04/12/2013 Stage 71 Puerto Natales-Hotel Rio RubensUntitled by malcandmarjetpatterson at Garmin Connect - Details
After Puerto Natales there would be no significant settlement until Villa Telehueches 148 kms further on. We had 12 days left and 7 days cycling still to do and so it made sense to aim for Hotel Rio Rubens which is completely isolated and is only 65kms from Puerto Natales.We knew it would cost a bit more in a proper hotel but it would spread the remaining cycling out more evenly.
It was sad to leave Puerto Natales where Loreto the landlady had been so welcoming and it was even more tempting to stay when we realised that the strong winds hadn't abated much. Still, with the direction we were heading it shouldn't ever be full on against us. It seems strange to think back to cycling in the North of the continent where the biggest worry was always the amount of climbing or the heat but in Patagonia only one thing counts and that's the wind.
After a week of not cycling my legs were slightly stiff but eventually loosened up. The wind was mainly crosswind for most of the day which although it neither pushes you back or forwards is still at times hard to cope with as you will be blown of track and have to lean sidewards into the wind.
Non the less after only 4 hours we arrived at the hotel and paid twice the previous rate for a room with shared bathroom, no bulb and no light and no electric plug. We cheered ourselves up with a steak sandwich and a bottle of wine.
The weather forecast for tomorrow suggests that the wind will swing to WNW and our route turns south. If so we should have the wind on our side but if it remains SW we will be struggling with a headwind again. Fingers crossed.
Marjet managed to experiment often enough to discover that the dead camera would in fact work if you took the battery out and replaced it for every shot which is a bit tedious but will have to tide us over until we can replace it.