2017-06-20 day 65

Left about 9am and continued north and off map. We were heading for a yellow road. Fantastic colors and wash outs some we could still drive through some gulches too deep and/or steep and we had to go around.

After 2 days of off the map driving we got to the yellow road and back onto the map. We turn inland and went through another dead mine. We were hoping to get to the lake but the road had been blocked and although we could get around there didn’t seem to be an easy option to get down to the lake and into the mine.

Drove back out and off the other end of the yellow road and onto a sealed road near the mine. This mine is called Minera Escondida (which means 'hidden' in Spanish) is a mining company that operates two open pit copper mines in the Atacama Desert, 170 km south-east of Antofagasta in northern Chile. It is currently the highest producing copper mine in the world.

We were quickly pulled over by mine security and when we explained where we were going he led us to the office. There after much discussion and map drawing as they could not read ours we again followed him through the mines roads and then he let us continue. We gave him a kangaroo bottle opener and told him he was a friend of Australia. The road we traveled was exactly the one on our map so not sure of the confusion.

We stopped shortly after our escort had left and checked our emails. We have had no Internet for 2 days and hadn’t seen another car since the other mine two days ago. Just as we stopped, Jose rang to report that he had indeed found tyres for us and wanted to know what we wanted to do. We replied the we would read his email and talk later tonight.

Continued on through the traffic lights and out of the mine. We lost Internet at the top of the hill at 3272m alt, so came back down to 3259m and parked just of the road. We both have work to do with Internet.

John sent Jose to confirm that we would purchase 6 tyres. Two tyres to be shipped to Iquique north of here on the coast, and 4 tyres will be kept in Jose’s warehouse. The tyres are costing A$375 each, cheaper than in Australia. Jose is a legend!

55km’s north 130 k’s 3272m

2017-06-19 Day 64

Woke after a very poor sleep. I had a bad headache and felt nauseas and John had a mild headache. Yes, symptoms of Altitude sickness. I stayed in bed and after some ibuprofen I got a little sleep. There was no hurry to leave as we needed the ice/snow to soften.

As we left John decided to try to drive down a snow drift, didn’t quite make it, the diff was dragging. Out came the shovel….

As we popped back onto the road saw a 4x4 wagon do a U-turn and head back out. Not sure if he’d seen us.

Drove back down to about 2800m alt and turned north on a road which was not on our map. There are hundreds of tracks out here. After the first section it was a great road. We only travelled for about 20km’s today on roads marked on our map and that was by a very big mine. We just find one that looks OK going in the general direction we want to travel in.

The colors are just spectacular and as usual the camera does not do it justice.

Stopped in the middle of the road for lunch at the 100km mark. The afternoon didn’t see much progress. More wash outs to drive around and one big one that we had to travel up-river about 1.5km to find a spot that we could both enter and exit the river bed.

About 4:30pm we just pulled of the road for a camp. Did some maintenance on the vehicle.

2200m altitude.

2017-06-18 Day 63

Wow! what a great day we had. 

Still driving north on white roads. I planned a route towards the border and past a national park and a huge salt lake area.

First we drove on tracks that were more like rivers. Some that had been flooded were the smoothest roads we had. Others were very slow going.

We detoured 30k to a main road to get fuel as we are unsure of where we are heading. When we started our next track after fuel it weaved between two disused mines and derelict 

 At the second one I had to walk ahead and clear the track of nails and wire. The track then became very rough, the rivers had flowed down it. As we gradually climbed less and less rivers joined the road, till we were back to road rather than river bed. We kept climbing gradually.

The colors of the hills and desert are just indescribable - see the photos. Some of the desert has no vegetation at all. 

Saw a few Vacuna a type of Llama’s . Then we saw a burnt out car then another.

At about 2750m altitude we met snow. Saw another 5 dumped cars. We wondered why they were here. 

Luckily for us a loader had been through and done a bit of clearing. Sometimes in the road other times beside the road. We topped out at 3620m alt, when the front end loader had turned around. :-( We had a good route planned out but it did take us just over 4000m alt.

Any way, drove back a short distance and out onto a ridge top. 3650m alt. What a fantastic 360° view. Took some more photos and watched the sun set. 6°C

Had a headache at dinner time and John felt a little dizzy. Ran the heater on very low over night. It worked very well.

2017-06-17 Day 62

I drove out of camp towards the ocean but the ocean road was closed so drove on ruta 5 until we found a track across the dunes to the ocean. Stopped just short of Bahai Inglesie and John checked to see where the Lodge Piedras Bayas was as there is a guy that may be able to help with sourcing tyres. Although the lodge address is Bahai Inglesie it is actually 70k’s south, we passed it yesterday. John rang the lodge and got another number for an English speaker. John rang Jose and got email contact so wrote a note about our tyre requirement. We decided, as we were asking for help, we’d head back to his lodge. Going south on this closed road we passed some very long beautiful beaches pity its not summer.

Just as we got to the blockage on road, Jose called back and we discovered he was in Santiago. So back north again. Stopped at Bahai Inglesa and filled up with fuel food and water

Time for mountains. East and then North. Not many vehicles around here. Mountains are wonderful colors that change all the time. Some pretty neat ones had stripes through them. Because we are in the desert with no or very little vegetation the colors of the sand and rock shine forth.

Past a disused railway tunnel which John was very keen to drive through but it was very short so he lost interest.
These tracks are really just a bulldozed track through the sand. Lots of washouts from recent rain which I believe is rare. Some of the passes up here have been closed with snow which only happens every couple of years.

Pulled off the road onto a small hill top for a camp. Washed and hung up the washing. Some truckies tooting us. One started a long way off and kept tooting...Nearly dry when we went to bed.

Woke to the sound of dripping and told John it was raining. He went to get the washing off the line but it was just thick fog. Didn’t expect that here in the desert

2017-6-16 Day 61 Fri

Up and underway by 9:00

Continued our drive around the point. No track on our map but one showed on GoogleMaps. Just a small track passing all the shanties and at times quite tight between rocks for EC. 

We tried to stay as much as possible on the dirt roads but some shown as white were sealed and the main yellow one was dirt but very smooth.

Came around a corner to see a type of industry but no power lines to it. Could not figure out what it was.

Found a pool of water so filled our “washing machine" and put clothes in to wash.

Just before Puerto Viejo we took a short detour inland so we could follow the river back to the ocean hoping for water to do the washing tomorrow. Instead as we came over a rise the river bed below was filled with an olive grove, a huge number of trees. The grove must extend for 2.5km and is about 500m wide.

Following above the river bed back to the ocean we decided to drive to the edge of the river and look down upon the olives. A great place for lunch and the night.

Washing will wait.....

2017-06-15 Day 60 Thur

The day of turn backs.

John drove to the end of the map and as advertised the end of the road. Lots of vehicle tracks and looked like most go along the beach. We were not too keen on that idea so followed the original track and yes it disappears into the sand dunes.

Followed another track but it ended at a very step sandy decline into a river bed. We knew we would not climb out again, and with what we’d seen with the recent washouts, it could take us the rest of the day finding a way across the 1km of rocky river bed. So backtrack the 5km to the beach.

We drove along the 4km of beach with no problems what so ever, but we did exit at the first opportunity.

We wanted to take the white road north instead of the Ruta 5 but got turned back at EL Morado. The road was still being repaired after the rains. A guy in a red covered ute was there with the front end loader driver, we tried to ask about alternatives but seems there are none but the Ruta 5 unless we want extreme 4x4.

Lots of mining up this river bed, so we stopped and walked into one of the tunnels. We walked for about 100 meters. They had dug from the top here too. Also boards on the floor so we backed out.

New high tension power lines were being erected and wires tensioned. We had lunch under one of them which still had the wires running through the wheels.
Our friend in the covered red ute, who had turned us back at El Morado, beeped loudly on his way past.

Just before we got to Ruta 5 the power-lines were just being put up.

We drove for a short while on Ruta 5 then headed back to the coast and to Huasco.
It is amazing here you just don't know what you’ll see around the next corner. Driving into Huasco we saw some sort of industry with 2 smoke stacks and two tankers anchored offshore
We drove a little further north and out to the coast on a dotted track. Lots of little humpies but found a secluded spot out of sight and between two of them

 231km today but not all northerly!!

2017-06-14 Dday 59 Wed.

Followed the track along the coast. Initially it was a white road and just north of Puerto Cruz Grande became a dotted line. The road line on the map has a 2km gap in it before another dotted line begins. We assumed it would meet up as the map contours are flat.

I drove the first 30km then John drove, it took him 2 hours to make 10km. Very slow going but really interesting drive. Not many vehicles come this way. We found a lovely camp spot above the turbulent ocean. A very noisy campsite. John refers to it as our washing machine camp.

Probably our remotest campsite to date.

Only 49km today

Lots of vehicle tracks on the other side of the point so we knew we had a way out.

2017-06-13 Day 58 Tues

Up early for a hot shower, breakfast and to pack all the stuff back into EC then to Bridgestone at 9:00, where they didn’t touch EC till 10:00. Finally at 13:30 we left with a repaired spare, a tube and “balanced” front wheels.

Dropped into the home-ware store and bought some thinners, hose fitting, double sided tape and silicon. Food shopping then water and diesel then out of town at about 1700 hr.

An easy drive north on Ruta 5. Turned off just past Los Hornos and got a camp on dusk with Internet looking back over the town.

48km's today

We made a short climb to the top of the point and watched the sun set. Stunning

2017-06-12 day 57 Mon

We did some computer work in the morning and left for La Serena about 11. We stopped at Bridgestone to see if we could get the back wheel (the spare we have put on) balanced. We spent 3 hours there talking and planning etc. the short of it is they can take the damaged tyre and do an emergency repair and put a tube in it. We need to come back tomorrow at 9 to have the front wheels balanced as the back vibrations get absorbed …… apparently

Booked into the hotel and parked around the back which made us feel less conspicuous. Had a quick lukewarm shower then went out for a basic lunch. The Hotels seafood restaurant is not open on Mondays. John had a short nap then set up the room for the teleconference. His meeting started at 6.30pm so I uploaded some photos and watched a movie then off to sleep. John joined me about 01.30am

2017-06-11 Day 56 Sunday

Our friendly truckie beeped us on his way passed this morning at 7.30

We decided on a loop south back toward La Sarena and hopefully an early camp. 

The road took us up to nearly 1000 m and into the fog. We did get up above it but back into it on the downward leg.

Found a sign which indicated that a further road that we would not travel on would be closed, which was fine. Another 20 km and we got to a road closed sign. John got out to chat to a farmer to ask if road was open. John got the impression we could get through to where we needed to get.

Well the road looked like it was being worked on and had been widened in areas. We found the digger which was having a weekends rest. We found the road closed sign from the other end which indicated "to our Spanish", that the road was closed 24km behind us!! Found an early camp just south of La Sarena with Internet.

I booked us into a hotel for tomorrow night while John read board papers. John will need good Internet for the board conference call tomorrow night.

Finally feeling trust towards the workings of the stove so we siliconed it down holding it in place with the leveling blocks and a rock of which there are hundreds to choose from.

2017-06-10 Day 55 Sat

I spent an hour and a half in Vicuna’s hospital as they don't have doctor surgeries. Interesting procedure. Yes I have an urinary infection. So off to the pharmacy for antibiotics.

Heeded north to the Agua Negra pass. 45 km away. Very interesting place very little vegetation, but lots of grape vines. Some are covered in a very fine white shade cloth others have cloth vertical as a wind break. Some look very unloved others were fresh plantings.

Amongst the vineyards were plantings of citrus, probably oranges.

A herd of horses were being mustered down the main road. Not sure if they were freshly from the wild or farmed.  A few km's further on, a large herd of goats were being driven down the road. One young lady was on a very small frisky mount! Their mounts appear to have quite a large part of donkey in them.

We arrived at the border guard 125km before the border and dirt road to find that the road is closed for maintenance until December. What a disappointment. So back past Vicuna and turned right onto a loop road which would take us most of the way back to La Serena.

As we passed through the little village off the main road we noticed lots of sand and road works. It looked like a lot of water had come down recently. As we drove further it became very evident that lots of water had wrecked havoc on the road. Parts of which had been completely washed away. As there is mining here the mining equipment looked like it had been assigned to getting the road passable. And it was for the trucks. 

We got to a stop sign and found out that the road was closed further ahead and trucks were coming out full of rubble. The guy indicated that this destruction had occurred in one day 3 weeks prior. Amazing stuff.

On the way out we meet a truck and I misjudged the fence. A small piece of back rear window frame is now in the locker awaiting silicon to put back together.

We finally found a camp on the south side of Vacuna – La Sarena road up a narrow well used road.

Found out why it was well used. Just after we had made camp just before dusk about 6 trucks came through. One truck and one ute beeped at us. Some of the truckies are really friendly.

207-06-19 Day 54

An early start to the day. We arrived in La Sarena 2 minutes before 08.30. Didn’t get a lot of success through Kaufmann. A young mechanic was the interpreter today. The Michelin XZL tyres are not available in Chile and there do not seem to be alternatives from other Manufacturers. The broken mirror housing could not be replaced as the new model Fuso differs. Snow chains seem to be not available or needed. The local tyre guy could not balance the tyre but suggested another tyre shop in the vicinity may be able to. Kaufmann did grease the underside for us again which was great and the young mechanic went with John to ask the other tyre places for similar tyres. Kaufmann did not charge us for their efforts today. Very friendly but could not help us on this occasion.

Left about 2pm and headed inland. We will try and do the Agua Negra pass tomorrow if we can. It is a dirt road but we have been told it is well worth the drive and we hope there is not much snow. We don't intend going to Argentina. Just going for a drive.

2017-06-08 Day 53

We left our perch and headed closer into La Sarena found a nice spot near the ocean, just north of Tongoy and just 50 k south from La Sarena. 

We actually have a camp before lunch! Had chicken and salad for lunch and half a beer sitting in the sun. John read his board papers and I read a book.

More maintenance on the steps and discovered that the cog does not come out the bolt is welded in. All we can really do is more WD40 and get it moving with its engine, which we did on and off during the afternoon. It is getting looser.

Had a walk around, neat area with lots of small boulders. There had been a lot of digging in the region and we think they were digging for white rock. Lime? But not sure as they also dug below this layer. 

The snow capped Andes were just poking above the other mountains and looked great at sunset. Then the full moon rose above them. Very pretty.

2017-06-07 Day 52

The heater stopped this morning so we took the pump off and blew it out with compressed air hoping to dislodge dirt. Put it back together but the heater still didn’t work. Sprayed more WD40 on the steps again and took lots more photos of cacti and the view.

A section of the road out.

Didn’t get under way till about 12.30, continued north on the newly dressed road. A windy road down but not as steep as coming up. The colors and the vegetation changes often. Lots of cactus and prickly bushes but most of it dead. Purples, greens & yellow all colors of the ground, quite an amazing drive.

Out onto seal for a short period and then back onto dirt. Still following the guy fixing the track. Just as well as there are still edges missing where the recent rain has washed chunks of the edge away.

A fantastic drive with all the colors and the road. Very slow going though probably averaging 25-30 k/h. On the last section there were a few homes with goats. Very basic living.

Back to the black top and found a corner of road just above a dam near Casas Punta de Guana.

We are booked into Kaufmanns on Friday 8.30 in La Sarena to get chains, two tyres, and a backing for the left hand mirror which is cracked. They have not sourced the tyres yet so not sure what we will end up with.

2017-06-06 day 51

Headed inland on a white(dirt) road to Tilama. Where there is a quartz quarry, but like most other tourist industries they were closed. Headed north on the gravel road. Were behind a truck which was great as when he went into the tunnel we could confidently follow and feel safe as it was only one lane. The second tunnel he went in honking his horn, we soon found out why. It was a curved tunnel. The third we had to wait for another truck coming our way. The last tunnel was very narrow and the tire tracks were well worn in the dirt. I think a car would be scraping its under belly.

Found a river with water in it at Limahuida, so stopped and investigated further with the steps and did the washing. The main cog that moves the steps seems to be almost siezed. Unable to get it off so some WD40 and time.

Drove on and up. At Illapel we finally found a supermarket to buy a few things in. The "witch" had most of the streets incorrectly labeled so we nearly drove up some the wrong way. A little further north we peeled of the orange road back onto white. Quite a narrow road but had just been dressed so no potholes. 

We turned off this white road onto a lesser white road and went up. Lots of switch backs and very narrow. I was hoping we wouldn't meet traffic as very few places to pass. Lots of small mines in the area.

At the top we followed a small track trying to reach the crest looking south. The road fizzed then we noticed a guy coming towards us. A really friendly chap missing his two front teeth but a very welcoming smile. I informed him we were trying to get up for a view. He then explained to John where we should go.

We ended up at the top of a very rain damaged track at about 1920m. A great 360 view.

2017-06-05 Day 50

At La Ligua I bought mum some carnations. It has been a year since her passing.

Drove around the town of Las Parcelas trying to get to the beach. Not possible but we did see lots of hot houses growing flowers. Photographed a very happy farmer ploughing his patch with a horse. The hoae

Up along the coast to Pichicuy to see if we could purchase fresh fish for lunch. No only frozen.

We are back on Ruta 5 and not enjoying it. Arrived at Los Molles where Marie from Los Andes has a friend who takes tourist diving with seals but the sea has been too rough.

Nice to see a bit of swell coming in, the biggest we have seen in Chile and it’s not that big. Did not find this town friendly in fact got ushered back to the main beach which is fenced off. The town borders a national park which was all locked with a high fence.

Moved on again this time to Pichidangui which looked like it had a track along the sea cliffs. But no it was fenced off. We had seen another track we thought would take us to the same spot but half way there a ute stopped to talk to us. Not much English but she conveyed that her husband spoke English and we should follow her home which we did.

Carlos was a Canadian and had lived here for 5 years. We got some valuable local knowledge from them, then headed out to the sea cliffs to camp. Great spot except for the rubbish!! Ocean lively and a great sunset. One of our best camp so far

Rang Muff for her birthday.

2017-06-04 Day 49

We drove up to the town of Portilla. Basically we wanted to get some altitude to check that the heater would work as it is only guaranteed to work up to 2200m . The road is famous for it’s switchbacks about 23 but 17 in a row. Portilla is a ski resort with a 65 year old chalet. All old world inside and quite beautiful. Must hum in the ski season. There was snow about but not enough for skiing.

Drove on a couple of k's towards the immigration station and managed to get to 2990m. The highest EC has been. Both heater and stove worked well.

Drove back down taking some photos. We are still heading north but slowly. Headed towards the coast. Drove back past Los Andes and through some big avocado orchards. Some of the towns have some very narrow streets. Avocados must bring in some money the towns are all very neat and in good repair.

Drove up a neat looking ridge and stopped there for the night. A great spot with views East and West but covered in rubbish. Such a shame.

We didn't see so much rubbish further south. Lots of big skips placed strategically helped.

2017-06-03 Day 48

We went in search of Michelin again and came to the conclusion that the shop had left town and had been repainted!! Patricio’s dad had a new set of chains but they were a little to small. Picked up a Hand made Wok with screw on legs and lots of bowls from their restaurant to help with lunch

The guard at the supermarket was very friendly and had a chat to us. In the next supermarket where we went for Basil the guard (we think) encouraged one of us to stay with vehicle. John came back with the goods and rubber bands which we had been looking for for weeks.

Arrived back at Borros and started to prepare lunch. I gave the Wok a good scrub with steel wool to remove rust. John cooked two amazing curry’s with lots of ingredients substituted and with untried curry paste. A red canned salmon curry the other a yellow pumpkin curry. With two stir fry veges. Some of the guest were vegetarians.

The lunch started with Pisco sour. We had a great lunch. John packed up as I chatted and then off we went. We drove towards the Argentina border and camped by a river. A late camp

017-06-02 Day 47

John woke with some more ideas of tests to could do on the stove. Neither of us are inclined on spending AU$1000 or 2 weeks to get a new part from Spain.
 June and John called as we haven't been posting on the blog or map page….

We took the control panel off and cleaned it of Australian red dust! And found what we thought was a dry solder joint so we re-soldered it. Also discovered that the pump was leaking air, may have become loose from all the lifting up of stove yesterday. Anyway after those repairs the stove worked!!

We drove into town to order a tyre but could not find Michelin today. Bought food (and finally found some rubber bands)as John is cooking lunch tomorrow for Monica and her mother, Patrico, Santiago and Ignacia, and their parents and Maria and her mum. No not in EC but in the Kitchen here at Cabanas Barros which has a basic industrial kitchen.

Heated soup for dinner in 10 minutes….

2017-06-01 Day 46

Left at 06:30 for North Santiago. Bertonati Vehiculos Especiales was not hard to find but I think we were on an electronic toll road for part of the way. Oops.
Park at the company which is quite big. At 8 a couple of guys turned up and we were into it. As always happened the heater worked!! but did fail after 10 minutes. Checked the diagnostics. And there had been problems with the pump and burner. Anyway it started again and went for 3 hours!!

The stove however was another issue. These guys had no experience with the Webasto stove and could not connect to it for analysis. A lot of WhatsApp messages were sent between myself and head of South America Webasto in Spain.

Mr Bettonati gave us the grand tour. Amazing place. They build ambulances and can make 300 per year. 1.4 for every working day. They also build dental trailers and Mammogram trucks.

Miguel is an avid fly fisherman and we were introduced to his trusty Hilux that gets him to the remote streams to fish. They gave us great service and lunch in the casino (canteen). We left with the thought that the controller was dead at about 16:30, to drive back up to Los Andes and buy our chains.

Chains were not available so did some food shopping. When we arrived back at the Cabinas Barros we took wine cheese and bread into the office to share with Patrico, Santiago and Ignacia

A nice evening.

2017-05-31 Day 45

We had breakfast with Maria , Patrico, and his siblings . Monicas' friend came to look at the stove. He is a car electrician but we think the stove has a fuel related problem.

We checked that the fuel pump to the heater was working and we know the fuel pump for the stove is working as it filled the filter when we replaced it.

Received an email back from a company who has experience with a dual top so decided not to pull it apart. Hopefully we can get a diagnosis first. Booked in for early tomorrow - a trip back to North Santiago about 70km.

Went with Maria and Patrico up to a hardware shop. Finally bought a fire extinguisher. (A$20)
Had lunch at Patrico's parent’s restaurant.

John took Patrico back uptown to buy some snow chains for the wheels. AU$180. They were too short so the guy was going to source some larger ones.

2017-05-30 Day 44

Runners still arriving at 11.30pm they must have good head lights as the road is pretty rough. A bigger truck than us with a blue flashy lights came up, turned around and parked by us in the night with engine and flashing blue light still going. We assume they had come up to work on the aerials. Runners and cyclists started arriving from about 7.30. One lady had a chat with John.

We left and caught up with the lady at the bottom of the hill. John jumped out to do the hubs and the lady invited us to lunch so we said ok. We followed her and her dog back to her house. Her mum had cooked lentil soup and Monica had a neighbor go grab a bottle of vino tinto.

 Anyway we put a load of washing on and had a hot shower which was great as the heater is not working at all now. and I didn’t cherish a cold shower. Monica rang the couple of Webasto agents I had emailed yesterday. One doesn’t do repairs and the other’s number didn’t exist anymore. She rang some friends trying to find someone to help and informed us one would visit tonight.

Some of Monica’s friends arrived for dinner while I was on the phone to Retrolooms in Aus (they had fixed our stove in Nov). These friends, Patricio and girlfriend and her mother
(Maria ) spoke English. After dinner Patricio invited us back to stay on their property which has cabins. We followed him back.

2017- 05-29 Day 43

Off early to our appointment with the main post office in Santiago. John drove most of the way and then I took over for the city. The main post office is right beside Plaza de Armas in the heart of Santiago. John jumped out and walked to the PO and I continued to do 3 laps of about 10 blocks. First lap was ok then lunch break and the hordes came out, and the traffic police took over from the lights. Anyway finally found a park one block from PO and awaited John and settled my nerves.

No Glasses; they are in Puerto Montt!! An off-duty police man with English helped John to try and ask for them to be posted back to Arequipa early but only Maria (the poster) can do that. So one month in Puerto Montt and another month back to Arequipa. I wonder if we will ever see them.

While waiting I chose 3 possible camps north in Los Andes. We ended up on top of a hill in the middle of town. It was a very rough dirt road with lots of mountain bikes and runners using it. People are very friendly here.

2017-05-28 Day 42

The plan as usual did not go well. We were going to stop at a lake early – in time to do the washing and have it mostly dry by sunset.

Tried to find a camp at Lago Vichiquen but it was very built out. I guess we are too close to Santiago. At the end of one lane we met a lady who initially was not very happy with us being on a private road to 7 houses. I brought her around and she even offered us to stay. But we continued on. No luck at this lake, onto the next.

Camped south of Pichilemu. At a well known surf beach. We drove up onto the headland with the other 50 vehicles. All the locals here to watch the sunset. We hung around till sunset and when most people had left and freed up the spot we had chosen we moved in and set up camp.

2017-05-27 Day 41

We traveled north on small roads through more pine forests and up on ridges. The air is starting to get very smokey, I assume it is all the wood fires in houses.

Two log trucks had trouble passing so we waited while they maneuvered.

Stopped for lunch down by a river and filled the washing machine with fresh water and our dirty clothes.

Continued following the coast north until we found a camp out on a long delta. Beautiful black sand. A very strange beach, it had a meter high vertical bank, about high tide mark with lots of beach above it. The tide still seemed to wash over the lip.

Lots of bird life eating Krill(?) in the water and the beach was littered with krill(?) carcasses.

We wondered north along the beach and found a family, the father was in the water dragging ugly stuff off the rocks and throwing to the kids. It is a delicacy called Puire. See photo or google as too hard to explain.

Watched the sun sink from our beach chairs with a glass of wine.

2017-05-26 Day 40

John had to crow bar the leveling blocks out of the frozen earth this morning. The slippery parts of the road in the park were nicely frozen on the way out.
 Today we go to Los Angeles to buy a new Shock as the right one is making strange noises.
We stopped at Angol and I renewed supplies at the supermercado while John pumped up the tyres to 50psi. Next to get some cash. The bank kindly gave me $150k Pesos about AU$300. Next stop Diesel and water.
Heading into Los Angeles we stopped to look at the magnificent huge wind turbines. They are wonderful machines. As we started to rejoin the flow of trucks John noticed a problem and pulled off .
A very flat tyre almost off the rim. The change went well although we were a bit close to the traffic. A large gash inside back right tyre. We assume it had been there for a few days and the combination of replenishing the vehicle, extra tyre pressure, and speed was enough to break the seal. Our first flat and we will need to organise a new tyre.

We managed to buy the pair of shocks and get them fitted(66k peso + 10k for fitting AU$150). We drove out of town looking for a camp site which we finally found at the top of a hill perched high above a river in a pine forest.

A beautiful sunset and a day old moon