Friday, 27 February 2015

Carreterra Austral Day 8 Free Camp At Puerto Tranquillo To Glacier And Back

Well, the morning awoke but we didn’t, looked at the clock when we woke up to find we had missed breakfast and smoko and were lining up for lunch, a great sleep from an epically peaceful location.

Finally everyone outa bed we got the fire going again and enjoyed an extremely late breakfast at near mid day.

Such was the pace we decided to have a bite of lunch, Juan and Alice cooking up a pasta while we opted to make small pizza style bread kinda thingies cos our awful dry Chilean bread had dried even more making it suitable for toasting with cheese mustard and ham….good choice to I might add.

Concluding lunch we packed up and headed for the road at nearly 3 pm … funny thing is normally we are looking to get off the road at this time but Puerto Tranquillo was only 44 km away, getting their saw us arrive amidst a sea of backbackers and travellers … it was like main street New York.

With the Glacier in mind we gathered some fresh dry stale bread etc and headed AWOL up the valley to find a camp site.

It was getting very cold and the evening was pulling a draw string on the light so camp was priority, we rode up the valley and everything was fenced off so it was starting to look pretty grim, we found one spot that was ok but a foot or tire wrong would see the bike 6 feet under water, not wanting the risk we opted to carry on.

I again started questioning my merits but yet again perseverance paid off with a tip.

We spotted a big Mercerdes Overland truck in a clearing that looked good, Ellen went and asked if we could join their spot and we were welcomed in.

IMG_6399 by twomotokiwis, on Flickr

Setting up we made a fire and started cooking up a storm again, Christian and Alica (from the truck) came bearing gifts reassembling firewood and beer … never turn that down so they joined us for our fire and chats.

Yet another great day on the Carreterra Austral on an international level.

The following day was Glacier day, packing up our camp we left to do the 25 km to the Glacier, upon arrival we discovered they wanted to charge $3500 CLP each (about $7 bucks) for a 20 minute walk, we ALL borked at that.

Prior to that in a pleasant conversation with the ranger girl we had given her a lolly (because we are nice) ((and I wanted a lolly)) so it turned out she was softened by our warm approach to her, we said we would pass on seeing the Glacier as we felt it was very expensive given you only see it from a distance.

With a smooth smile and a low voice she said we can all go in gratis, her warmth was welcomed with yet another lolly …talk about cool as.

Given this opportunity we took it leaving all our precious gear in her hands and did the short walk, the weather not 100% so no mountains due to cloud cover but the glacier still serving up and optical gem and grande view.

We were here

IMG_6437 by twomotokiwis, on Flickr

Such was the relaxed pace of the day we stayed for a about 2 hours seeing many people come and go with selfies and "we were here" posy photos … then they quickly moved on to the next attraction somewhere else.

Christian and Alica turned up as well so we enjoyed more chats with them talking travel, trucks and tech tips.

GOPR3367 by twomotokiwis, on Flickr

The glacier

IMG_6435 by twomotokiwis, on Flickr

Parting our eyes away from the Glacier we decided we would find camp, by this time it was already bordering 3 pm (again), a discussion was had about who was going to go where, given we were 2/3 the way up the valley we decided to head to the top, Juan opting to head back to make camp as the road was torturing the 12 inch wheels of the AdVespa.

IMG_6476 by twomotokiwis, on Flickr

Our day turned up a small problem as our 2 liter water bottle jumped over its clip and sat right at the exhaust exit, within seconds the plastic bottle was blown apart and melted from exhaust heat destroying our second and last water bottle (the other one died with the hit and run in Brazil)…it is the little things like that which can turn your day upside-down cos 2 liters while travelling is quite a bit.

Our way up

IMG_6416 by twomotokiwis, on Flickr

The bridge abutments but no bridge...not built yet

IMG_6468 by twomotokiwis, on Flickr

Christian and Alica also decided to head up and camp somewhere up the top, we caught up with them on the way back down wishing them well heading north and us south., great meeting you guys

Onwards back to camp we arrived as the sun was disappearing so we started another fire and brewed up another night of chats and discussions over the last of the rum, an earlier start was agreed as we all had to make some ground the following day.

Right on queue our alarm woke us up, I was in the middle of chatting up Hallie Berrie again and doing quite well till the alarm went off.

Our day we woke to welcoming us again

IMG_6401 by twomotokiwis, on Flickr

Up and outa bed, breaky, tent (very wet from dew) packed down and we hit it back to Puerto Tranquillo for fuel and wifi.

Juan and Alice opting to go out via Chile Chico and we opted to head down to Tortal and Villa O'Higgins

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