Cruising Lago Todos los Santos
Trip Start Feb 26, 2012
36Trip End Apr 02, 2012
Our second attempt to get good weather to do the boat trip across Lago Todos los Santos, and while it is not perfect, we decide to go anyway
There was an interesting mix of people on the boat trip……some local Chileans who obviously use it as transportation and tourists who are just out for the day, and then there are tourists who use this as the first leg of a trip which includes a total of 3 boat rides and 3 bus rides to get to Bariloche, Argentina. If you have seen the movie Motorcycle Diaries you will recognize this as the trip Che Guevara took from Argentina to Chile. Today our boat goes directly to the other end of the lake about a 2 hour ride, but sometimes they make several stops along the way. This lake is in Parque Nacional Vicente Perez Rosales, with approximately 180 privately owned properties around the lake and with 85 school age children. These children go to a boarding school at one end of the lake and on the first trip each Monday their parents row the kids out to a designated spot on the lake and the boat we are on picks them up and then drops back off to their parents in their row boats on Friday afternoon-now that is a ride to school that not many kids can claim they do
The ride was lovely. We were on a very stable power catamaran which was 32 meters long and had seats of the style found on an airplane. There was of course an area to buy souvenirs and a coffee shop. We did have a coffee but the Chileans started drinking the ubiquitous red wine by 11 AM! The lake was beautiful-an emerald green color with thickly forested mountains all around the edge with volcanos in the background. It was a very relaxing ride. And we were so fortunate, as this time the person doing the commentary provided an English version too!
Once we reached Puerto Peulla at the other end of the lake, we walked around a bit and then settled ourselves at the Hotel Natuera for lunch. We had very nice fish and vegetables in the beautiful dining room overlooking the wetlands with the lake, mountains and volcanos in the background. It was raining after lunch so we just moved to the large lobby area, complete with a huge fireplace and sat to wait for the return trip
We arrived back at the car and decided to make one stop on our way back to Casa Ko’-at a waterfalls, Saltos de Petrohue ….very nice and one of the must-see stops in this area of Chile. Funny thing at the gate as Bob finished paying the entrance fee the attendant held up a calculator with 6.5 entered on the screen and then drew his hand across his throat. We took his meaning to be the gates close at 6:30, it was then 6:25. We did a fast trot down the 500 meter path.
Back at Casa Ko’, Pauline advised us that she had invited friends of theirs to join us for dinner. Very interesting evening, as the woman (originally from Massachusetts but now lives in a house on the same mountainside as Pauline and Raf) is a writer for the Lonely Planet series of guidebooks. She specializes in writing about Patagonia. We had a lively discussion on many topics, including of course the US Republican race. She keeps up to date on the goings on in the US by listening to NPR (National Public Radio) online and misses having political discussions. She had brought the dessert….we weren’t sure what the fruit was but it was a delicious cross between a crisp and a pie-yummy! It was a fun evening and that was another day in our Chile experience!