a small town experiencing rapid growth from tourism
Cochamo, Chile is experiencing incredible growth from globalization. The town of about 300 people is expected to house upwards of 3,000 tourists in the high season - the town infrastructure isn't able to handle such influx. Sewage overflows, groceries empty, and the town does everything it can to maintain stability.
Travel Tip: There is some incredible hiking up into the hills of Cochamo. Plan a few extra days here to hike to Refugio Cochamo.
Gooning back at the GoPro as we watch the tide change in Estero Reloncavi. Lots of sun exposure out here, we crisped up fast. Reese Wells.
Looking out over the bay of Cochamo, that volcano is over 30 miles of tide-affected fjord away. Crazy, right? Reese Wells.
A signal for incoming ships, this buoy is all that appears of this rocky island during significant tidal change. I like all the blue in this photo. It really does it for me. Reese Wells.
Tyler looking cute and bohemian as we prepare to do an interview about our transition away from the GPT and onto our own, great adventure. Reese Wells.
Pano porn of Estero Reloncavi, looking totally bonkers with the contrast from green to blue. And, oh! Check out Volcan Yate in the distance! Yeah baby! Oh yeah! Reese Wells.
Tyler looking like Kylo Ren hanging out in an intertidal zone with ultimate vibrancy. This taken during a day paddle around the Cochamo Bay. Reese Wells.
I love this photo because of the birds. Yeah, sure, Volcan Yate and the Cochamo Bay are beautiful. But, the birds! Reese Wells.
These little beauties are the product of a phenomenon known scientifically as the intertidal zone. When exposed (during low tide) you can hear them breathing. Holy sci-fi! Reese Wells.
What more could you ask for? We got Tyler in the left, an Explorer 42 to the right, and way, way back a big volcano that goes by Yate. Boomtown. Make the muscle with your hustle. Reese Wells.
God. One of my favorite pictures of Patagonia Soul. Tyler and Alpacka, doing it right in Cochamo Bay, Volcan Yate looming in the background. Reese Wells.
Two peaks, an Alpacka raft, and one totally awed Tyler doing it right out on a sandbar in Cochamo Bay. Reese Wells.
Trying to look nonchalant, but it's tough with so much beauty around in Cochamo Bay. Photo by Tyler Nachand. Reese Wells.
Got to see a helicopter land and then take off while crossing from Chile into international territory. It was a hot, clear day, and the soundscape was dominated by the thwumping blades. Reese Wells.
All of our gear got soaked, but the great thing about the Patagonian sun is how dumping direct it is - ten minutes in sunlight will dry just about anything out. Reese Wells.
Tyler paddling across Lago las Rocas as I take photos from a small bit of exposed rock. Water so clear you can see 100 feet down. Incredible. Reese Wells.
On a day like this, it's impossible to not lift a paddle and let out a cry of ecstasy. Tyler feeling his oats on Lago las Rocas in Chile, en route to our first border crossing - headed into Argentina. Reese Wells.
We hosted two underprepared honeymooners in the green Hilleberg Atko, leavingTyler & I to flip a coin for the lean-to. I took the bait and swallowed hook, guy line, and sinker for a dewy night out under the stars. Reese Wells.
Brown horses and big fiery sky - my idea of an ideal campsite. This was a super chill, calm night, and we soaked in the lush green as all faded to black. Reese Wells.
Waiting for Mosquito, who was supposed to pick us up and take us across the lake. But hey, despite how much Herbert stares with his binoculars, he isn't going to find Mosquito. We know! We looked! Tyler looks real pumped here. Reese Wells.
Tyler hiking towards Lago las Rocas, where we'll paddle the 8 km to the Chilean border guard in the morning. A typical bucolic central Patagonia field hiking scene. Reese Wells.
The Intertidal Zone
In the intertidal zone the clams can breathe, both submerged and exposed. So when the winds begin and the waves crash know that you are not alone.
For if a clam can inhale before the glacial melt, and if it can exhale into the sun, then you too can find the breath inside your chest and know life rolls on.