Edit Blog Post
Published: March 22nd 2016
This morning we docked in Puerto Montt on a very glum and overcast day. Apparently Puerto Montt's claim to fame is that two of Chile's 20 active volcanoes are on its doorstep. Unfortunately we couldn't see either of them as we rode the tenders to shore this morning.
Bernie booked an independent tour operator for today and those arrangements went without a hitch with us finding our guide, Patty, and our driver, Pedro, easily on the dockside. One of the passengers who had booked this tour left a message on our cabin phone to say that his name is Gerry and he's in cabin bleep, bleep, bleep. Unfortunately the space available for the message ran out before he gave us his details. Another passenger on the tour is a Holland America frequent traveller so he had preferential access to the tenders to take him ashore this morning. The only problem was that meant that he waited dockside for an hour before the rest of us were brought across on a (much) later tender!!
Our first stop was in downtown Puerto Montt where Patty pointed out the timber built German church and told us about the volcanic eruption that they
experienced in May 2015. Patty had postcards of the volcano (which we couldn't see) and of last year's eruption which looked massive. Apparently the city was very lucky not to be overwhelmed with volcanic ash because the prevailing winds carried the ash cloud towards Argentina rather than down over the city.
From the city centre we drove out along the shore of Lake Llanquihue that is backed by the Osorno volcano. Allegedly ... it was staying well hidden in the low hanging cloud! We stopped at a gift shop along the lake side where we were able to photograph llamas seeing as we couldn't see the volcano.
Our next stop was at the Petrohue River one of Chile's most beautiful and exciting glacial rivers. It certainly looked much more beautiful than the Urubamba River in Peru. The Urubamba was a pretty ugly mud filled river. The Petrohue River was a beautiful aqua colour thanks to the glacial grist in the water. A little further up river found us at the Petrohue Falls/Cascades. Apparently this used to be a waterfall, but following erosion over the years it has smoothed out more into a cascade rather than a true waterfall.
Next we headed onto the Emerald Lake where we almost caught a glimpse of the left hand shoulder of the elusive volcano. We made one more stop at the Laguna Verde which is a lake that has formed in an old volcanic crater. While we were there we saw an American Mink which was quite exciting. And we know that it was an American Mink because there was a biologist there observing it and when we exclaimed over it - look, is it an otter? - she told us it was an American Mink.
We drove back to the port by way of Puerto Varas (the City of Roses) or maybe it should be the City of Adventure Clothing Shops?? I think all the outdoor shops were there: Columbia, North Face, etc.
Back on board we watched the crew bring the tenders in. Well, we watched them raise and stow No. 12 because that's our life boat so that one's important! We noted on the side that the vessel takes 90 tender passengers, but 150 lifeboat passengers. We reckon it must be pretty cosy with 150 passengers aboard. Hopefully we won't get to find out just how
Steps 9,271 (6.72km)
Tot: 2.6s; Tpl: 0.021s; cc: 13; qc: 30; dbt: 0.0255s; 2; m:saturn w:www (18.104.22.168); sld: 1;
; mem: 1.3mb