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10 days Sea kayaking Northern Patagonia Fiords -Pumalin Park

Northern Patagonia Fiords
 

Description
Itinerary
Includes

Requirements
Observations
Reservations

This area is known as Pumalín Park...one of the largest, untouched private parks in the world with aprox. 320.000 hectareas , the last virgin forests in Southern Chile and also known as the Northern Patagonia Fjords.

The Area:

Cutting deep into the granite peaks of the coastal Andes, the Quintupeu, Cahuelmó and Comau Fjords that make up the Pumalín National Park provide the most spectacular sea kayaking experience in Northern Patagonia. Hot springs, sea lion and dolphin colonies, lush temperate rainforest and hundreds of cascading waterfalls are all features of our journey.

When the Spanish arrived in Chiloé in the 16th century, they found the islands and continental fjords populated by a seagoing people known as Chonos, who paddled canoes known as dalcas. Fabricated from three sewn boards, these dalcas held 10 or 12 people and were, in according to early chroniclers, the most seaworthy craft in the islands.

Cahuelmo Hotsprings at the end of the fjord

Our trip starts from Puerto Varas, a city located 1,000 km south of Santiago. We will travel through the Northern Austral Highway (Carretera Austral) , with it's picturesque fishermen's villages and we will cross the Reloncaví Estuary by ferry here at the first fiord of Patagonia. 

On our journey we will see antique wooden ports covered by larch and we will enjoy the view of the Hornopirén Volcano with the snow covered summits of Yates Mt. in the background. To the south, in front of the town of Hornopirén and in the midst of the fiord you will be able to appreciate the  isla de los Ciervos . We will continue our trip deep into the fiord, crossing the turbulent waters of the Blanco River, to continue on our journey passing by a cliff with an imposing rock wall and an estuary. 

crossing the first Patagonia Fjords

Finally, the Comau Fiord appears in front of us cleared by tall mountains and rugged riversides, the place where we are going to board our kayaks and start the adventure through the Comau, Quintupeu and Cahuelmó fiords, inserting ourselves in the spectacular scenery of the Hornopirén National park and Pumalin Park.

...The only way to access these fjords is by water as no road exist ..

We will paddle through unforgettable places. Hanging forests, enormous waterfalls that fall directly into the sea, gigantic walls of rock disappearing into the water, fumaroles and natural hot springs, endless cliffs, colonists and their histories, hidden lagoons, birds, dolphins, sea lions and incredible hiking trails crossing rivers to arrive at hidden lagoons...you could be our companion on this exciting trip through the Chilean Patagonia. 

Kayaking Patagonia Fjords


kayaking Pumalin Park

SPECIFICATIONS
Level *Advanced beginner or low intermediate
*Active travelers.
(includes practice on day two)

Zone

Patagonia
Duration

10 days

Options 6 days
4 days

*New Trip !!
6 Days Full Fjords Seakayak Expedition
Time of year October to May
Dates

Calendar

Price Please ask
Trip details Start and finish in  Puerto Varas.
N° Participants 6 participants
Lodging Camping plus interaction with real pioneers .
Itinerary See itinerary
Weather Min Temperature  : 4°C
Max Temperature  : 18°C

*Weather in this region
Photo
Opportunities
Volcanoes, big falls, rock walls and dense vegetation, hot springs, dolphins and sea lions.
Combinations
(not included)

-Trekking in Vicente Perez Rosales National Park.
-Horseriding Cochamo Valley
-Floating Maullin and Petrohue River.
-Visit Chiloe Island , Frutillar and Puerto Octay towns.
-Osorno volcanoe trekking (1 day)

Activities Sea kayaking practice and night navigation, hiking, hot springs and intense cultural interaction with pioneers (colonos)
Suggested gear Please ask
Getting there Fly from your country to Santiago-Chile and from there 2 alternatives:

1)Bus - aprox 12 hours from Santiago to Puerto Varas town
(www.turbus.cl)

2)Airplane - about 2 hours from Santiago to Puerto Montt airport
(www.lanchile.com)
Related info
Satelite Photograph
Nautical chart (226 kb)
TRIP PHOTO GALERY & Check our Facebook - Album
 

Revista Outdoors

Article:

"En Kayak de Mar por el Parque Pumalin"

“... a unique untouched piece, an unforgettable adventure, and a fascinating experience of the culture, East of the Golfo de Ancud ... "

... All these ...and just for few people ...

Northern Patagonoia Fjords in Pumalin Park



What makes this holiday different?


* * Our focus is in cultural based-adventures and authentic experiences by interacting in the areas of the fjords with the local people and their culture.

* Your trip leader and owner of the company will make his best effort to offer the best expefrience possible and safe , certified as a BCU 4Star by the British Canoe Union of England and certified as by the American Canoe Union as a ACA Seakayak Instructor Level 4 with more than 15 years guiding seakayak expeditions in Patagonia and more than 120 trips in the area of the Fjords of Pumalin Park.

* We want to do more than what appears in the program mainly because we enjoy what we do and we want that you return with lots of memories and good moments.

* Our SMALL group size - maximum of 6 - ensures this is a low impact trip . Our main concern is group safety but also a great respect for the local people we will visit during the trip.

* The trip is self-supported - meaning that we don´t use a support boat , offering us freedom of movement and the possibility to vary our program at any given moment. Our experience running seakayak trips in this area since 1998 with an average of 10 trips per season plus a powerful network of fishermen friends give us the support in an area that is always changing.

* We use locally produced and fresh products as much as possible and always in preference choose local over imported goods.

* We will make our best effort to try to show you the best part of this area , not only the wildlife ... it´s beautiful people.

* We pack out all waste and minimize this by using products with minimum packaging, leaving no litter and keeping all water sources clean.

* Our guides hold informal talks with groups to inform about and discuss with them all aspects of local life. This helps understanding of the area and appreciation of the people who live there.

Consider also that this is a good opportunity to practice your spanish with our local guides and the local people we will meet during our trips.


We are supporting the community by providing books for children of the local school of the Northern Patagonia Fjords , our main destination

This is a true sea kayaking expedition where our participants will learn exactly what that means. We are going to be paddling in an aerea where the weather plays an important role and the tides and winds are elements that has to considered. This is an active trip where every participant will have to share duties and have a positive attitude.

Our trips not only take you through unforgettable scenery , but you will go home with fond memories of the time you spend with the local fishing pioneers families.


" We invite to live the history of this place more than just reading it "

.

Itinerary

Day 1:
(Puerto Varas/ Puerto Montt : Trip Logistics - Scenic driving Carretera Austral - Comau Fjord in Pumalin Park)


Camino Carretera Austral  a los Fiordos

At 10:00 AM we will meet in an hotel in Puerto Varas. This is a small and pleasant city 20 km north of Puerto Montt, located next to Llanquihue lake and in front of Osorno Volcano (2652m) and 1,000 km south of Santiago .

Here we will meet the members of the group and receive a complete explanation of the trip, it´s logistic, how to use the radios, flares, satellite phone, etc , information about the tides and winds and their influence in our navigation, potential hazzards, rescue procedures, isolation terms and possibilities of comunication, etc. Time for lunch (optional) and for last minute buys.

We meet again at 3:00 PM, at the same hotel, to start our trip inmediately. We will have to drive for about 5 hours starting in the extreme north of the Carretera Austral, with a view of the beautiful coastal towns and the small islands. It will be necessary to use ferry boat to cross the Reloncaví Fiord, the first fiord of Patagonia. 

“To the south of Puerto Montt, Chile breaks up into a number of islands with deep fiords which allow the sea to touch the Andes ”.

Fiordos Patagónicos Parque Pumalín


The trip will continue south till the town of Hornopirén, and from there driving in a 3rd class road, surrounded by cliffs till our campsite at Comau Fiord. Dinner with colonos family (pioneers) and their stories about life in this area 70 years ago. (D)

enjoying the paddlingDay 2:
(Seakayak Practice - Sealion Colony - Hotsprings)


After breakfast we will start with an intense general seakayak practice of paddling strokes and rescue techniques that we will practice then in the sea. We will continue navigating west to enjoy a small sealion colony and then continue in between some islands to LLancahue Island (if the weather allows) where we will enjoy hot springs on the shore of the Pacific (Box Lunch at the hotsprings).

Return for dinner with our the family . We will talk about the new logistics and prepare for the expedition.
Camp at Comau Fiord (B-BL-D)

Dresden German Destroyer - World War I
Day 3:
(Seakayaking Quintupeu Fjord - hike to huge Waterfall)


Early in the morning , after breakfast we will fill the kayaks with all the gear for this self-supported trip and head for the Comau fiord.

From this day ahead we will be always paddling in between 3 volcanoes (north: Yates and Hornopirén Volcanoes and south , Michimahuida volcanoe).

After some hours, the Quintupeu fiord will appear. It is here where the Dresden, a 3,600-ton light cruiser, one of the fastest ships in the German Imperial Navy , was hidden during the World War I.

We will be entering to our favorite fiord.....huge waterfalls oming directly to the sea, dense vegetation everywhere, enormous walls dissapearing in the water.

At the entrance we will stop for a short hike , walking upstream a river in order to reach the place where the waterfall borns. 


Fiordo Quintupeu


At the end of the fiord there is a river which we will try to explore by kayak, depending on the tide and camp with a marvelous view of the Anden mountain and its glaciers... just in front of us.  (B-BL-D)



Day 4:
(Seakayaking till Cahueló Fjord - Sealion Colony - Hotsprings)
visiting a sealion colony at Cahuelmo fjord
Very early, practically at night if requiered, we will start paddling, because this is the day we will need to paddle in a section more exposed, although it is still inside the fiord. After 2 hours, we can see an island in the distance and the Ancud Gulf behind it. We are continuously paddling close to the coast where we can enjoy the dense vegetation until the entrance of the next fiord. 

Just as we enter the fiord, we are presented with a surprise... a colony of sea lions. We will pass by without making a noise so that we can get close and take pictures without bothering them. 

 

relaxing at  Cahuelmo HotspringsThe best of the day is yet to come...since we do not have much further to paddle we will be able to paddle slowly and take advantage of the opportunity to explore the coastline of the fiord.

We will enjoy the view of the mountain's walls falling directly into the sea and later, rewarded with the Cahuelmó hot springs at the end of the fiord. 

" Imagine arriving to a beach where you can see vapor rising directly from the pools "

This will be a moment to relax ourselves and forget about everything...while enjoying the sunset, with a glass of wine and a camera in hand. Campsite.  (B-BL-D)


treking in PatagoniaDay 5:
(Cahuelmo Hotsprings - hike - more Hotsprings)


After enjoying our breakfast we will be ready to start the next adventure…..hiking towards Abascal lake….if we can find the trail existing in this thick vegetation.

It will be necessary to cross some branches of the river and walk considering the tides otherwise all that we walk through at the beginning will be covered by the sea. The rewards …..a new perspective of an untouched area where few people have been before. We will return on time for a relaxing bath at Cahuelmo Hotsprings . Campsite. (B-BL-D)

Day 6:
(Paddle till Huinay village - Hike) :


Very early in the morning, with the tide in mind and before the wind appears we will continue our paddling at Comau fjords heading for the settlement of Huinay where we will setup our campsite , visit the town , some local fishermen friends and hike in a place that is just starting to be open for authorized people as it is a huge private reaserch area. Dinner with a local fisherman family (B-BL-D)

enormous waterfallDay 7:
(Paddling and trekking till Geysers)

This day, after paddling from Huinay to the west shore of the Comau fjord we will start a new adventure...trekking in a real rainforest jungle . Giant trees, amazing views, cliffs, suspended wooden local bridges, slippery paths, some river crossings.. till the geysers. (obviously this will depend on weather conditions / density of vegetation / conditions of the trail, level of tghe river)

Return in the afternoon to our campsite in the western shore. Dinner with a local fisherman family..(B-BL-D)


Day 8:
(Seakayaking till Pocelana Hotsprings)

Breakfast , paddle the eastern shore , beautiful waterfals falling directly to the sea , fjord crossing , and seakayaking till Porcelana Hot springs, located ina particular creek where hot water emerges from the temperate rain forest.. Relax and enjoy hiking in the area . Campsite and dinner with a fisherman local family. (B-BL-D)



Day 9:
(Seakayak Vodudahue river - Hotsprings) :we paddle even if it rains

Waiting for the tide we will start our sea kayak exploration of Vodudahue river which will lead us to a totally different landscape of valleys enclosed by granite walls and hanging glaciers. We have to consider that if it rains a lot, the river , although flat, will increase it´s volume so probably the logistics can be modified.

Return to campsite at Porcelana Hotsprings. Dinner with a local family. (B-BL-D) 

Day 10:
(Complete navigation of Comau Fjord by Boat - Lunch - return to Puerto Varas):


Very arly in the morning , almost at night, a local fisherman boat will appear to bring us back navigating Comau Fjord, the main fjord in Pumalin Park. After some hours we will arrive in Hornopirén where we will have lunch in a confortable Hostería , and start the return to Puerto Varas. (B-L).

*Consider an extra day for your reservations/air ticket just in case weather problems that could delay our arrival to Puerto Varas. 

Weather
Consider that although is spring or summer in Chile...we have to be prepared for the rain. The summer months, middle December , January , February middle March are generally very pleasant, although it could rain at any given moment. The temperatures during January and February fluctuate, according to the weather, between the 50°s F and 80°s F, and the 40° F or 50° F. The temperature of the sea has an average of  50º F during the summer.

The area we will be paddling in can have a tide change of up to 6m (18 feet), which implies that the sea may withdraw several thousand meters, offering variable landscapes along the day.  This also requires a very complex logistic to be combined with the wind schedule and steep shores, which involves night or pre-dawn paddling but mainly an adventuroues spirit, possitive attitude and lots of teamwork.

Location
The Ancud Gulf is relatively a small body of water between Chiloé island and the continent, approximately  42°15"S, 73°W. This area makes up the northern part of the Chilean Patagonia. The fiords are along the continental side of the gulf, before the Huequi peninsula, while the islands are found on the east margin of Chiloé. 

What do we offer ? trekking Cahuelmo Fjord

A self sufficient sea kayaking trip... a real sea kayaking trip through Patagonia... which combines true adventure, security, freedom, challenge and multicultural experiences amongst a spectacular scenery: the Patagonia Fjords. 

This trip is run directly by the Director of YAK EXPEDICIONES...meaning that we will try to offer our best effort in order that you enjoy your holidays.

Includes
  • SMALL EXPEDITION GROUPS, maximum of 6 (safety and respect for the local people we visit) 
  • Intense interaction with the habitants of the area. 

  • Complete safety-talk and seakayak practice in the sea before departure, about paddling and rescue maneuvers. 
  • Transportation in private van from  Puerto Varas, traveling the Northern Carretera Austral until the point where we will initiate our navigation at Comau Fiord and return to Puerto Varas. 
  • Reloncaví Fiord navigation (ferry boat).
  • Food during the trip according to program (from dinner Day 1 till Breakfast Day 11)
    B: breakfast ; BL: lunch (sandwich, fruits, trail food) ; D: Dinner 
  • Navigation Equipment: Single and double sea Kayaks imported from the USA and Germany, expedition models, with original rudder, spray skirt, paddles, life jackets, paddling jackets. 
  • Cooking equipment and group tarp. 
  • Hiking (Day 2, Day 3, Day 4 and 5, Day 7 and 10).
  • Visit 3 different hotsprings during the trip: Cahuelmó(2 nights) , Llancahué and Porcelana. 
  • Local fishing boat , just for returning to Hornopirén.
  • Group safety equipment: Satellite telephone, Marine VHF Radio tide table and satellite photos.. 
  • Guide: Juan Federico Zuazo - Director of YAK EXPEDICIONES , BCU 4 STAR Sea Award , english speaking, first aid and rescue knowledge  (NOLS Course and Wilderness First Responder Course).
  • Limited insurance once the seakayak trip starts with Interamericana Insurance Company (chilean company)
Requirements
  • Swimming expertise.
  • Previous experience in kayaking and camping recommended.
  • Team members should have the mindset that they are responsible for themselves and the other members of the team while in the backcountry and around camp.
  • You'll find your trip even more enjoyable if you remember to bring flexibility and a sense of humor with you.
  • Physical state and health compatible with the activity to be performed
  • Previous indication of any illness or health problem 
  • Strictly abide by the indications of the guides during the trips 
  • Positive mental attitude in front of unexpected situations
  • Understand that this trip requiered a lot of team work and the participation of each person at each stage is fundamental.  
  • Understand that all activities performed in nature can indicate some risk. 
  • The program could be modified at any stage due to weather conditions , guide decision that could affect the safety of the group 

    HOW CAN I PARTICIPATE IN THIS TRIP ?

  • Before the trip you must send by fax and signed the Release of Liability Form that appears in this link.
  • To have read and have a clear understanding of the Terms and Conditions section existing in our web site.
  • Every participant must send the Reservation and Medical Form that appears after you press this button.
    Reservar
  • Pay the trip


    Special Discount !!
    if you bring a group of minimum 4 person. We can coordinate a "special departure date" for your group.
Observations
exploring and  discovering
  • The trip has been planned with the consideration of those without previous experience. Before we begin our great trip, on Day 2 we will have a complete discussion and practice session covering rescue techniques and paddling maneuvers so that our participants feel more comfortable during the trip and can really enjoy the beautiful views that they encounter. Our 2nd day will be developed paddling in a protected area... with a destiny of soothing hot springs. 
  • Hospitals and Professional First Aid Care are very far from the place where we will be navigating. Participantes must be healthy and in good physical conditions
  • You have chosen Patagonia , a place where the weather is unpredicatble, so we can have sun but also rainny days , very relaxing days but also windy conditions.
  • As an average we will paddle 4-5 hours.
  • Please read our Conditions section about Cancellation,Modification and Evacuation protocols.

RESERVATION

AFTER  you press the RESERVATION button, send us an email specifying:
- Your Name , age
- Name of the trip you want  (number of days)
- Number of participants
- Date of the trip you want (and your availability)

* we will send you a Reservation and Medical Forms that you have to send us back by email

 


   
 
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