Wed 02/05-2012 Day 247

My "unofficial" arrival at night in Valparaiso. landing via zodiac!

Pos: here
Loc: Valparaiso
Acc: Cristian and Ignacia’s home
Dist: 53,8 km
Start: 8:45 End: 18:45

Ick bün all dor...

(Low German, from “Der Hase und der Igel” – meaning “Hehehe, I am already there…”)


Sorry, landing in Quintay as planned was impossible today…will write more tomorrow.

“Official” arrival as planned in Valparaiso Thursday around noon on the position above.


Now – how was that day? Forecast was massive 4 m+ swell, but low winds in the morning. In the afternoon, winds around 12 knots. I could paddle that! Conveniently in the morning, with a bit more chop on top of the big swell in the afternoon…

But I was actually not really planning to paddle also in the afternoon. I was supposed to paddle only 20 km to Quintay, where Rodrigo told me would be a  “safe” old whaler’s village landing spot…but what is “safe” in 4 meters swell?

I saw already on Algarrobo’s beach this morning getting out is more tricky than yesterday’s easy getting in on 2,5 meters swell. I had to cut diagonal through a narrow gap of unbroken waves and had to obviously follow two red buoys, which were marking the channel, I assumed, where “most likely” were no breakers. On “normal” days…today, there was no one on the water!

I had to wait a bit until the heavy morning fog was lifting, and once I thought I could go the young local Navy officer in Algarrobo where my kayak was stored at the Capitania court didn’t want to let my kayak out of the fenced area! He had to make a bunch of phone calls to get his own personal “ok” to let me go. My god!!!! No action without a chain of officials to reinsure him…

I launched well through the channel, and once off the coast, the swell was BIG, but no problem to paddle. I was just wondering about the landing…

Coming around the headland into Rada Quintay, I realized already due to the breakers, the narrow beach open to the north may be not possible to land on today – but I had my Plan “B”. The breakers around the entrance were so scary and I guessed I thought I saw huge waves rolling into the beach also.

I quickly made my decision – no way to land here! And kept on paddling another 30 km toward Valparaiso. Daylight for this distance was enough! I notified on calling my boyfriend Peter about my changed plans, and he emailed the Navy to forward my new plan to the relevant places. But still some other Navy office started to miss me at some point! Too many men working on one women…

We were requesting no “official” reception, as the “official” arrival was scheduled for tomorrow around noon, with a bunch of press and other efforts. I’ll make an “official” arrival tomorrow!

I obviously had to paddle now into the afternoon’s wind, but once I was around the two long jutting out north western points and into the Bahia Laguna Verde, the water, which was on top of the big swell very choppy reflecting back from the steep cliffs, became a little calmer. Thank goodness…But I had now the wind and swell directly from behind, and occasionally got surfed down with more than 20 km/hr! But it was not really breaking, and got more and more calmer approaching Punta Angeles.

I called Peter again about two hours before my estimated arrival at 4.30 pm, to get in touch with my host Cristian Araneda, if he’d be already available tonight to pick me up. Yes, he was! I was planning to either land on the small beach before the harbor, or to paddle into the harbor.

No beach in any Caleta was a landing option today. I turned around the headland into the Bahia de Valparaiso, and the water became calm, just a swell rest was moving up and down.

Cristian was calling me on my cell phone just after Punta Angeles, and told me he was on a safe beach past the harbor, where I could easily land. Ok……I wanted to be polite and to see where he was. As he had no GPS position, but only sent me a link to his position, I first couldn’t read it on my phone, and he was calling me frequently 12-15 times to guide me to his spot. Time was proceeding on all those calls, and once I was paddling past a huge Navy boat anchoring outside the harbor, the Navy harbor authorities started to also call me three times about my whereabouts…I tried to make them understand a friend was waiting for me on some beach, but I didn’t know where yet…

I should not have my phone on on the water, as I can’t make progress in this way and paddle safely! But water was calm in the bay, just it got later and later…

Eventually, I was reaching the beach where Cristian was waiting for me all across the bay of Valparaiso, and soon realized surely this one was a very steep dumping beach! The wash up was about ten meters – too dangerous to land!

He guided me to a staircase on a metal jetty where he guessed I could land, but sorry, I have a heavy loaded carbon fiberboat, and no empty plastic boat to drag it up here on the swell moving up and down the sharp edged staircase!

I told Cristian, sorry, I need to paddle the 2 km back into the harbor! See you there! Cristian eventually got in touch with the harbor authorities, and I saw they eventually sent out a fast zodiac patrol boat to findme and to guide me in. But the driver was powering in high speed from his spot out to the false beach, close to the shore, and surely I was cutting directly across the 2 km to the port entrance…! I let them go, if he is rather speeding along than *looking* out for me – well…he came also back at highest speed, and even more close to the shore.

It eventually turned dark, and this magnificent red sky sunset including the beautifully to watch increasing city lights of Valparaiso rewarded me for all the hazard about getting guided to a beach not possible to land on!

At the harbor entrance lighthouse, I called the Navy on channel 16, and the patrol boat eventually found me and guided me in. Thanks!

The landing was a concrete harbor wall staircase…in today’s condition still the water was moving up and down about a meter! Nothing for me and my kayak, sorry!

I decided to do a detour via the big zodiac rubber boat – I was landing on it, we pulled up the boat, and the zodiac pulled up to the harbor wall where we could push the kayak over to helpful Navy officer hands! This was eventually working all right.

No big arrival buzz, and I was quite happy about it after this stressful last paddling day in biggest seas!

Cristian was taking me home to his fancy apartment in Vina del Mar, where his wife Ignacia was already having a nice dinner ready, and I could relax a bit. Thanks! A lot of press work is waiting for tomorrow!


38 comments on “Wed 02/05-2012 Day 247

Richard Hayes

Incredible, Freya – but that’s what it’s all about – the ability, strength and drive to do incredible things. All the best from the Newfoundland contingent – wish you were coming to the Kayak Newfoundland and Labrador Retreat the May 24th weekend…

No need, for the moment, to say “Take care out there…”


Of course I have been following your adventures from the get go and I am so pleased this leg is over! What a tremendous acheivement. COngratualtions and enjoy your rest!

Barbara G.

Freya, this whole trip is totally amazing. Big, fat congratulations from Husum! I will buy my boys a large ice-cream this weekend 🙂
I will have to change my morning routine from now on (have breakfast – turn on computer – read Freyas blog – start work) – but at least there is hope that things will be back to normal in the fall!
Enjoy the press and party madness, have a safe trip home and get some physical and mental rest.


Freya, CONGRATULATIONS!!! Felicitaciones!!!
Desde Entre Ríos, Concepción del Uruguay – CRU – TRU


Freya, CONGRATULATIONS !! It’s incredible what you have paddled ! Enjoy your rest and family now… Your daily updates was very interesting to read, and we wait for more pics !! FELICITACIONES y SUERTE. de Argentina.


Glückwunsch Freya – Wahnsinn, was Du geleistet hast!!!

Und vielen Dank, dass wir all die Monate daran teilhaben durften. Geniesse den Rummel und den Urlaub danach mit den Deinen!

Vielleicht kannst Du ja Vorträge etc. auch hier veröffentlichen?

Viele liebe Grüße
(die vor über XX Jahren mal in Husum bei Janny’s Eis verkauft hat)

Tere (Laredo, Texas

I’ve been following your blog since my friend Jeimy from Chile talked about you. You are the greatest!!!
What you have done requires too much passion. Such a brave lady deserve the best. Enjoy the warm of you family and friends while at home. You are an inspiration!!


Freyra, are a hero
a little pease of advice…get some spanish lesson while en germany, it will of much help, remember you are en latin countries

Randall Lackey

Congrats on finishing your first leg of this great Journey. enjoy your time off,Hope is all well with your family,friends and business. BUT, hurry back, we love reading of your adventures along your way and will miss you and look forward to your safe return to continue on your trip around SA.

Udo Beier


I have written for the German speaking fan’s of Freya a short summary about Freya’s first leg around South-America and published it in the KANU-FORUM of the “Deutschen Kanu-Verband e.V.” (DKV):

Sorry if you can’t understand German!

Best wishes from Hamburg: Udo Beier


Congratulations Freya! Well done!! Thank you for the wonderful and interesting Blogs. Enjoy your rest.

Best Regards,


Freya!!!!!! Glückwünsche noch und nöcher. Eine tolle Leistung. Genieße Dein Glück und ein paar ruhige Tage. Haben immer wieder deinen Trip verfolgt und deine Erlebnisse gelesen.Der letzte Tag muss heavy gewesen sein!

Petra und das gesamte Aquapac-Team

Well done, Freya! Glad you are safe and sound. Such a big accomplishment.

You are truly an inspiration. Maddie sends her best wishes also.

es isr geschafft,—herzlichen glückwunsch und viel spass, ruhe und erholung in der heimat. es war eine historische leistung,gepaart mit spannenden beschreibungen,die ebenfalls jetzt wohl schon legendär sind. lass die korken knallen. was trinkt man insüdamerika,– caipirinha z.b ist lecker. schöne grüss


Congratulations Freya,
well done – you made it! I read all your daily blogs with fascination, and I’m glad you made it safe and sound to Valparaiso. What an achievment!
I’ll be in Husum next week and have an ice-cream at Janny’s!

Muchas felicitaciones Freja! y gracias por la posibilidad que nos distes de haber podido seguir tu hermoza y gran aventura atravez de tu blogg, eres un simbolo de inspiracion para todos aquellos que practicamos la navegacion en kayak.

Vincent NYC

Well done. Pop open the champagne and celebrate a great accomplishment.

Chuck H.

Congratulations on a terrific achievement, Freya. Hard to believe that you’ve been out on this “little” trip since the end of August … more than eight months! Best wishes on your “official” arrival today, and for a wonderful homecoming in Hussum in a week or so. Bravo!

Congratulations …. it´s a ´pitty we could meet here ion Puerto Varas as I was guiding a seakayak trip top the Fjords of Pumalin Park, close to Hornopirén, X Region.

Big congratulations Freya shakti ; What a huge perfomance ; you are the uncontested worldchampion & olympic gold medalist of the Seakayaking comunity of this planet ; Respect and I take my helmet of for you !! Way to go ; I am of the same opinion as Mister Udo Beyer and I am sure my friends & collegues of the seakayaking communitie of the Netherlands NKV do think also you certainly deserve this honour .Being on the sea in big swells with alot of gear we certainly understand your enormous achievement!! Congrats again Freya Enjoy your well deserved rest in Hunsum & I hope gladly to meet you one day ; Best wishes from Belgium (Speaking for the Belgian Seakayakers VKKV ) ps I am also very thrilled to go and get my brand new EPIC X18sp exped tomorow in Wormer; Amsterdam (if the Nederlandish customs are kind enough to let go the Epic containertruck in Rotterdam this afternoon :-)))Greets Philippe de Wergifosse


247 days!! Enjoy your time at home with friends and family. Many thanks for all the up dates. Cheers!!


Congrats Freya. Have fun today. Now you will be really rested for the press and welcome community. Glad you are safe and healthy. Enjoy being reunited with your family and friends. More peace, Karen

PAULA (cabo de hornos)


Udo Beier

Congratulation Freya!

I did’t thought you will round Australia. But sharks, crocs, jelly fishes etc. were no reason for you to “throw the towel”!

I did’t thought you will round the southern “corner” of South America. But gale, storm, dumpers, fat breakers, rocky cliffs – though that were dreadful for us, the readers of your blog – were only really exciting for you and perhaps the reason to stop paddling for some days, but never a reason to “throw your wing paddle”!

Some 80 years ago some brave mountain boy-climbers got an olympic medal of climbing for the first time the Eiger North Wall in Switzerland.

It is time that now in the year of the summer olympic games in London a girl-sea kayaker will get a similar olympic metall. Or is it a greater performance to jump 9 m in 2 sec. or to perform a triple summersault with a double screw from 1 m springboard?

Best wishes from Germany:
Udo Beier (Speaker of the German Sea Kayakers (DKV))

Jörg Hofferbert

Welch ein timing: An Silvester am Kap Horn und nun genau einen Tag nach dem Tag der Arbeit (an welchem Du trotzdem gearbeitet hast 😉 ) am einstweiligen Ziel.

Dich mit Superlativen zu überschütten, hat seine absolute Berechtigung.

Genieße nun Deinen “Urlaub”, obgleich ich inzwischen Deine Berichte sehr vermissen werde.

Herzliche Grüße



Herzlichen Glückwunsch, Freya! War auch aus der Ferne eine spannende Tour.
Beste Grüße, Eckart


Super Freya Shakti! Erhol dich schön im Sommer. Wir können es jetzt schon kaum erwarten im Herbst wieder deine Berichte zu lesen.
Die Atacama ruft!


Herzlichen Glückwunsch Freya! Hurra Hurra Hurra 🙂 🙂 🙂 Du bist einfach klasse, toll, super , spitze einzigartig! Eine tolle Leistung , ich hoffe, da steigt eine Party. Bin im Gedanken da.. Geniesse den Erfolg Freya, Du hast es verdient. Du bist eine Ikone der Frauen, aller Paddlerinnen. Viele Dank dafür, dass wir jeden Tag auf Deinen Blog lesen konnten, verfolgen konnten was Du machtest und dachtest. Könntest gut ein Buch aus dem Blog schreiben, dieses wäre lebendig und super interesaant.
Freya herzlichen Glückwunsch, geniesse es, denke an Dich
werde Deinen Blog vermissen

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