Steve Happ Photography Ramblings and dissertations

October 5, 2018

Chile to Australia

Filed under: General,South America — Tags: — admin @ 10:47 am

Valparaiso to Newcastle

It was time to go home. I caught a local bus from my hostel on the hill to the terminal at Valparaiso centro.

Valparaiso Bus Terminal
Valparaiso Bus Terminal.

I had some lunch and then caught the bus at 1pm to Pajaritos terminal. At Pajaritos I bumbled around getting a uber taxi to my airbnb room.

My Room in Santiago
My Room in Santiago

This was my airbnb room in Santiago near the airport. I had crashed a teenage girl’s room with posters of anime and korean boy bands. Hideous. There was even a purple unicorn. Yewww. And five scottish terriers.

My breakfast in Chile
My breakfast in Chile

This is your standard breakfast I used to have in Argentina. Two media lunas and a cup of coffee. I got a colectivo taxi from my airbnb room and had breakfast at Pajaritos terminal, where I caught the bus to the airport.

On the way to the airport
On the way to the airport

This is the freeway on the way to Santiago Airport.

Flying over the ice flows
Flying over the ice flows

This is the view from the airplane flying to Melbourne. We flew over the edge of Antarctica and the ocean was covered in icebergs.

My plane to Newcastle
My plane to Newcastle

I stayed in Melbourne at a hotel near the airport and in the morning got a plane to Newcastle.

Flying into Newcastle Airport
Flying into Newcastle Airport

Here I am flying over Stockton Beach coming down to Williamtown airport. At the airport I got the bus to Newcastle and then another one to Swansea. Home again.

September 29, 2018

Valparaiso Harbour

Filed under: General,South America — Tags: — admin @ 10:42 pm

Valparaiso – Chile – Day Two.

Yesterday I caught the bus into town. I got a pino empanada from the panaderia and sat down at the bus terminal and had my lunch.

Traffic Jam at the markets
Traffic Jam at the markets.

It was chaos around the markets. Buses and cars and taxis were hussling with people with loaded vegetables on carts, with shoppers rushing around all over the place. A complete mad-house.

Selling Vegetables
Selling Vegetables

There were stalls surrounding the markets with people selling all kinds of stuff, mainly vegetables. You can buy anything on the streets – even toilet paper and dish washing detergent.

Launching a rubber ducky
Launching a rubber ducky

I worked out how to get to the water-front and made my way to the wharf, where there were lots of scuba divers getting ready to go on their dives.

Harbour and foreshore
Harbour and foreshore.

Valparaiso has a pretty massive bay with deep water, so it is perfect for a port.

Coastal Train
Coastal Train

This train ran along the coast past Vina del Mar, and beyond that I have no idea.

September 27, 2018

A Tourist in Valparaiso

Filed under: General,South America — Tags: — admin @ 11:01 pm

Valparaiso – trendy and bohemian

I was up at 5:30am this morning. My taxi came early and I was off to the airport at Arica. I was hours too early so I bought an expensive coffee and cheese sandwich for breakfast and sat down to wait for the checkin to open. I checked in and went through security. I am like a robot now going through security. Belt off, wallet, phone, passport in a plastic bag. Step through the gate, get patted down, get dressed again.

The view from my hostel room
The view from my hostel room

I arrived in Santiago at 12:30 and jumped on a bus to the Pajaritos Terminal, where I bought a ticket to Valparaiso and jumped straight on the bus.

Steep hills of Valparaiso
Steep hills of Valparaiso

At Valparaiso Terminal, the tourist kiosk told me which bus to get to my hostel, and I settled in for a while.

Trendy cafes
Trendy cafes

In the afternoon, I went for a walk down the hill. The area is all trendy with boho cafes and shops. So funny. I wanted to get to the water but got as far as a big steep drop-off and could not get any further so I turned back.

The harbour
The harbour

A little corner of the city
A little corner of the city

Too many steps to go down there.

September 26, 2018

Paseo Lancha Puerto Arica

Filed under: Birds,South America — Tags: — admin @ 9:25 pm

Arica Harbour Boat Tour

After I took some surfing photos at El Gringo, I wandered down to the fishing harbour to see about a boat tour “Paseo Lancha”. The guy said I was the only taker and to come back at 12:30. I went and got a cup of coffee and some lunch and then went back to the wharf.

big fat Sea Lions - lobos Marinos
big fat Sea Lions – lobos Marinos

There were still no people so I wandered around the fishing harbour checking out all the cleaning of fish and the birds and sea lions fighting over the fish scraps.

Black-crowned Night-heron waiting for some fish
Black-crowned Night-heron waiting for some fish

Cleaning Fish
Cleaning Fish

Peruvian Pelicans want their share too
Peruvian Pelicans want their share too

Fish cleaning wharf
Fish cleaning wharf

Finally there were enough people so we set off on out boat tour. The boat ride cost 3000 pesos, about $5.

Panoramic view of the  harbour
Panoramic view of the harbour

We went along the wharves and then out to sea a bit to the buoys where a bunch of seals were sunbaking.

Seals on a buoy
Seals on a buoy

Then back into the harbour and back to dock. Short and sweet. But I think we saw enough.

American Oystercatcher
American Oystercatcher

Red-legged Cormorant
Red-legged Cormorant

immature Inca Tern
immature Inca Tern

adult Inca Tern
adult Inca Tern

Peruvian Booby
Peruvian Booby

Street wiring
Street wiring

And last but not least the sight outside my hotel room window. The wiring in the street is very chaotic. But not as mad as India.

Arica bird list

American Oystercatcher
Red-legged Cormorant
Neotropic Cormorant
Inca Tern
Peruvian Booby
Black-crowned Night-heron
Peruvian Pelican

El Gringo Day Two

Filed under: South America,Surfing — Tags: — admin @ 7:47 pm

El Gringo – Arica – Day 2

This morning I went to El Gringo again. It was a bit smaller but there were a few more guys out. The wind was blowing off-shore nicely and there were shifting peaks to be had.

maxi
maxi

Diego in the tube
Diego in the tube

Maxi in the barrel
Maxi in the barrel

maxi in tube
maxi in tube

getting bounced around
getting bounced around

and getting launched
and getting launched

Nice turn Alberto
Nice turn Alberto

Upside down
Upside down

going right
going right

September 25, 2018

Birds of Arica

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 8:33 pm

Arica Birding

This morning I went to the Isla del Alacran to take some photos of the surfing. Most of the photos I took were birds, which was good because I got a new bird and a decent photo of a Blackish Oystercatcher.

Red-legged Cormorant
Red-legged Cormorant (Phalacrocorax gaimardi)

The yellow bill on this Red-legged Cormorant had me confused for a while. Thanks to the crew on the Facebook bird id group for sorting me out.

Belcher's gull
Belcher’s gull (Larus belcheri)

The black and red spots on this Belcher’s Gull are quite distinctive.

Blackish Oystercatcher
Blackish Oystercatcher (Haematopus ater)

I got a shot of some Blackish Oystercatcher yesterday on my point and shoot camera, so I needed some decent photos and here one is.

Peruvian Pelican
Peruvian Pelican (Pelecanus thagus)

Peruvian Booby
Peruvian Booby (Sula variegata)

grey gull
grey gull (Leucophaeus modestus)

Arica bird list

Red-legged Cormorant (Phalacrocorax gaimardi)
Belcher’s gull (Larus belcheri)
Blackish Oystercatcher (Haematopus ater)
West Peruvian Dove
Neotropic Cormorant
Whimbrel
Peruvian Pelican
Peruvian Booby
grey gull (Leucophaeus modestus)
Ruddy Turnstone

El Gringo

Filed under: South America,Surfing — Tags: — admin @ 5:38 pm

Surfing El Gringo – Arica, Chile

I got out of bed about 7:30am because that is when the sun comes up. Chile is two hours ahead of Peru. Do not ask me to work that one out. I walked down the end of the street and caught a bus to La Isla del Alacran. There was nobody out when I went surfing but I bumped into a couple of dudes named Max and Diego who allowed me to tag along when they went for a surf out at El Gringo.

Diego's First Wave
Diego’s First Wave

El Gringo is really scary. It breaks onto rocks. There is no easy way out or in. You have to jump off the rocks and force your way out through the very powerful breaking waves.

Maxi taking the drop
Maxi taking the drop

After this wave Maxi lost his boogie board and had to swim in. It was a major struggle with waves breaking all over him and the rip dragging him out again.

Maxi in the barrel
Maxi in the barrel

Maxi eventually got in and retrieved his boogie board and then paddled straight out again!

Maxi take off
Maxi take off

Maxi hit a bump on the take-off and got launched.

Diego going right
Diego going right

There were some good right-handers coming in as well. Some of them were lining up and tubing massively.

Maxi drop
Maxi drop

The wind starting blowing onshore about ten o’clock so the waves were still glassy.

Diego in the tube
Diego in the tube

Diego made sure that his last wave was a good one. Thank you to Maxi and Diego for the opportunity to take some photos at this famous surf spot. Woot!

First Day in Chile

Filed under: Birds,General,Surfing — Tags: — admin @ 1:17 am

Mollendo to Arica

I got going from Mollendo about 10am and walked up the hill to get a taxi to Ilo. At Ilo I swapped over and got another collectivo taxi to Tacna.

A point between Ilo and Tacna
A point between Ilo and Tacna

I found my hostel next to the bus terminal in Tacna and settled in for the night. I got all my money changed over to Chilean pesos and so I was set to go. The next morning I walked up the road to the international terminal and jumped straight into a taxi for the border. The border was the easiest and quickest one I have ever been through. I arrived at the terminal in Arica, Chile, got a new chip for my phone, changed the rest of my money and found my way to the next hostel.

Church at Arica
old church at Arica

In the afternoon I blundered around until I found my way to the surf spot at Arica. The wind was wrong but I saw how it broke. There were some guys surfing around the other side.

Mounted police
Mounted police

I am going to go back tomorrow morning early to see if I can get some photos on my real camera.

Blackish Oystercatcher
Blackish Oystercatcher (Haemotopus ater)

These Blackish Oystercatcher were taken on the point and shoot. Hopefully tomorrow I will get some shots on the canon. They are found in Chile, Peru, and Argentina.

Surfing the left
Surfing the left

December 27, 2010

Birding Sites in Chile

Filed under: South America — Tags: — admin @ 11:49 pm

Birding Sites in Chile

Brazil, Chile, Venezuela and Uruguay are the most expensive countries in South America while Bolivia Ecuador Colombia and Argentina are the cheapest.
Homestays in Chile ~7000 pesos ~= $15. Chile may be a good place to buy a car or motorcycle. You could aim for a budget of about $25 per day.

Reserva Nacional Rio Clarillo – via Pirque.
Arica – beaches.
Putre
PN Lauca – Lago Chungara wetlands.
Salar de Surire
Atacama Desert
Iquique

La Campana NP – entrance at Ocoa and El Cojon.
Coastal Wetlands at Laguna El Peral and Lake Penuelas.
Pelagic trip from Valparaiso or Concon.
Central Chile – Cordillera – El Yeso.

In the Lakes District, go to Concepcion, Los Angeles to Parque Nacional del Laja – stay at Albanico – Hotel Malalcura.
Temuco – Cerro Nielol
PN Conguillio – Laguna Captren.
Concepcion – Nevados de Chillan.
RN Radal-Siete Tazas – east of Curico.
Vilches – RN Altos de Lircay.
Nahuelbuta NP
Rio Cruces Nature Sanctuary
Santa Maria
Puyehue NP
Chiloe Island
Puerto Montt.

Ski – Valle Nevada, Farellones-Colorado, Parva.
Hostel Forrestal in Santiago.

Chile Resources

Chile Backpacking Hostels
Trip Report

Nigel Wheatley, “Where to Find Birds in South America”.
Mark Pearman, “The Essential Guide to Birding in Chile”.

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