Tortel to Cochrane


At Tortel I loaded up on supplies. This involved knocking politely on what looked just like someones house, only I had spied shelves of food through the window, and then asking in my finest spanish for oats, chocolate and one of each flavour of biscuits. To get bread I had to go to another house and knock on the window. The woman inside delved into a huge sack and brought out 6 homemade rolls for 10p each.

Biscuits and chocolate have a short shelf-life in my panniers and were, of course, devoured before the end of the day. As is the usual fashion hereabouts the road was in a dire pot-holed, washboarded, gravely and hilly state and there was a head wind. Nevertheless the sun shone all day and as the light faded I found a nice spot off the road and under some trees to pitch the tent with a mountain veiw and a river nearby.

The next day I set off hoping to make it to Cochrane and when I passed a lovely cycling couple from Belgium they confirmed it was 65kms so I had a sporting chance of getting there before nightfall. Being about the time of day we decided to retire to the dining room for lunchoen together. By which I mean we sat on the dirt and ate cheese sandwiches.

After a good chat and feed I hit the road again but changed my plan when, 15kms outside Cochrane, I chanced upon Lago Ezmeralda. It was a beautiful spot so I decided to camp there and save a nights camping fee in Cochrane.

Cochrane is a little bigger than Villa O'Higgins, the internet a fraction faster, and it has a nice feel about it. There is a supermarket which is ideal if you need to pop out and pick up some cereal, milk, an outboard motor, a chainsaw and some plastic toys. Truely everything you might ever need is on sale.

Brett arrived and we bought some steaks to bbq. Also, led astray, I bought some lavadura and some strawberry juice with which I intend to concoct a "special" christmas vino. Wish me luck!

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  1. hello Pete - sounds like you're having fun..lots of love Pxx

  2. Just testing this out...Villa O'Higgins and Cochrane both appear on my map.. as I map your route... Christmas only five days off - where will you be by then?? Pxx

  3. Those home-made rolls sound good... were they? What have you got lined up for Christmas lunch?? We'll miss you at out little villa in Altafulla but we'll be thinking of you "Happy Christmas" in advance! We have lots of snow here by the way...20cm! Pxx

  4. Hi Peter

    Nice to read about the Carretera, we still remember it very well :-)! lots of rain, wind, stones, but wonderfull landscape, millons of birds and plants!
    We're now back from the Torres del Paine, did the Circuit and enjoyed it very much. Hiking after so much cycling was great. Tomorrow we leave Puerto Natales to ride the last of our 13'000km...!
    Wish you a very nice trip and little rain!
    Was nice to meet you, already some weeks ago!
    Greets from Bettina and Raphael


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