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wehl’s Travel Diary

Saturday, 11 Nov 2006

Location: Pucon, Chile

MapSpent the past 4 days in Pucon, in the heart of Chile´s lakes district - absolutely beautiful landscape set amongst the snow capped Andes, volcanoes and multiple glacier fed lakes that are crystal clear.

Activities inclued:
< mountain bike ride over 40kms through incredible countryside - passing little farms and native Indian communes, native rainforests, many rivers / strems and waterfalls, arriving at Lake Caburga for a packed lunch

< Hiking in Huerquehue National Park - one of our highlights. Hiked the main mountain (over 1000m) which is set on Lake Tinquilco - another pristine glacier fed lake. National park contains 17 small lakes, and is covered by ancient native forests and has some of the oldest Araucaria trees in Chile.

< Trekking Villarrica Volcano (2840m) - one of the last active volcanos in South America, last errupted in 1971.
Seriously challenging - dressed in full mountain trekking gear (snow boots, waterproof jumpsuits, helmets, ice picks and gas masks) we took off up the volcano with our local guides. After 4-5 tough hrs of climbing in single file, following one another´s steps, fighting off the gale force winds, we reached the top!!
Looking over the crater, we could see the magma bubbling. Turing around, we could see Chile´s entire lakes district.
Fantastic day.

Caught the overnight bus back to Santiago on Saturday after our climb to stay with Marcella and Jorge before heading across the border to Mendoza, Argentina on Monday.