Desolación Island

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For other uses, see Desolation Island.
Desolation Island


Desolación Island at the west entrance of the Strait of Magellan. Click on the image to obtain the big map
Location Chile
Archipelago Tierra del Fuego
Area 1,352 km2 (522 sq mi)
Coastline 866.1 km (538.17 mi)
Highest elevation 1,128 m (3,701 ft)
Highest point Monte Harte Dyke
Population 0
Additional information
NGA UFI=-879556

Desolación Island (Spanish: Isla Desolación) (Spanish for Desolation) is an island at the western end of the Strait of Magellan in the Magallanes y la Antártica Chilena Region, Chile.

Its northwestern point is called Cabo Pilar (Cape Pillar), and marks the entrance to the Strait of Magellan. Off Cape Pillar are three rocks in the sea, called Islotes Evangelistas (the Apostles).[1][2]

Desolación Island in fiction[edit]

The Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child novel The Ice Limit described an expedition to Isla Desolacion near Cape Horn in Chile. The map in the (paperback) edition incorrectly identifies easterly Isla Wollastone as Isla Desolacion.

James Michener's novel Hawaii depicts an attempt by a sailing ship to pass the Straits of Magellan, describing the western exit past Desolation Island as the most difficult part of the passage.

In Herman Melville's novel Moby-Dick, narrator Ishmael recalls a marble tablet at a whalemen's chapel in New Bedford which pays homage to a whaleman named John Talbot, who lost his life whaling "near the Isle of Desolation, off Patagonia".

In Patrick O'Brian's novel Blue at the Mizzen, a British man-of-war is sent on a peace time mission to Chile and the Straights of Magellan.

Coordinates: 53°06′S 73°54′W / 53.10°S 73.90°W / -53.10; -73.90


  1. ^ J. David Williams (1873). "Patagonia". The Peoples' Pictorial Atlas. New York. Retrieved 2012-01-10 (map) 
  2. ^ J. H. Colton (1857). "Patagonia". New York. Retrieved 2012-01-10 (map) 

See also[edit]

External links[edit]