Northwest Patagonia . . .

We sailed from Puerto Montt at 5.00 pm for our next port of call, which was Puerto Chacabuco.

We passed a number of islands off the Patagonian coast, and experienced the majestic fjords that made one think of Norway.

The area known as Patagonia is split between Chile & Argentina, but I must admit I always thought of Patagonia as a part of Argentina rather than also being part of Chile.
Patagonia is the only place that the Welsh colonised, and in certain areas the locals still speak Welsh, and the children are taught Welsh.

The Welsh arrived in 1865 with the belief that their culture needed to be protected, because they considered it under threat in Wales.

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The Welsh / Argentinian flag.

It is estimated that 50,000 Argentinians can claim Welsh descent.

This post will be mainly photographs, because I enjoyed just floating passed some beautiful spots.

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Being an early riser has its compensations . . just to watch the sun rise.

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This is why I picked a cabin on the port side of the ship.

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All good things come to he who waits.

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A picture in blue

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We are inside a fjord – the water is flat calm as you see.

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‘Civilisation’, a small village on the point.

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Clear sky, but it suddenly poured with rain – check the the surface of the water.

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I was in the Living Room on the ship when I looked out and saw the sun reflecting on the water during a downpour, and had to click away.

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Starting to clear and the mountain in the background takes shape.

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Don’t forget we are in the middle of summer – February.

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Rain has stopped, but the wind has picked up a little. (white caps on the water)

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Nearing our destination – small sign of civilisation, with the pleasure boat.

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Our destination is around the next headland – on the port side.

‘Left hand down a bit, Mr Murray’ – you’d have to be of a certain age to remember this comment.

51xfiGPNQVL._SY445_A British radio show called ‘The Navy Lark’, first broadcast in 1959.

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At first I thought that this was the pilot boat, but it was a small tug that would carry our mooring lines ashore.

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I hoped that the pilot was not the same one who tried to berth this vessel . . . .

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I looked back as we entered the small port . . .

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The pilot boats – during our passage of the fjords we had a number of pilots living on board – I think there were six due to the complexity of navigating the various channels within the fjords.

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Alongside at last – the small boat that I’d seen, carried our mooring lines to the shore side gang.

I should have called this post Blue Skies . . .

 

Come fly with me!

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As we finished the tour of the oyster farm I asked Maureen if she would like a short flight in a helicopter. I’d flown in a helicopter across Sydney harbour some years ago in a traffic spotter helicopter for one of the Sydney radio stations. The weather had been horrible.
In Broome the weather was wonderful and Maureen had never flown in a helicopter.

The picture shows that the helicopter was little bigger than a toy! It held a maximum of four people, which included the pilot. He required our weight to work out his ‘load and balance’.

As we boarded (Maureen in the back), the pilot commented that he had to take the front door off because it had been cracked earlier in the day . . . .   the seat without a door was mine.

DSC06861rWe were soon airborne

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I took the above shot of the sand bank from the oyster tour boat about forty minutes earlier. The sand bar had nearly closed the creek / river entrance.

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We flew over the same spot and as you see the sandbar has nearly gone and the river opening is much wider. You can see the sandbar just under the water and the black dot in the middle of the water is the oyster boat that we were alongside.

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The moored oyster boat is just below us.

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This is the end of Cable Beach, which originates in Broome twenty two kilometres south of us along the coast. Some people have tried to drive along the sand from Broome to the oyster farm (which is feasible) but inexperienced drivers failed to take in to account the speed of the incoming tide and the rise and fall of 9.5 mtr or 31 feet. They became stranded and lost their vehicles.

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A general view of the surrounding area.

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The dirt road that we used to get to the oyster farm, and the change in colour from the red soil  to the dry sandy area, which is open the sea at certain times of the year – wet season and Equinox tides.

DSC06880rFlying over the dry sandy area and the shadow of our helicopter.

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Maureen in the back seat of the helicopter (what looks like a large knife at first glance is the seat strap). I just pointed the camera over my head a clicked blind – I was unable to turn around as the other hand was hanging on to my seatbelt, because of the lack of door. Every time we banked left I gripped the seat as I could feel gravity trying to drop me out of the machine. . . .

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Blue Sky and Deep Blue Sea

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The oyster farm that we visited.

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Heading back to the farm – the white shoe on the left and the knee is mine, just to show how limited the space was in the helicopter.

Regardless of space – we loved the whole trip!

Come fly with me