The Atacama Desert is 15 million years old. Some of the oldest mummies found on earth come from the
Atacama Desert, dating as far back as 7000 years.
The entire Atacama Crossing is held at least 2.3 kilometers / 1.4 miles above sea level and covers the distance required to make a horizontal
crossing of the country of Chile (250 kilometers / 150 miles).
The highest elevation on the course is at Camp 1, which is more than 3,000 meters /
10,000 feet above sea level.
Daytime temperatures in October average 26°C / 79°F, while nighttime temperatures average 11°C / 52°F. Temperatures, however, range widely and the desert climate can be extremely hot during the day and cold at night.
Up to 200 competitors representing more than 40 countries are expected to compete in the Atacama Crossing 2015.
Up to 30% of competitors are expected to have completed a previous 4 Deserts / RacingThePlanet event.
The fastest finish time on any Atacama Crossing course is held by Vicente Garcia Beneito of Spain with an overall time of 23 hours and 46 minutes in 2012.
The fastest women's finish on any Atacama Crossing course is held by Anne-Marie Flammersfeld of Germany with an overall time of 29 hours and 49 minutes in 2012.
Approximately 20% of competitors run the entire course, 60% combine running with walking, and 20% walk the entire course. The fastest completion time is expected to be around 25 hours and the slowest around 70 hours.
The Atacama Crossing is a self-supported race; competitors must carry everything they need for seven days on their backs. The average backpack weighs 9
kilograms / 20 pounds.