_________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Marcy home Walvis Bay Angling Club club AFASyn Ushuaia Marcy and crew

Saturday, March 06, 2010

Lots of Wild Country, Few Small Towns

Cta Riofrio sunset

We enjoy the wilderness. We've often wondered as we cruised our home waters – what was it like before the pioneers, or even before people? Here in Southern Chile we get an idea of what that might look like. We have spent many days traveling without seeing a trace of mankind.

Marcy anchored Isthmus Bay

We saw no other boats, no towns, roads, power lines, no logged areas, no airplanes in the sky, no lights at night – only wilderness. The only sounds we heard that we did not make ourselves were birds, seals, frogs waves and wind. Only the occasional navigation marker and the daily radio contact told us that we hadn't somehow been transported back in time.

Pozo Omega anchorage

Of course, there is a sad history of why this area is so deserted. Two hundred years ago, the coast was the home of thousands of indigenous canoe people. Tough, warlike, and independent, they were virtually wiped out by the European newcomers and disease. The only trace we see today of them here are the names of geographical features such as Ushuaia.

Eden ferns

We have seen a lot of wildlife. Even some shy marine otters in quiet anchorages at sunset.

Point Lay seal rock

We passed a dead whale on the beach. Sad for the whale, but the albatrosses were very happy.

Cono whale

In one bay, hot water bubbled out of a spring near the beach. We made a hot tub using our inflatable kayak, piping in spring water through our awning battens. We cooled the water with buckets of seawater occasionally to keep from melting the kayak or boiling Ginger.

beach hot tub

We enjoy wilderness, yes, but when we came across one of the few small fishing towns we were very glad to greet people and see buildings again. Our eyes were happy to see bright colors after only seeing the browns, greens and blues of the wilderness for so long. As we approached the tiny fishing village of Eden, we saw the bright yellow fishing boats from a distance. We spotted the masts of a couple of other cruising sailboats, too.

Pto Eden main wharf

Our French friends Pierre and Amelie, who we first met in Brazil and hadn't seen for weeks, took our stern line as we approached the pier.

Kyre Pto Eden

We loaded fuel by siphoning from a drum on the dock. Ginger was stationed at the critical valve, ready to stop the transfer if anything went wrong. A friendly cat dropped down on Marcy's deck and kept her company.

Eden refueling

Fuel on board, we moved Marcy out to the anchorage and turned our attention to exploring the town.

Pto Eden at anchor

Some of the buildings were a bit ramshackle. And the waterfront supermarket didn't look very appealing.

mussel shack Pto Eden

Eden supermercado

A nice board walk connects the houses, with many small booths lining it. We thought maybe they were school bus shelters but there are no motor vehicles here. We never did find out what they are for.

Eden boardwalk

At one point there is a shrine for St. Peter, patron saint of fishermen, complete with a beautifully built model fishing boat. The Armada had filled out and posted a zarpe, paperwork all vessels need here in Chile for permission to leave port.

St Peter shrine

The pilot house door on the “Capitan Cristo” had a bright mural of a determined looking Christ driving his boat.

Capitan Cristo

As we walked along, Ginger was a magnet for all the cats.

Eden cat

We noticed a strange thing – there was no wind! And it wasn't raining! As we worked our way north, the weather has gotten much better. As we headed back out the next morning, we hoped the trend would continue. We'd like to order some wind from the south, we feel we've used enough diesel fuel for now!

Atun at anchor

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At 1:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wonderful pics, especially the last one.


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