Driving alongside sinuous lakes on narrow roads cut into hillsides, trundling up winding and foggy mountain passes, we made our way ever south into Patagonia. As the day wound on, the skies darkened and the clouds lowered.
In Parque Quelat we found ourselves hiking in Middle-earth. We took the scenic trail, Sendero Bosque Encantado, up through a fairy forest dripping and green, across the mountainside to a frigid rocky stream and finally up to a hanging glacier and the ice blue pool of water beneath.
The hike was truly beautiful, if a little challenging with steep climbs cut into the hillside, wooden banisters carved from overhanging trees, and the constant dripping from the thick canopy above.
We were completely drenched by the time we made it back to the car and the rain was coming down in sheets. This decided us. Puerto Cisnes was only a thirty kilometer drive towards the coast. We looked forward to hot showers and warm bed covers.