Towards The Border Across The Hua Hum Pass

An amusing tour towards the Chilean lakes that includes navigation across Lake Pirihueico, with beautiful mountain range sceneries.

We left the city early along National Route 234 up to the detour located next to the Virgen de la Montaña cave. This rubble road is National Route 48, which leads directly to the Hua – Hum Pass, 45 km away from San Martín de los Andes.

Once on the 48 and after appreciating the beauty of Lake Lácar from some points of the road, 8km ahead lies Pampa de Trompul, identified with that name after the rock bearing the same name which is seen farther ahead. According to the Mapuche tradition, this rock formation located 800 m.a.s.l. “thunders strongly” over the valley when it is about to rain or snow.

After crossing this area, the road becomes winding and leafier. First, we passed by Yuco, a beautiful spot with small sandy beaches on the shores of Lake Lácar, and afterwards by the Nonthué primitive camping site, another fantastic nook in a windless bay. In this place, lies the narrowness that joins Lake Lácar and Lake Nonthué.

  • The Hua-Hum River

    The Hua-Hum River

  • Ferry Terminal Puerto Pirehueico

    Ferry Terminal Puerto Pirehueico

  • The Hua Hum ferry

    The Hua Hum ferry

  • Lake Pirihueico

    Lake Pirihueico

  • Volcanic lake

    Volcanic lake

  • Puerto Fuy

    Puerto Fuy

  • The beautiful beach of Choshuenco

    The beautiful beach of Choshuenco

We drove on. Some kilometers ahead, we passed by the Hua Hum inn, a coffee-shop and restaurant with a pier where lake excursions leaving from San Martín arrive. Very close, stands the Argentinian Customs office, mandatory stop to make the corresponding proceedings.
We moved ahead a little and left the international milestone where the Christ of Peace rises, carved in raulí wood by the inhabitants of the Easter Island, and we headed for the carabineer post to pass through all the Chilean controls.

On board the Hua Hum

Once the proceedings were over, we continued driving up to Lake Pirihueico, where we would take the Hua Hum ferry towards Puerto Fuy, the first Chilean district in this area. As we had already been informed about the crossing hours, we arrived early enough to have some mates on the lake shore. When the ferry was ready to leave, we got the car on board and made ourselves comfortable on deck to enjoy the ride. The weather was not precisely nice but we had about an hour and a half to travel this water mirror and see its surroundings. The Pirihueico, which in the Mapuche tongue means “snow puddle”, has volcanic origin and is surrounded by lush vegetation where the Choshuenco Volcano outstands.

Finally, we reached the shores of Puerto Fuy, a modest hamlet on the way to the community of Panguipulli. From there, there were only 55km left to reach that district, bordering the lake bearing the same name.

There are two ways or approaching Coñaripe, Villarrica and finally reaching Pucón. One option is passing by Neltume and taking the detour towards the Liquiñe and the Coñaripe hot spring resorts. This route is known as the Maderero road, which borders Lake Neltume and there is a junction at some point that joins both resorts. Without taking the detour, continue along the Añiques slope, with panoramic views of Lake Pellaifa behind every bend, until the southern side of the Villarrica Volcano is made out.

A short distance away, lies the City of Coñaripe. The road continues around the volcano to the City of Villarrica and, after 20km more, lies the City of Pucón.

The other choice is to continue the journey up to Choshuenco and, along the left shore of Lake Panguipulli, reach the crossroads where you should turn right heading for Coñaripe. This route is much more busy as road conditions are better, although more kilometers must be traveled to reach destination.
Read complete Outing... Karina Jozami / Eduardo Epifanio

See more points of interest in San Martín de los Andes


Useful Data

Timetables: The pass is open all year round but the ferry works at different hours according to season and weather conditions. The reservation system by phone (56 02 3672600) works from 9am to 12pm.

Recommendations: Remember that there is usually one hour difference between Argentina and Chile, depending on the time of the year. Like in the other passes, it is forbidden to cross food and fresh vegetables.

Contact: Hua - Hum
(5210000) Panguipulli, X Región, Chile Cel: +56 42773450

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