Crusing Chilean Fjords and Torres del Paine National Park

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Hi,
Does anyone know where I can obtain information about cruising this part of the world. There seems to be very little information easily accessible. I heard that the Chilean Government was introducing a License system?

If anyone could point out where I can find resources on this matter.

thanks
M
 

Kukri

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Hi,
Does anyone know where I can obtain information about cruising this part of the world. There seems to be very little information easily accessible. I heard that the Chilean Government was introducing a License system?

If anyone could point out where I can find resources on this matter.

thanks
M

Easy: Ask Frank Holden, right here.
 

Metabarca

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If you cruise the Chilean fiords, the Prefectura Naval will want to know exactly where you are and you are only permitted to stick to a few routes, simply because the area is so vast and the resources so few that it would be impossible to find you if necessary (in WW1, after, all the Germans hid a whole cruiser for several months here and were never found, despite the best efforts of RN). There is effectively no sailing in the Puerto Montt area; you'll be motoring. Exit point for entry into Argentina is Puerto Williams. While there, don't miss out on the Micalvi, the sunken German boat that serves as yacht club. You MUST go to Puerto Williams to check out even though you pass Ushuaia on the way; the Chileans are sticklers for the rules. The Argentiniains are far more relaxed.
THere's an excellent pilot book by an Italian couple that covers all of the Patagonian coast, Atlantic to Pacific. It shows all the anchorages, places to buy supplies etc. I can send you the details if interested.
As for the Torres del Paine park is concerned, on the seaward side, I reckon all you will see is wooded hills; to visit the glories of the park, you will need to go to Puerto Natales (probably safest mooring is further north near the former meat refrigerator). From PN there are daily buses into the park. Once into the Beagle channel, don't miss Seno Garibaldi and others for the glaciers tumbling into the sea.
Anyway, more information if you need it! I've been 12 times to Patagonia (not all at sea)! It's an extraordinary place!
 

Frank Holden

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Some stuff of mine here that may be of interest.. http://www.cruiserswiki.org/wiki/Chile

Re the park.... yes there are restrictions there these days due to the large numbers of people now wanting to visit... more here https://torresdelpaine.com/en/ and here http://www.parquetorresdelpaine.cl/upload/files/Lista de Senderos_2016_2017.pdf



As a result increasing numbers are going to Isla Navarino for their Patagonian trekking experience. When I first arrived in Williams in 2005 there were 5 Twin Otter flights to and from Punta Arenas a week..... now there is a jet on 4 or 5 days of the week.... the Twin Otter on the others. Demand for shore accomodation is such that in season US$100 is the norm.

Sailing? Winter is the best time.... fewer punters.... better weather.... colder but drier and not as much wind.
There is brilliant sailing to be had out of Montt where I am currently based but I budget on motoring for 1000 of the 1400 miles between there and Williams.

Below... getting to and from Williams... then and now.... and rafted up near Calbuco in late June....

Feel free to ask about anything else you want to know...
 

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Great stuff Frank... many thanks. I’ll read and digest but by the sounds of it by the time I’m able to afford to venture there I think they’ll be Disney cruise ships sailing around...
 

Metabarca

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The pilot book I mentioned is ‘Patagonia and Tierra del Fuego nautical guide’ by Mariolina Rolfo and Giorgio Ardrizzi, published by Editrici Incontri Nautici. Anche in italiano se preferisci!
The trek mentioned by Frank is the Dientes del Navarino. Patagonia is the size of France and Germany combined and has about 1 million inhabitants. Getting away from the crowds is no problem but you won’t find much (at all) as regards marked trails. And on the west side weather and vegetation are very very serious opponents.
As for expense, chartering a boat from Ushuaia is not cheap but what an experience! If you want to explore further, you can hire s car - better and cheaper in Chile - and it’s then really easy to get around, partly because, yes, it’s become much more touristy.
 

Frank Holden

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Great stuff Frank... many thanks. I’ll read and digest but by the sounds of it by the time I’m able to afford to venture there I think they’ll be Disney cruise ships sailing around...

Well Disney isn't there but everyone else is.... today's screenshot from MarineTraffic.com..... blue is passenger ships, purple is yachts......
Which is why winter is best .... better weather... fewer punters....

Coming north in September last year... not uncommon to go a day or two without seeing any other traffic... a ship or a fishing boat maybe... but usually you would hear a bit of distant traffic on Ch16...
Went three days without seeing anyone....without hearing anyone... bliss.

Saw only two other yachts south of Melinka....

Passos.jpgVeleros.jpgDSC_2119.JPG.jpg
 
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