A massive landslide killed 16 people, burried half a town and closed the only road heading South. So we took to the water.
Let's go back to the week before the slide, we were warm and cozy in a hostel in Bariloche eating chocolate and drinking litres of coffee as freezing rain was chucking down outside. There was a three day sunny weather window coming up and we thought it would be best to make some miles. And so we got on a boat and made no miles, 2 days, 3 ferries and the most spectacular mix of mountains and water got us back to Chile and no further South, but chocolate and most everything else is cheaper in Chile so we were happy.
And that's when we found out about the landslide, and the depressing idea of taking a bus back to Argentina where we had just come from. So we found the internet and realized we could head East and ferry over to Chiloe island, and ferry back to the mainland South of the slide. Perfecto. We`re basically sailors now.
Chiloe offered ample portions of super steep short hills and terrible gravel roads as Andrea led me on the scenic coastal route... Easier than pushing through the landslide.
Christmas came on Chiloe and we spent it inside a nice little hostel that only had us as guests! Mulled wine, crêpes, singing German Christmas carols. The weather was terrible which makes staying inside all the sweeter, granted it had been wet and cold for two weeks and the forecast wasn't looking great so we knew to appreciate the dry warmth.
Taking the ferry back to the mainland was stimulating, the boat was rolling so much that the windows swung from the dark blue sea to the grey sky in 5 second intervals. Gravol is great. 10 hours later we landed in Raul Marin Balmaceda in a thick bank of fog. We were soaking wet by the time we left the ramp. Buckets were coming down and not planning to change course. We scrambled to find cover so we could look at the map and see where we missed the only campground in town, which was 50 meters behind us... We still couldn't find the entrance so we pushed through the woods and popped out in a little field that would be our home for a couple of nights. As we were walking around trying not to drown, a Colombian couple opened the bathroom and asked if we actually planned to camp, and that's when we saw that they had set up camp in the bathroom, smart. Lucky us, the other bathroom was vacant, win. It had rained so much that the ferry we needed to take 10kms south of town was out of operation due to high water... Rest day. It was a real treat to be stuck in RMB for a day as it offered up our first dolphin and penguin sightings of the trip. The town bordered a series of stunning fjords and all kinds of marine life. RMB was the best part of the detour which we would have totally missed otherwise.