We've come a long ways, somewhere around 5,000km with all our shuttles
and what not.
This should be fun to explain at the border, three guys and six kayaks.
Neither Rok, Yoshi or I are at
all competent in Spanish. This actually works perfectly at the border,
because they don't want to deal with us, stamp the papers and wave us
though. Now we wait in Bariloche for the bus that is running on South
American time. As expected it shows up a few hours late and we go about
the business of renting a second car. We get a small suv kind of thing
but it has no rack. It's Sunday and every hardware store is closed, but
eventually a construction worker "borrows" a 2x4 from the job site for
us and we set to work making a rack out of it. Now it's time to get out
of town. We're told to expect four days of travel from Pucon to the Rio
Baker, and we're somewhere on "day one".
Ok let's get out of here.
We drive into the night and camp near a
river north of Esquel. We wake early and continue to drive.
We heed good advise and fill up whenever possible. Some time in the
afternoon we're in a dusty crossroads in the middle of nowhere.
A dusty crossroads with Hello Kitty ice
cream. Yoshi gets a good laugh out of this!
We may have made a wrong turn. Our map
has no detail and signs are lacking.
If you like big skies and empty
Late in the afternoon we pull into Chile
Chico for a border crossing. This drive is going much faster than
expected. This time our paperwork is flawless and we cruise through the
border. We're now on Lake General Carrera, the start of the Rio Baker.
It's just 100km further on dirt road, it's a big lake to put it lightly.
This seems fitting as we're more or less living in a Volkswagen
Some miles down the dirt road we've had enough and find a spot
sheltered from the wind, if not the rain.
The weather is true Patagonia, rain, wind and sun. All in under five
Hey nice mountains!
We've made it. From leaving the Gol Gol
it's been two full days of travel, plus a little bit more this morning.
Not bad at all. I guess that's the upside to the development of dams on
the Rio Baker, for a brief window the infrastructure will be better and
the river won't be decimated. Now it's time to scout the canyon and see
if we have enough time to run a river I've been dreaming about for
The team takes a look at Salto Neff. The color contrast of Rios Neff
and Baker is amazing.
We've driven much further than across the whole United States.