Lady Florence Dixie Safari (Estancia)

summary
Dates
October to April
Location
Ultima Esperanza, Magellanes, Chile
Duration
10 days ( Estancia accomnodation)
Level
Intermediate riding skills
Size
Minimum of 4 people / maximum 6 people
Cost
Contact us for details

(includes transfers from Punta Arena, support vehicle, horses, good food, fine wines, guide and horseman)

Lady Florence Dixie was a wonderful Victorian character - a fantastic horsewoman with a great sense of adventure. Her life story is as fascinating as her family history. Enjoy this adventure staying at estancia houses most nights, mixed in with four nights of more simple sleeping arrangements in log cabin and camping, making this a real adventure. Relive the spirit of this 19th century Safari!

This safari is particularly unique to us – because the Douglas's (Florence Dixie's maiden name) are close friends and we can therefore share an in depth amount of fascinating detail surrounding this great character. Christine, a member of the family who now lives in Uruguay, will always be invited to help with the guiding of this trip.

The original trail of Lady Florence Dixie and her party crosses what now is the border of Chile and Argentina several times. We are unable to do this with such liberty these days! The ride has therefore been carefully explored to provide a great sense of adventure in the spirit of Dixie's adventure, picking up arguably the most spectacular part of their safari in the second half of our trip.

Los baguales, referring to wild horses in this context, is also the name of the amazing remote mountain range stooped in much legend and rarely frequented which we will ride towards. Florence Dixie describes on her first sighting how she was in awe of them. We will experience this early on in our safari, as they loom in the distance. We will stop at one or two remote puestos to take mate with the baqueanos. This is proper riding country and lends itself perfectly to lots of fast riding. The landscape will vary between beautiful lenga and nire beech forest, mountain trails, high summer lands, big open valley pastures and differing mountain ranges on the horizons. On safari is you will meet local people and have an opportunity to properly experience this very special part of Patagonia. We will pass through remote estancia lands and national park - favoured hunting ground of the Selk'nan Indians. Dixie notes their natural riding seat in her encounter with the Indians. You can imagine these nomadic people hunting and living in this terrain. It still has that aura.

You are coming on a unique journey, led by an experienced guide with a passion and knowledge of the land. Your guide will not only have a passion and knowledge on the Dixie history but also on the local folklore, cultural history, wildlife, the land and its flora. We know a spectacular valley where we can see condors close by in flight. Your guide's eyes and ears will be continuously peeled for glimpses of interesting sightings including the mighty 'aguila mora', the puma (sensed, but rarely seen). We will endeavour to have an experience with the Magallanic woodpecker; to be surrounded by a family group of this bird is a wonderful feeling. Migratory birds, from geese, swallows to flamingos should be spotted. We will be able to talk informatively on the wildlife we experience.

Enjoy good home cooked meals, quality meats and vegetarian dishes. We are wine enthusiasts and will have a fine selection of Chilean red available. We will have various spectacular views of Torres del Paine and neighbouring mountain ranges. Glorious lakes, river valleys and glaciers will be seen. Hospitable local Chilean families and baqueanos whom are friends will add a special touch to your journey. We aim to seek out (not guaranteed!) the wild horse herd that Dixie describes. They reside in a remote secluded glen in the Baguales mountains. Our last supper and night of the safari is in an estancia in this region, from where you will head homeward bound in the morning.

Itinerary
Day 01
Meet up at ´Sandy Point´ (Punta Arenas) Magallanes, southern Chilean Patagonia. Ancient habitation of the giants. Limitless distances on drive to hotel in Puerto Natales
Day 02
Drive to Estancia Lazo. Afternoon ride
Day 03
Ride to National Park. Overnight at hotel in park.
Day 04
Day ride in the park
Day 05
Ride across breadth of National Park to another Estancia.
Day 06
Day ride in Dixie footsteps crossing lakes and rivers.
Day 07
Ride to another estancia, passing remote valleys in the hoofprints of Dixie. 2 nights at simple house. Good going (like most days!). Chance of seeing semi – wild horses ( ariscos).
Day 08
Day ride up into mountains behind house with spectacular views.
Day 09
Day ride to main estancia house of this land. Big asado for final night.
Day 10
Support vehicle will take people onward to Natales or Punta Arenas for return journey.