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Stock Photo: Caleta Tortel, A Tiny Coastal Hamlet Located In The Midst Of Aysen Southern Chile’s Fjords

ID 111990367 © Juanvilata | Megapixl.com

Caleta Tortel is a tiny coastal settlement located in a maze of fjords and glaciers, at the mouth of the Baker river in the Aysén region, Southern Chile. Up to very recently, it was very , since there was no road linking it to the main population centers in Patagonia. Caleta Tortel`s original colonists went there to log the local woods, made up of the so-called `Ciprés de las Guaitecas` Pilgerodendron uviferum. This is an endemic Patagonian species, and its wood is very appreciated because of its endurance. However, it`s been heavily logged, and now is endangered. Anthropologically, the colonists themselves were from the large island of Chiloé, located much further to the North. The coasts of Aysén and its southern neighbor region of Magallanes, were the core of the Kawéskar territory, i.e. the native people inhabiting these lands for thousands of years. Their numbers have been dwindling and very few of them remain now. By last, the initial years of Caleta Tortel were marked by tragedy. In 1906, 33 Chilean workers died abandoned by the company which had hired them -the Río Baker Company- to build up several structures there in Tortel. Nowadays, Tortel is emerging from its past towards a hopefully more bright future, as thanks to its incredible surroundings it’s quietly becoming a hotspot for ecotourism.

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Caleta Tortel, a tiny coastal hamlet located in the midst of Aysen Southern Chile’s fjords

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