After the superb weather we enjoyed in Torres del Paine it was inevitable that it would change, and so it has. We have spent the last couple of days in Puerto Varas on the shore of the xxxsq km Lago Llanquihue, and it has been grey and wet throughout.
There are a series of little towns round the shores of the lake which are very popular summer resorts for Chilean holidays. Unfortunately, like all seaside resorts the depend for their charm on good weather. Instead, during our visit they have all looked a little like Eastbourne on a wet Sunday afternoon in the dreary weather.
Our principal reason for being here was to get a view of one of Chile’s most magnificent volcanoes, Volcan Orsono. Unfortunately we have not even got a sight of it as it has been enveloped in cloud throughout.
We have though had the chance to drive round the area, more or less. We headed away from the lake this morning and found that it had been raining even harder last night than we had realised. The road to Petrohue was closed as it had been breached by water pouring off the hills.
Still, we saw enough of the country to realise that this is verdant agricultural land, mostly used for dairy farming, spotted with pretty farms and farmhouses, often in a very German/Swiss style, reflecting the large scale German immigration there was to this part of the Chile in the first half of the C20.
The countryside which is not farmed forms a series of large national parks with dense virgin forestry. Exactly the sort of forest you would expect to find in a part of the world where the ground is obviously rich, the weather mild and the rainfall frequent.