24 February 2019 | Bahia de Corcovado
21 February 2019 | Puerto Montt
Have you ever...?
19 April 2019
Who would have thought getting on the bus could be so difficult? It began with our first attempt to make a 3 day trip over to Bariloche, Argentina. We needed to get off the boat, see some mountains and renew our Chilean visas. It was my birthday so we splurged and made reservations at a nice hotel on the lake, planned our itinerary, closed up the boat and headed for the bus station. Have you ever gone up to the ticket counter to buy tickets, passport in hand, but forgot the little tourist cards they gave you when you entered the country? We have. "No tourist card, no bus" we were told. Tails between our legs we returned home.
Our second attempt was 5 days later. We made reservations at the same hotel, closed up the boat, collected our passports and tourist cards and headed for the local bus stop to catch the bus into town and the main terminal for the bus to Bariloche. Have you ever got up early on a Sunday morning in order to catch the city bus to the main bus terminal, only to find that the buses don't run on Sunday? We have. Never mind, we stuck out our thumbs and 35 minutes later a nice young man on his way to Grandma's picked us up and took us right to the station. We got the last seats on the bus with 3 minutes to spare.
Our time spent in Bariloche was amazing and I'll tell that story later. We checked out of our hotel and made our way to the main terminal. Have you ever found the correct city bus at the right time and made it to the main bus terminal with all your important papers in hand 45 minutes early only to be told there is not a single seat left on the only bus? We have.
There's something to be said for traveling with all inclusive package deals where everything is taken care of for you, but what's the fun in that?
Chiloe to Valdivia 4/4-4/5 2019
13 April 2019
The 140 mile passage from Isla Chiloe to Valdivia took 28 hours. We motor sailed through large south swells on the beam and very choppy seas. Skies were clear, light winds from the SW, not a single pesky fishing boat and the Humbolt current actually flowed in the right direction, north, giving us a lift. It took a little while to get used to being in Blue Water again but overall it was a fast and easy trip.
So now we are here at Alowplast Marina and Boatyard located on the beautiful Rio Valdivia where Rum Doxy will hang out until we return again next season. From our dock looking out our port windows we are surrounded by heavily forested hillsides, golden grass marshes and the steady ebb and flow of river water. Determining the ebb or flow of the river is easy by watching resting Great Grebes float backwards in the water. Looking out the starboard windows is the Alowplast boat yard where the Chris White Catamarans are built. We feel right at home here nestled among these multi million dollar catamarans. Chris White catamarans are one of the rare forward cockpit designs similar to ours.
As usual we do have an extensive list of repairs, maintenance and additions to do on the boat before we head down to Southern Patagonia next season.
But before we dive into heavy boat work we need to get off the boat, stretch our legs, have a look around and get our visas renewed in Bariloche, Argintina.
03 April 2019
We are tucked into the lagoon here, waiting for a front to pass so we can head north. We were able to sail most of the way here, seeing several blue whales along the way. It's raining now, so we are collecting water. If we get enough we can make beer tomorrow if the weather is still contrary. Pray for rain.
PS: More photos have been added to the gallery
Bahia Tic Toc
29 March 2019
We just spend a wonderful 3 days in Bahia Tic Toc. We anchored at the base of a wide open valley. The scenery was stunning. The beaches are black sand studded with tuffs of marsh grass growing out of the water at high tide. There are meadows of tall swaying grass with perfectly placed pampas grass tuffs framing the rivers which flow-down from the surrounding mountains into the sea. Behind the grasses are bushy ornamental shrubs and flowering fuchsia trees scattering brilliant magenta patches through out. On the right side of the valley granite walls stand out boldly from tree covered cliff sides which look just like Yosemite and on the left side are the snow capped peaks of Mt. Yateles. Looking straight up the valley to the horizon are ice fields on distant glaciers. The sky was bright blue all day with not a breath of wind and at sunset the alpenglow beamed from all the peaks. Around the boat the entertainment was never ending. With the water being perfectly still we sat mesmerized watching huge bait balls of tiny 2 inch iridescent fish swarming all around and between the hulls of the boat. We could see swirling black clouds of schools approaching the boat from a distance as they attempt to escape the flurry of cormorants, seagulls, pelicans and penguins, feasting on the abundance. In the midst of all the action sea lions would come springing out of the water twirling and doing back flips joyfully playing with each other. The entire scene from the water to the sky was like a National Geographic documentary and we got to live there for 2 days.
Today we are motoring (again), back over to Chiloe. We'll stay in a few different anchorages, see a few wooden churches, do some desperately needed grocery shopping and hopefully make a break for heading north to Valdivia before the next forecasted weather front coming next Friday.
Caleta Poza de Oro
20 March 2019
It's been 5 days since we left Puerto Aguirre and we've stopped in three anchorages. On day 3 we traveled 52 miles from Isla Magdalena to Isla Manual, although not by choice. According to the forecast we should have ridden with a flood tide up the channel and have a westerly wind on our beam, instead we had our usual 1.5 knots of current against us and wind on the nose so it was a slow 35 mile slog up to our next anchorage. The Puyuhuapi canal that we were traveling up is very deep and anchorages are few and far between, so when we finally got to our destination and saw that two salmonera tenders filled the entire space we were in a quandary. It was 5pm and we could either sail 18 miles back down from where we came, or continue north bashing 13 miles into wind and current. We chose the latter. When we got to Caleta Manuel we thought fate had brought us to this magical place hidden deep inside a long narrow canal, it was way nicer then the first place. But what fate really intended for us was to work on our anchoring skills. Running 2 shore lines from the sterns to the trees in addition to a bow anchor is common in Patagonia because anchorages are often narrow and deep, and we needed to do that here. I'm supposed to drop the bow anchor and hold the boat steady while Mike rows the dingy back and forth to shore with the 2 stern lines, climbs up steep banks then ties them to trees, what could go wrong? While the wind had been calm as we entered the fiord, 18 knot gusts now came from behind, making it impossible to hold the boat steady, the dingy painter wrapped up in the port prop rendering it out of commission, and it was getting dark, but we did manage to secure ourselves and in the morning we got our reward. We nicknamed this anchorage Caleta Rorshack due to the incredible kaleidoscope of of images, created by the rocky shore and still water. We also saw a mink as we paddled along the shore under the overhanging trees.
These last 2 days up in Caleta Poza de Oro have been stress free with time to do chores, kayak into all the little nooks and rivers, nap and just stay put. We went for a 6 mile paddle this morning, letting the tide carry us up a shallow fiord past a herd of goats minded by a couple of dogs, while looking up the fiord at yet another snow capped peak. Plus Mike got to go for a swim again to free the line from the prop.
Just as this was going to press a small pod of Peales Dolphins entertained us by jumping and doing back flips in the bay just behind our boat.
17 March 2019
Puerto Aguirre is a tiny fishing village on one of a hundred tiny islands in the middle of canal Moraleda. This tiny village has a brand new tiny one dock marina, Marina Astral. Rum Doxy and Sea Rover ll were the only boats at the time, and we were treated like guests by Jaime, the marina manager. We spent 2 days at Marina Astral stretching our legs, checking out the town, replenishing the Dorito stash, visiting with our friends and of course fixing broken stuff.