Cuevas del Milodon Expedition

Trip Start Dec 14, 2007
Trip End Nov 04, 2008

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Saturday, January 26, 2008

Puerto Natales has turned out to be an excellent spot (if weather is good :-) as it is full of little fish restaurants, coffee shops and bars with an atmosphere different to what we have seen up top now.

We decided to stretch our legs a bit with a 48km walk to the Cuevas del Milodon. The caves discovered in the 19th century by a German colonialist contained a large amount of bone remains (animal and human) and the bones and skin of an unknown creature until then...which they called "el Milodon". Basically it is a huge sloth.

The Cueva Grande is just huge, with the media and the chica being the same format (and the latter having lots stalagtites and stalagmites. We also walked around the "Silla del Diablo" which is a 36 metre huge formation which is supposed to be the chair of the devil...

And if you are asking how we got to the Cuevas del Milodon when there are no buses or public transport going there....simple - you walk and hitch hike. If you go early there are plenty of 4x4 going towards Torres del Paine and which are happy to drop you off.

We had dinner at an English owned restaurant "The Living" which has sofas and a vegetarian menu....and book exchange.

Talking about books, most towns have a hostel or bar with a book exchange (mostly English and American books), which means that you can constantly read books along the travels and pay nothing for it. A wonderful part of travelling. Since I started I have managed to go over 8 books, plus all the local newspapers - which makes waiting and travelling on buses so much shorter.

A note on "Travelling Butter": we had a good laugh during breakfast at "Hospedaje Teresa" (private room incl breakfast for $5,000 = approx Euro 7 per head). There is an Chilean history teacher travelling with his daughter around the area. He is quite a large man (in all directions) and has an unruly beard.

We were exchanging travel stories on Chile and Argentina when a piece of butter dropped from his bread onto his beard.... He kept talking to us and Veronika was looking at the floor cracking up. Suddenly he moved his hand and the butter seemed to jump onto his finger (still without him taking notice). It happily ended on his trousers, where it appeared this morning when we met him again... (For all of you German readers, you know I was living a Loriot experience, but did not manage that stone face of Evelyn Hahman..."Sie haben da...)

Anyway, we have done all the shopping of food for the next 7 days given we are going to be trekking and camping at the Torres del Paine national park. A tough trek but everyone seems to be enjoying it. Hopefully the weather will be as splendid as the last week.
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