Thursday, February 25, 2010

Our Last Day in Patagonia

Our last day in Patagonia was relaxing. We needed some down time. Chase got up just in time to grab us a little breakfast before they closed for the morning. Everyone morning there was a slight drizzle but we decided to brave the weather and walk into town. Luckily the sun came out a little for our 45 minute walk and we got to enjoy the beautiful scenery.

our hotel

On our way into town Chase finally got to stop and see the Miladone up close. Apparently this statue is life size but as I mentioned before is extinct.

Even the signs in the town had pictures of the Miladone on it!

By the time we got into town both Chase and I where starving. When he stayed at the hotel in Puntas Arenas a cute couple told us we had to try the brewery. So for lunch we found the brewery and had a delicious lunch, completely by ourselves; meaning there was no one else in the whole restaurant. In Puerto Natales most people are gone during the day on different excursions so there are not many people around during the day.

After lunch Chase and I walked around town and looked in all the local shops. Everything for sale was made of alpaca or wood. It was fun to walk around town but there was not much to buy. We did see a knock off Wii and a huge pack of dogs.

We have no idea where they came from or how they survive the winter

We decided to walk back to the hotel instead of taking a cab but we had to hurry because we had to get back into town with our luggage to catch the bus back to Puntas Arenas.

The view on our way back, all the swans had white bodies and black necks and heads

The walk back took a little longer than expected most likely due to the fact that I kept stopping to look at everything one last time! So we had to really hurry in order to catch the bus back. Luckily we made it onto the bus which then drove us 3 hours to the airport. There we had to wait a few hours for our plane to depart. We finally arrived in Santiago at 1:30 in the morning and crashed once back in the apartment.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

The Glaciers of Patagonia

Chase and I absolutely love the water so we thought what better way to see a different part of Patagonia than by boat. So on our last full rainy cold day in Puerto Natles we woke up early and took a Taxi to the doc. Upon arriving we walked up to the boat and told them our name. The lady kept looking but our names were nowhere to be found. We had paid the night before so we were a little concerned. Luckily another crew member arrived with an updated list and thank goodness our name was on it. The boat was called Agunsa and was one of the nicest boats I have ever been on. All the seat where leather we had assigned seats and somehow despite intense winds and waves the boat staid relative stable and smooth.

Chase on the doc with the boat in the back ground

Chase and I in our seats on the boat

Enjoying a cup of tea

Our trip began through the beautiful Fjords even though it was raining we still got to enjoy the beautiful views. For a couple of minutes the weather cleared and we got to see a perfect rainbow.

Some birds that looked like a penguins but could fly. All the french people on the boats were pushing us out of the way to get pictures. It was pretty funny.

Chase was matching the crew so of course we had to take a picture, the best part is the crew had no idea what was going on!

The Fjords

When we finally arrived at the first glacier, the weather had turned particularily bad and most people decided to see the view from the warmth of the cabin. We however, decided to brave the cold and headed to get some pictures.

From here we continued up the Fjords to a national park island. Here we docked and took a 30 minute hike to see another glacier. It was nice to get off and strech our legs. We especially enjoyed getting to get closer to a glacier. Since we were two of the youngest people on the tour we quickly got about 5-10 minutes ahead of most of the people and enjoyed a nice time by the glacier without all the tourist standing around.

I had some many layers on long underwear, a fleece, a puff jacket and a raincoat and I was still cold!

While, we were there looking at the glacier we heard this loud cracking sound, then a huge chunk fell into the water and caused a large wave to start. It was one of the neatest things I have ever seen. During the process I actually tried to get a video and some pictures but I was so flustered that I did not do a very good job.

glacier falling

This was a crazy Argentinian who was wearing shorts

Different view of the glacier in the audience

Our boat is on the end

There was a second option take a zodiac up the river to Torres Del Paine, does that look like fun in the freezing rain? Luckily we stayed on the warm boat.

Chase finally had one of his wishes come true a scotch with glacier ice.

Don't worry I did not drink mine!

Chase took this picture in honor of my grandfather, Gpapa Chase wished you here to share a scotch. Gpapa is who first got Chase to drink Scotch.

Luckily in the afternoon the cloud finally cleared and the sun came out. We got to enjoy sitting on the back of the boat in the sun.

The boat dropped us off at a local cattle/ sheep ranch for lunch.

From the boat we walked up the hill to this cute little restaurant but before we went in to sit down we walked around back to see where they were cooking the lamb and have a pisco sour.

This is for captain Kirk, Chase's uncle

The crazy Argentinians with their portable mate' tea kit that they drank the whole time

view from the restaurant

The restaurant

The lamb

Chase having a deep conversation in Spanish with the Argentian

the waso, or chilean cowboy, in his very patriotic chilean flag shirt

our table at lunch was international with people from Germany, Argentina and the US

After lunch the boat company had cars to drive us back to Puerto Natales. I was so tired and could not wait to take a nap. Chase and I enjoyed a long nap before getting ready to go back into town for dinner.

While we were walking around Chase found this trash can and of coarse he had to have his picture with it.

we ended up eating dinner again at the italian restaurant, it just sounded good and we were so tired and not in the mood for another steak dinner.

Chase standing on top of our hotel

view from our hotel after dinner