several focolo join their forces to break up meter-sized fragments of the crust. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
After the work of axes, several focolo join their forces to break up meter-sized fragments of the cr... [info]
(5178 visti)
The second step in production is shaping the blocks into rectangles that weigh exactly 7 kgs. This highly qualified job is done exclusively by Afar workers, who are called Hadelimera, the salt cutters.  (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
The second step in production is shaping the blocks into rectangles that weigh exactly 7 kgs. This h... [info]
(6326 visti)
Cutting the salt blocks requires a good eye and feeling for the material. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
Cutting the salt blocks requires a good eye and feeling for the material. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
(6486 visti)
In a sea of broken crust, these Afar can be proud of their well-cut blocks. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
In a sea of broken crust, these Afar can be proud of their well-cut blocks. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer) [info]
(5198 visti)
While the salt cutters and salt shapers are at work, the camel owners and their animals rest. They wait until enough blocks are ready for packing. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
While the salt cutters and salt shapers are at work, the camel owners and their animals rest. They w... [info]
(5073 visti)
It's getting late morning and hot; the camel owners, the Arho, are impatient to start loading the camels. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
It's getting late morning and hot; the camel owners, the Arho, are impatient to start loading the ca... [info]
(4887 visti)
It's loading time. After having paid the 1.50 Bir to the cutters for each block, each camel can carry up to 20 blocks. The blocks are carefully tied together. (Photo: Tom Pfeiffer)
It's loading time. After having paid the 1.50 Bir to the cutters for each block, each camel can carr... [info]
(5215 visti)
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