In 1991 Puerto Aisén was the main port of the area along the Aysén Fjord, but from August to October in 1991 Mount Hudson erupted. The ash and erosion reduced the depth of the navigational part of the port, so the port had to be moved closer to the coast, where Puerto Chacabucco now stands.
The ship offered various tours – fly fishing in season USD$ 999 (5.5 hrs) or bike riding USD$159 (4 hrs), Patagonia Nature USD$179 (5 hrs) – all in all we decided that we would not take a tour because of the limited time that we had – only six hours in total, and we liked to be back on board an hour before we sailed.
This port was the quietest place I’d ever visited, other than a cemetery.
Fortunately our ship was small enough to berth alongside – we did not require to tender ashore.
We arrived at 1.00 pm, and as we didn’t plan on leaving the town area, we decided to walk around the town and go with the flow.
We stepped ashore and walked up the small incline out of the dock area, which took us about four or five minutes. It was a Monday and the dock area was very very quiet – nothing was happening, and I think the passengers were the only living thing around, other than one local guy on the pier watching us.
The market area and bus stop. We saw the bus (a mini-bus), but it didn’t stop at this stop, but stopped where ever a passenger waved his hand – I wasn’t sure if the person who boarded was a local or from the ship. As you see it was a beautiful warm day.
Many of house appeared abandoned, and hadn’t been lived in for some time.
I took this because of the street sign (the green one).
The local council must think that the population (those who still live here) are unable to work it out that if a tsunami happens they should run for high ground . . . or the sign could be to cover council legally, as in H & S or to be PC.
Our walk (more like a slow stroll) was about an hour an a half in total. This shows how close we are to the ship after we’d completed a large circle.
I don’t know for certain, but I think these homes were for the various pilots who service the fjords and surrounding waters, hence the large number of pilot boats on which I commented in my last post.
On the way back we did see a few locals who were kind enough to greet us, and wish us well, which was nice.
Back on board and leaning on the rail of our balcony I took this photographs, all peace and quiet.
Suddenly this craft appeared – made me think of James Bond, didn’t see anybody and it just disappeared up the fjord that we used to get to this location.
As we sailed I managed to catch the sun reflecting off the mountain.
The evening turning in to night.
One of the few local living things that I’d seen all day.
The sun sets leaving a black sea and the outline of the hills.
With hindsight perhaps we should have taken the bus to Puerto Aisén, which was a slightly larger town, but the lack of taxis in the port made one wonder if we would be able to get back in time – isn’t hindsight great?