Futaleufú, Chile

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Futaleufú
Town and Commune
Location of Futaleufú commune in Los Lagos Region
Location of Futaleufú commune in Los Lagos Region
Futaleufú is located in Chile
Futaleufú
Futaleufú
Location in Chile
Nickname(s): "Futa"
Coordinates: 43°11′0″S 71°52′0″W / 43.18333°S 71.86667°W / -43.18333; -71.86667Coordinates: 43°11′0″S 71°52′0″W / 43.18333°S 71.86667°W / -43.18333; -71.86667
Country Chile
Region Los Lagos
Province Palena
Government[1] [2]
 • Type Municipality
 • Alcalde Arturo Carvallo Pardo (DC)
Area[3]
 • Total 1,280.0 km2 (494.2 sq mi)
Elevation 353 m (1,158 ft)
Population (2012 Census)[3]
 • Total 2,297
 • Density 1.8/km2 (4.6/sq mi)
 • Urban 1,153
 • Rural 673
Sex[3]
 • Men 954
 • Women 872
Area code(s) 56 + 65
Website Municipality of Futaleufú

Futaleufú is a Chilean town and commune located in Northern Patagonia, specifically in Palena Province, Los Lagos Region. The town is named after the world famous Futaleufú River, one of the premier whitewater destinations in the world. The name Futaleufu is a Mapudungun word meaning "Big River" and the town is the jump off point for many outfitters catering to tourists who come from around the world to raft or kayak the river. High tourist season in Futaleufu is from late November to April. The town has a growing infrastructure of small hotels, bed and breakfasts, and restaurants, but still maintains its intimate "frontier town" feel. Several river outfitters also operate lodgings and camps on the river in and around the town.

The town of Futaleufu has hosted international whitewater events and stages an annual festival called "Futafest" every year. The festival attracts river enthusiasts from around the world.

Geopolitically, the town of Futaleufu has become increasingly important due to the eruption of Chaitén Volcano and the subsequent destruction of the town of Chaitén.[4] Since that date, Futaleufú has become the provincial capital of Palena. The town is 7 kilometers (approximately 4 miles) to the Argentine border and has a population of about 2,000. The Palena Province in Northern Patagonia is remote, so tourists who come to raft or kayak the river usually arrive by flying through Bariloche or Esquel, Argentina. The other option is by flying from Santiago to Puerto Montt, Chile, connecting on a small charter flight to Chaiten, and driving 3 hours to Futaleufu.

The main income for the community is fly fishing and outdoor sports, particularly white water rafting, together with forestry and cattle farming. A gravel road links the town to Trevelin in Argentina and to the Carretera Austral.

Climate[edit]

Climate data for Futaleufú, Chile
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 34.3
(93.7)
34.0
(93.2)
33.1
(91.6)
24.4
(75.9)
26.0
(78.8)
17.8
(64)
18.6
(65.5)
17.7
(63.9)
22.8
(73)
27.6
(81.7)
31.0
(87.8)
34.0
(93.2)
34.3
(93.7)
Average high °C (°F) 20.8
(69.4)
21.2
(70.2)
18.9
(66)
14.4
(57.9)
9.7
(49.5)
6.5
(43.7)
6.2
(43.2)
8.7
(47.7)
12.1
(53.8)
14.8
(58.6)
17.1
(62.8)
19.1
(66.4)
14.1
(57.4)
Daily mean °C (°F) 16.8
(62.2)
16.6
(61.9)
14.4
(57.9)
10.6
(51.1)
6.9
(44.4)
4.2
(39.6)
3.6
(38.5)
5.7
(42.3)
8.4
(47.1)
11.0
(51.8)
13.5
(56.3)
15.5
(59.9)
10.6
(51.1)
Average low °C (°F) 10.4
(50.7)
9.7
(49.5)
8.1
(46.6)
5.8
(42.4)
3.8
(38.8)
1.8
(35.2)
1.0
(33.8)
2.0
(35.6)
3.3
(37.9)
5.3
(41.5)
7.6
(45.7)
9.5
(49.1)
5.7
(42.3)
Record low °C (°F) −9.0
(15.8)
0.8
(33.4)
−2.0
(28.4)
−4.1
(24.6)
−8.0
(17.6)
−12.0
(10.4)
−9.6
(14.7)
−8.9
(16)
−7.0
(19.4)
−3.1
(26.4)
−1.6
(29.1)
0.6
(33.1)
−12.0
(10.4)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 98.9
(3.894)
81.1
(3.193)
95.3
(3.752)
165.9
(6.531)
265.3
(10.445)
293.5
(11.555)
300.9
(11.846)
253.0
(9.961)
164.6
(6.48)
127.3
(5.012)
108.6
(4.276)
126.8
(4.992)
2,081.2
(81.937)
Avg. precipitation days 10 8 11 14 18 19 19 18 15 13 12 12 169
Average relative humidity (%) 59 60 65 73 82 86 84 77 70 64 61 60 70.1
Source: Dirección Meteorológica de Chile[5]

Demographics[edit]

According to the 2002 census of the National Statistics Institute, Futaleufú spans an area of 1,280 km2 (494 sq mi) and has 1,826 inhabitants (954 men and 872 women). Of these, 1,153 (63.1%) lived in urban areas and 673 (36.9%) in rural areas. The population grew by 5.2% (91 persons) between the 1992 and 2002 censuses.[3]

Administration[edit]

As a commune, Futaleufú is a third-level administrative division of Chile administered by a municipal council and led by an alcalde who is directly elected every four years. Since 200, the alcalde has been Mr. Arturo Carvallo Pardo (PDC).[1][2]

Within the electoral divisions of Chile, Futaleufú is represented in the Chamber of Deputies by Gabriel Ascencio (PDC) and Alejandro Santana (RN) as part of the 58th electoral district (together with Castro, Ancud, Quemchi, Dalcahue, Curaco de Vélez, Quinchao, Puqueldón, Chonchi, Queilén, Quellón, Chaitén, Hualaihué and Palena). The commune is represented in the Senate by Rabindranath Quinteros (PS) and Iván Moreira (UDI), as part of the 17th senatorial constituency (Los Lagos Region).

The Futaleufú River the border of Chile and Argentina

Landscape and attractions[edit]

The Futaleufú River is commonly rated by specialized media as one of the top three in the world for kayaking and rafting,.[6][7] The river flows in from Argentina, through the town, and empties into the fjord-shaped Yelcho Lake. Day trips and multi-day trips are available on "the Futa" while several of its tributaries, such as the Espolón River and the Azul (Blue) River, can be rafted, canoed, or navigated by boat.

Two lakes, Lake Lonconao and Lake Espolón, offer opportunities for paddling and fly fishing close to the town of Futaleufú. Fly fishing is also possible on the Futaleufú River, the Yelcho River (the largest river in the Futaleufú Valley) and Espolon River, which is the largest tributary of the Futaleufú and contains brown trout and rainbow trout, as well as salmon in April and May.[8]

Other nearby attractions include the Futaleufú National Reserve, known for its population of Huemul (South Andean deer), and Pumalín Park, Chile's largest private nature reserve. Pumalín is a public-access park, with an extensive infrastructure of trails, campgrounds, and visitor centres.[9]

Canyoning and rappelling is also possible in the Futaleufú valley, with its numerous ravines and waterfalls,[10][11] as well as horse riding and mountain biking.


References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Asociación Chilena de Municipalidades" (in Spanish). Retrieved 27 January 2011. 
  2. ^ a b "Municipality of Futaleufú" (in Spanish). Retrieved 27 January 2011. 
  3. ^ a b c d "National Statistics Institute" (in Spanish). Retrieved 27 January 2010. 
  4. ^ Volcanic aftermath in Chaitén www.livingatlaschile.com retrieved December 17, 2013
  5. ^ "Estadisca Climatologica Tomo III (pg 127-150)" (PDF) (in Spanish). Dirección General de Aeronáutica Civil. March 2001. Retrieved January 15, 2013. 
  6. ^ Trip Advisor rating on Futaleufú rafting www.tripadvisor.co.uk retrieved December 17, 2013
  7. ^ Futaleufu Rafting & Multi-Sport Adventure in Chile www.bbxrafting.com retrieved December 17, 2013
  8. ^ Fly fishing Futaleufu www.esqueloutfitters.com retrieved December 18, 2013
  9. ^ [1] retrieved December 18, 2013
  10. ^ Canyoning in Futaleufu www.livingatlaschile.com retrieved December 18, 2013
  11. ^ Canyoning www.exchile.com retrieved December 18, 2013

External links[edit]