navigating to the rafting capital of chile, via rio futaleufu
Futaleufu, Chile is known as the rafting capital of Chile, for good reason. The Rio Futaleufu has some crazy, insane rapids that we didn't dare attempt in our exposed Explorer 42. What made this part of the trip so enjoyable was paddling from Aldea Escolar, Argentina to the Chilean border ... just make sure you keep your GPS charged, because (we know from experience) it's easy to zip right past the border!
Travel Tip: When we crossed illegally into Chile we attempted to paddle upstream, almost capsizing our raft in rapids. Our tip? Just take out, hike back, and prepare an apology.
Tyler pulling out the packraft after a brutal afternoon of paddling the Rio Futaleufu. We're talking 45 mph headwinds, spray going everywhere. This picture taken 12 hours before we accidentally paddle across the Argentinian border and into Chile. Reese Wells.
Tyler pulling the packraft into the water. I love the clouds in this photo. Reese Wells.
After a brutal day on the Rio Futaleufu we were fortunate enough to receive some horse therapy! Tyler petting the muzzle of Julio, who was a plucky guy who enjoyed nibbling on our Hilleberg guy lines. Reese Wells.
Julio looking back on the Atko, wondering if he can sneak in a nibble on my tent when I'm not looking? What a beautiful horse. What a beautiful backdrop. What a beautiful life. Reese Wells.
This gnarled tree is the product of a lifetime of whipping, unforgiving winds that pull the sand out between the roots and push the branches into a perpetual leaning-back position. Brutal. Reese Wells.
One of the most amazing sunsets of Patagonia Soul, this coming on the Rio Futaleufu in Aldea Escolar, where we enjoyed one of our favorite campsites and hosts, Alfredo. Reese Wells.
I really like this picture because, although it is incredibly peaceful, there is a lot of action - the river is choppy with wind, the clouds are changing color, the leaves in the trees are bent backwards. Movement framed. Reese Wells.
Reflect - Refract
Sometimes I have to let my mind slip to pull you into focus, like the surface of a lake after a tremor of wind, the ripples smoothing out into a mirror.
It reflects - refracts - projects - contracts you, oscillating images that pull together into the woman I knew back home, before the wind shook the water out.
And now that the lake has calmed and the wind has dropped, what I see is the same woman with a new look, one that is centered, and strong, and clearer than before.