Thursday, January 19, 2006

Jan 19-23 - Navimag

We took the morning bus from El Calafate back to Puerto Natales where we would be boarding the Navimag ferry this evening. We got into Puerto Natales around 2pm and then picked up our excess clothes, etc that we had left there before our hike, did laundry (which was very much needed) and got to spend a few hours hanging out with Shari and Eamon, who were just starting their trek through Torres del Paine the next day.

We boarded the ferry at around 9pm that night.

The Navimag ferry takes cargo and passengers from Puerto Natales to Puerto Montt through various channels and fjords along the coast of Chile. The whole trip takes abut 3.5 days. We had a cabin with 4 bunks which proved to be a little cramped if everyone wanted to stand up at the same time.

As we´ve learned, the weather in Patagonia seems to be changing all the time, and we only had one really nice day (day 2). We stopped in Puerto Eden and passengers had a chance to visit the town for an hour or two if they wanted. It was way too early for us, but we did get the chance to snap a few pics.

We got to see some impressive scenery, including a few more glaciers, some dolphins, and this wreck that grounded on a sandbar 40 years ago and now acts as a channel marker. We also managed to get through about 10 bottles of wine and a case or two of beer. Just what we needed to recover from all the hiking.

The afternoon/evening of day 2 was when we left the channels for a while and we´re in the open sea. Everybody was advised that the seas could be rough and if they thought they might get sick, they should take some sea sickness pills about 2 hours before we entered the open sea. This was taken about 5ish, after the pills had put pretty much everyone to sleep.

Wade and Casey took the opportunity to enjoy a few beverages, and to briefly take command of the bridge.


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