Day 1 : The meanders of the lower Petrohue river.
Meet your guide at your hotel in Puerto Varas at 8:30 and we enjoy a scenic drive along lake Llanquihue to our base in Ensenada (40 min). We get the kayaks ready and begin the packing for the trip. All our gear and food is coming along with us in dry bags inside the dry hatches of the expedition kayaks. Twenty minutes of driving later and we reach our put in for today. We are on the Petrohue river bank, ready to get on these calm waters floating down away from the civilization. We enjoy great lookouts from the river and might meet Kingfishers, Trouts and Salmons in this wide valley. The soft current pushes us downstream and helps us making miles today. Lunch is on the river bank and depending on the day this might be a good excuse for a swim.
In the afternoon we reach Ralún Hot springs where the river narrows and flows through a basaltic gorge. We soak between these natural pools and the refreshing river. Then the valley opens up on the northernmost fjord of Patagonia: Reloncavi fjord. This is where we have the chance to spot dolphins playing in the current made by the river pushing against the tide. One more mile to go and we reach our campsite for tonight on the fjord bank. The green meadow where we build up the tents is on Señora Yolanda farm house.
After getting changed to dry clothes we head to her house and meet the family. She lives here with her son Juan Carlos and we get to know a bit more of their lifestyle after the first round of “mates” beside the wood stove. Dinner will be served in the house with locally grown lamb, fresh catch and garden vegetables. There are god exchanges around the table and the glasses of red wine. Overnight under the stars camping on the bank. Meals included (L / D).
Day 2 : Paddling the fjord.
After a great night we are back at the house for breakfast. Freshly pressed coffee, quesadillas and eggs from the farm to make sure we will have plenty of energy for the paddling day. We have time for a short walk around the property with our hosts before we repack our kayaks and get on the water.
We are in front of Yates and Hornopiren volcanoes, morning paddling conditions are normally quiet and we might encounter today sea lions and cormorans on our way. We stay on the western shoreline of the fjord until we reach the Bay of Cochamó where the fjord opens up. We paddle then along the village of Cochamó and towards the entrance of the Cochamó river. We stop for lunch on the mouth of the river with great views to the Andes around. Cochamó valleyis a well (known spot for climbers and trekkers and we are at the foot of these walls). We paddle upstream for a couple of kilometers on the river, this hardwork will be rewarded by a swim in this “freezing” crystal clear waters. This is also where we meet our van and begin our trip back to Puerto Varas after these 2 days in paradise.
Back in town around 18:30. Meals Included (B / L).