EV 1499 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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EV 1499

Enigmatic Variations 1499

The South American One by Gaston

Setter’s Blog

Extra letters in wordplay give RANGE, MOUNTAIN, FALLS, HEADLAND, DESERT, LAKE; accordingly, the South American features ANDES, SUGARLOAF, IGUAZU, CAPE HORN, ATACAMA and TITICACA are to be highlighted.


When the editor asked me to contribute a continent-based EV for the ‘Olympic Series’, I was delighted to be offered the chance to create one around South America. Madame Gaston (pictured above getting very wet at the Iguazu Falls) and I had the holiday of a lifetime in this amazing continent seven years ago. With the exception of Lake Titicaca, we visited all the ‘elements’ included in the puzzle, and many more besides. The best? Difficult to choose, but if pressed I would have to say the Atacama Desert. Bone dry, brilliantly clear night skies, and plenty of exciting sorties on our own into the wilderness –including one at 4500 + metres , dodging boiling hot geysers that shot up out of nowhere with no warning.

If the puzzle encouraged you to visit, then do so. Chile, in particular, was truly fascinating (and friendly); from the spectacular Atacama in the north to wind-ravaged Cape Horn in the south, with some delicious wineries in the Casablanca Valley in between, it makes for the perfect adventure holiday destination.

A full review of this puzzle can be seen over on fifteensquared.