From the refugio it is about eleven kilometers to the popular La Junta. The hike is a repetition of yesterday’s hike: a muddy path, trenches, rainforest and a few river crossings.
La Junta, or her visitors, can be heard from miles away; hundreds of tents are pitched at the various campsites.
Although there are many sights to visit from La Junta, I’m not staying, it’s too crowded and the people are too noisy. It’s another eleven kilometers to the end of trail and the bus to Cochamó. On my way down I meet hundreds of hikers and a lot of packmules and -horses making their way to La Junta.
Because of all this traffic the trail has turned into one big puddle of mud. The easiest thing to do, is to just walk through the mud and clean myself, my shoes and my socks later in a river. As soon as I reach the ripio I’m adressed by a man with a van. He takes hikers for a small fee to the bus stop in Cochamó.
Upon asking the other hikers I’m sharing the van with, what town is most interesting: Puerto Montt or Puerto Varas (both reached by the same bus), the unanimous answer is ‘Puerto Varas!’. ‘Puerto Varas is a friendlier town with views on Vulcán Osorno. Puerto Montt is gray and boring’, one of the guys explains.
Claro, Puerto Varas it’ll be.
Unfortunately Puerto Varas has to wait another day: the 5pm bus never showed and the driver never answered his mobile phone. Luckily there’s a campsite next to the bus stop. Tomorrow morning at 8am attempt #2.
Traversia Paso el León – Cochamó
Traversia Paso el León
- Here more about this Traversia Paso el León
- More on the GPT (and the most up-to-date info) at Wikiexplora
- Read here more about Cochamó and La Junta
- Listen here to the ‘Picaflor’ Podcast (Dirtbag Diaries) – set in Cochamó valley
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Written on trail.