February 1, 2006

Pachamama from the air

Pachamama, - leaving Pumalin Park (picture by Kris Tompkins). On the crossing to Chiloe island we got some problems with the electronics. We were able to repair it in Castro. Tomorrow we are on the way again....

Posted by dario at 7:06 PM

February 12, 2006

Arrived in Puerto Cisnes

Yesterday we arrived in Puerto Cicnes with another nice tipical wooden church. Diego (on the left) is our local TOPtoTOP coordinator. We will have activities till Thusday here in Cisnses, before we start to sail North to meet other children in Quinched.

Here some pictures from the two last weeks:
- First, Jimmy, who went back two weeks ago and Martin who went back to Switzerland this week: on the helm, navigating, smiling

- wooden church and Salina playing with locals in Castro

- Pachamama in the Golf of Corcovado with the volcano Michinmaquida

- Annemarie sailing to Tictoc fjord escorted by dolphins, where we made also a presentation to locals and to the crew of the sailingboat Galatea from Valparaiso

- Salina and Sabine enjoyed the dolphins and sea lions in this wonderful bay we anchored

- after cleaning the teeth in the morning Annemarie takes always the first watch and navigates us along mountains with wonderful glaciers trough the Southern Patagonian fjords

Posted by dario at 2:34 AM

February 18, 2006

Activities in Puerto Cisnes

We announced our activities in the regional radio station Radio Nueva Genial. Young and old joined the presentation. During the TOPtoTOP presentation, Annemarie made a funny waste-game. Here the people learnt to seperate organic - from anorganic waste. Teacher Diego will coordinate the TOPtoTOP drawing contest and will send the solutions of his school children to us.

Diego is great! Between the activities we were able to eat at his place so that we did not have to row back to Pachmamama. He showed us also a beautiful lagoon and the Rodeo. The Rodeo is only twice a year and the most important event of Puerto Cisnes. The playstations are a little bit different from a city.

The Rodeo was the reason why we did not have a lot of volunteers for the clean up on the beach on Sunday. But the participants were very busy and we found even a battery!

Puerto Cisnes was a success! Thanks to the port captain Claudio Oviedo Cartes from the Armada de Chile for offering his buoy; also thanks to the mayor Auseno Saldes for the invitation to his village and again many thanks to our great local coordinator Diego.

On the 14th of February at 4 a.m. we set sail and left Cisnes. It was worth to go so far ... for this great people and the beauty of nature. In this landscape with mountains and forests devided by this amazing labyrint of endless channels and islands the weather and light are changing permanently and drop all in a very special atmosphere. Further North in the Golfo of Corcovado we saw blue wales and their food, too. The organisation Ballena Azul tries to create here a protected habitat for this biggest living species of the world.

Unfortunately the sailing in the Patagonian channels without using a motor seems to be possible only form South to North. Most of the time there are southerlies or no winds. That means, we we have to sail from the Atlantic side or from NZ to Antarctica and climb the TOP of Mount Vinson.

The biggest event for us was once more Salina. During the navigation in the Golfo de Corcovado she stood up alone and did not fall even when we were tacking ... and soon after she started to walk without stopping. Now we are in Tic Toc Bay heading for Chiloe.

Note: The Superwind generators and Sunware solar panels on Pachamama are working great.

Posted by dario at 1:33 AM

February 27, 2006

Blue wales and jellyfish

Download the interesting blue wales report in German from our member Annemarie Buechler, who joined TOPtoTOP in Patagonia: Blauwale in Patagonia (pdf, 230 kb)

... and here the report from our TOPtoTOP members Dawn and Mike Dorsett on White Princess about the jellyfish on the other side of the Pacific:

"Australia's Great Barrier Reef, one of the wonders of the natural world, and the largest organic structure ever built, is dying!
There were major coral bleaching events in coral reefs all round the world in 1998, and then again in 2002, which of themselves are too close together to allow corals to recover; but now, for two years running, Australia has had a one degree PER YEAR rise in sea surface temperatures. This is too severe for the corals to cope with and Australians are seriously worried at the extent of the bleaching.
In addition, a tropical jellyfish that normally lives in very warm waters has been steadily moving south into areas it has never been seen in before, as a result of the much warmer conditions."

Posted by dario at 4:03 PM