TREKKING 

A new insight into the Puelo Valley

PROFILE
Away from touristic destinations. Local life experience

DURATION
4 DAYS

DIFFICULTY
Easy -Medium

ACCOMMODATION
Llanada Grande Lodge or SIM

SEASON
Ocotober - April

PRICE
U$ 1200 P/P

Puelo River Valley hiking.

"People are becoming more adventurous, seeking to be “temporary locals” when they visit new places. The tendency to adopt slow travel means visitors are staying in destinations longer, and more people are venturing out by themselves, driving an upswing in solo offerings from adventure tourism providers."

"Puelo River Valley is a binational basin born in Argentina on Lake Puelo flowing through the land to its mouth at the Reloncaví estuary the first great fjord of Chilean Patagonia that ends into the Pacific Ocean near the town of Rio Puelo east of the Puerto Montt city only 120 Km south of Puerto Varas in Los Lagos Region of Chile.

The Puelo River (mapudungún: It is in the East) is one of the 5 mightiest rivers of Chile its upper reaches drain out Lake Puelo forming the Lower Lake in Chilean territory and receives water from lakes Rocks Green Totoral Blue and Ventisquero River. In its middle course receives the Manso River the main tributary forming both Tagua Tagua lake to finish within Reloncaví estuary.The valley of the Rio Puelo is not only known for its extraordinary beauty but also for being rated as one of the best areas for Fishing Trout and Salmon besides offering natural environment an ideal for other activities such as hiking horseback riding, mountaineering rafting and mountain biking.Like a country lass of modest origins, the Río Puelo Valley remains unfazed by that massive industry called tourism, offering authentic, off- the-grid adventures. An ecotourism surge here in recent years has thus far warded off proposed hydroelectric dams (which would flood most of the valley), but the threat of development is always present. Fishing, trekking and horseback riding are king here and each offers days of satiating adventures in the area.

PROGRAMME

Day 1.Puerto Varas / Llanada Grande

The trip begins at your hotel where you will meet your guide and driver early in the
morning, load the vehicle to start a three hours drive, crossing the Valdivian forests along the Reloncaví Fjord across the volcano Osorno and Calbuco which last eruption was in 2015.
Arrive to the “Tagua Tagua” Lake. We will take some time for a great picnic lunch before crossing by ferry. Once we get off the ferry, we drive for another hour or so till we reach our lodge for the following three nights in the Puelo Valley. This is a family run bead and breakfast, Miss Blanca and Mr Sergio will be our hosts and look after us with great care and hospitality and of course green salads , cooked meals and freshly home made bread, free range eggs in the morning too!
We will take this first day at relaxed pace having the opportunity for photo stops, short hikes around to explore the area. Afternoon walk to the El Salto waterfall, these powerful waters provide electricity to the entire village of 1000 inhabitants. Briefing for the following days and evening meal at the lodge.
(BL, D)
Timing: 4/5 hrs by car, 30 minutes by ferry .Walk 1 hour o/w.
Difficulty level: easy.

Day 2.Lago Inferior- Los Hitos:

A good long day outdoors exploring the lakes, trails and rivers!
After a hearty breakfast we will depart with our trekking guide, gear passports and day back pack to the border, we will join the continuation of the international road by vehicle for 1 hour, passing by ancient forests and farming land. After reaching the pasarela bridge at the junction of the Puelo and Ventisquero rivers of emerald colors.
We will hike for an hour or so passing by secondary rivers which are born at the Andes from pristine
glaciers. Sustainable farming life here is like the pioneers days when people used horses as their way of traveling from village to village or simply visiting relatives and neighbour.
After crossing open pampas and forests we will reach the river bank where the boat will be waiting for us . Embark on a placid boat ride up waters to the border of the Inferior Lake. The trail turns up hill for about 30 minutes to reach the Carabineros headquarters at the border on undulating terrain used by locals and solo travelers who cross to Argentina enjoying stunning views of the Inferior lake and Las Rocas Lake. This is an important part of the walk since we need to give in our passport documents to continue hiking on no man’s land towards los Hitos.
Weather permitting for sailing conditions. The following hike would be:
This hike can be also done on reverse first sailing to the starting point at Los Hitos towards Carabineros.
Timing: 1 hr drive o/w. Boat ride : 1.15 hs o/w
We will reach the border withArgentina before we return by boat to Carabineros and get our passports back.
Late afternoon sail retracing the route back to our lodge for a good rest, some local tea and a fresh meal. (B,BL, D)
Distance : Walk 2,5 hour o/w.
Carabineros -Hitos hike: 3 hr walk.
3,2 miles. Max elevation: 1145 ft Minimum elevation: 544 ft. Elevation gain: 100 ft.

Day 3. Las Rocas Lake:

Our last full day outdoors will be along the Azul Lake and Las Rocas Lake, including a morning hike to the shore of the Azul lake , this unique lake has its name due to their blue color of their waters, pristine and lonely feeling of unspoilt region of the Puelo Valley, together with las Rocas ( the rocks) Lake conforms one of the highest lake systems in the region.(B,BL, D)
Timing: 1 hr drive o/w .Walk 2,5 hour o/w. Boat ride : 1hr

Day 4.Llanada Grande / Puerto Varas:

After breakfast we couldn’t leave our hosts Doña Blanca and Sergio with out letting them showing their organic orchards and touring around the ranch learning their secrets about organic farming.Free time to explore before driving back to Puerto Maldonado to catch the 4.30 Pm ferry back and drive Puerto Varas at 7. 30 pm. End of our services.

Includes:

• Private transport from Hotel in Pto Varas to Llanada Grande, all ground transportation, boat rides and ferry crossing.
• 3 night accommodation al Lodge In Llanada Grande
• 3 full home made dinners at the Lodge.
• 4 Box Lunch for all days trekking and exploring the region .
• A specialized private guide during the whole trip.
• First Aid Kit .VHF radio.

Excluded:

Other transfer not mentioned in the programme. Tips . Travel Insurance-
Laundry services

Packing and clothing:

FOOTWEAR
__ 1 pair of lightweight waterproof hiking boots
__ 1 pair of comfortable shoes for general use
__ 2-3 pairs of hiking socks (wool or synthetic equivalent: Smartwool, Thorlo,
Darn Tough)

CLOTHING
__ 2 pair of comfortable supplex/nylon long pants for hiking - zip-offs work well
----1-2 pairs of shorts (one should be quick-drying nylon)
__ 1 synthetic or lightweight merino wool T-shirts or short-sleeved shirts
__ 1lightweight, long-sleeved shirts for hiking - button up front is the best __ 1 pair lightweight long underwear top – silk, wool or synthetic equivalent __ 1 pair lightweight/midweight bottoms - silk, wool or synthetic equivalent __ 1 medium-weight top layer – synthetic or wool pull over - fleece or wool
vest works well for this layer
__ 1 warm fleece or lightweight down jacket
__ 1 rain jacket and rain pants – waterproof/breathable fabric like Gore-tex -
not a plastic poncho
__ Underwear/nightwear
__ 1 pair wool, Capilene, or Polartec gloves
__ 1 warm/lightweight wool or fleece hat
__ 1 wide brimmed or baseball style hat for protection from the sun/rain __ 1 – 2 changes of casual clothes to wear at end of day

Weather:

During spring and summer season the Puelo Valley provides with warm days of temperature above 19 C (66 F) during the day, reaching temperatures of 28 C.(82,4 F) Nights are cool and friendly with temperatures between 10 (50 F) and 18 C (64,4 F).
Some rain and windy days are possible as well as summer storms in January or February.

Animals and Safety:

• Farming environment.
Is important to notice that our farming environment in the Puelo Valley is
part of our culture, people love their pets, like cats, dogs, sheep, cattle and horses. Is important to acknowledge this in case of hay fever or animal allergies.
Although bats are vectors of rabia, Chile is a free rabia country since 2010.
• Insects:
The fly has a striking reddish-orange coloration on the side of its thorax and abdomen. It is generally around 2 cm. in adult size.
Like most species of horse flies, the females of Scaptia lata need to feed on mammalian blood before they can produce eggs, they are well known for the disturbing wing sounds and bites of females.
• Crossing rivers:
There are no proper bridges to cross rivers nor streams, is important to be
aware that some river crossing will be just walking over logs or just stones with the help of walking sticks. Usually the level of the water is low during this time of the year but in case of extreme rain, rivers raise and make the crossing more difficult.

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