Camping in Puerto Cisnes

Luckily for us, our visit to Puerto Cisnes was during the off-season, meaning most vacationers had long since departed and locals were huddling in and getting ready for winter. Omar with the municipality, upon hearing about our project, gave us free reign to camp on a little spit of public park that was just outside of the town. To get there, you drove down along the costanera (shoreline road) and followed a pitted and bumpy gravel path beside a crumbling cliff face that curved around the bay so that in the end, we found ourselves facing the port town from across the bay.

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Across the bay, Puerto Cisnes
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Backing the camper trailer into the best spot. The spit of land on which the park jutted out into the bay was beautiful but wind-blown and chilly. We tried to position our tent in a protected spot between the trees. Luck was on our side, the skies cleared for exactly the 45 minutes it took us to set up camp.

On our first afternoon at the camp site, after securing our camper trailer, we discovered a boat graveyard around the bend on the bay.

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The next day, we took the time to explore the site a little further. It revealed a treasure-trove of colors and lines for my camera. Each boat had a name, lovingly painted onto its side. Although time had worn down the boards and other fishermen had scavenged useful bits, the boats were still somehow majestic and beautiful.

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A lot of our readings and friends have asked to see what our set-up looked like during our Patagonia trip. Well, here she is.

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We purchased a tent trailer for our travels in Patagonia. I won’t name the business where we purchased this because it turned out to be a total lemon! The idea was great but, as we drove further south, more and more problems started to reveal themselves. As we discover during our week’s stay in Puerto Cisnes, the tent was not watertight. This created an ongoing problem with damp and mold that we struggled to deal with in the wet and rainy south.

The tent itself was spacious and not too difficult to set-up. Once we understood the mechanics and had practiced a few times, it only took 30 minutes to set up. Upon entered the tent, on the left was the sleeping bunk. In the ceiling crease above the bunk, Mark installed a strip of LED lights which were such a fantastic addition. You’ll also see our little travel toilet to the right of the ladder (such a convenience!). To the right of the entry, we set up our little living space with camp chairs, table, and stove.

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The front of the trailer housed the utility box. Inside we kept tools, the camp toilet, the solar battery, and attached on the outside you can see one of the two red gas cans. In Patagonia, there are numerous stretches of wide open road with no gas stations for hundreds and hundreds of kilometers. It is recommended to bring plenty of extra fuel.
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Here was another problem that surfaced at Puerto Cisnes. The damn water tank wouldn’t hold water!
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Here is Olivia making rock work of the water which spilled out of the poorly sealed seams of the water tank. You can see that we were fully prepared to use the trailer as our all-in-one overlanding rig; in the compartment on the left you see our water heater, on the right is the pump.
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