Puerto Montt - The eighth step ... Patagonia etc once more. - CycleBlaze

December 18, 2019

Puerto Montt

We landed at Puerto Montt airport at about six o'clock this morning to find the it freezing cold with the rain chucking down.  The glories of a Patagonian summer's day.

The flights themselves weren't too bad despite first one starting twenty four hours before the last one ended (our route took us from Johannesburg to Sao Paulo, then on to Santiago before finally landing in Puerto Montt).  We managed to get a bit of sleep so we weren't complete zombies by the time our last flight landed.

The assembly of the bicycles went quickly and mostly smoothly.  I have got into the habit of boxing them myself which means that I can make sure they are well wrapped.  Even so, I still end up wrapping the boxes in plastic to reduce the risk of bits disappearing if the boxes get ripped. 

Our gear all packed waiting for the ride to OR Tambo Airport near Johannesburg.
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The assembly took place in the same corner of the Puerto Montt airport where we assembled them on the first of January of last year.  This time I didn't even have to worry about disposing of the boxes because the friendly and efficient cleaning staff came and carted everything away as I was finishing up.

Finishing up the assembly of the bicycles in the quiet corner at the Puerto Montt airport.
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With our hostel only expecting us after midday and the rain also forecast to ease as the day went on we decided to sit out the bad weather in the relative comfort of the airport terminal.   We eventually got going after eleven o'clock when it had seemed that the rain had stopped.  But the it soon returned and we took refuge in various shelters on the short ride to Puerto Montt.  It was the first time in more than three months that we have ridden loaded bicycles and we wobbled along quite slowly through the very busy traffic and less than pleasant road. 

Our room at the Copiapo Hostel is about the smallest I have ever seen.  It's the first time, apart from on a ship or train, where I have seen a bed fully enclosed on three sides.  It makes up for it by its location right at the start of the Careterra Austral and right across the road from the main shopping mall.

Our tiny room.
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After a shower we headed off to the mall to buy a gas cylinder, sim card and some groceries before collapsing back at the hostel.  We're both pretty knackered now.

Today's ride: 17 km (11 miles)
Total: 17 km (11 miles)

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