Preparing for the climate of Patagonia

Preparing for the climate of Patagonia
Aysén Information

The weather in Patagonia is unpredictable ? it changes rapidly and is prone to numerous conditions in short periods of time, prompting the popular local saying, ?Be prepared to experience all four seasons in one day.? Here are some pointers!

When hiking, biking or practicing water sports in Patagonia, it is important to be prepared with layers of clothing that allow you to add or subtract, based on the ever-changing conditions. 
For most activities, including hiking, you’ll first want a thin, inner-layer of polyester or polypropylene to help insulate and keep you dry.  Next, we suggest a layer of fleece or wool, for warmth, and finally, an outside layer to protect you from water, wind and rain.  You’ll want good, well broken-in boots, wool or polypropylene socks, extra shoes for time in camp, a wool cap, sunglasses and gloves. 
If you are back-packing, horse-trekking, kayaking, or canoeing, the goal for keeping safe is staying warm and dry. Line backpacks and dry-bags with an extra plastic trash bag and then pack your clothes, sleeping bags, etc, in smaller plastic bags inside. Be prepared with the following items:  first aid kit, whistle, head lamp, map and compass, gators, specialized gear for your chosen activity, a water bottle and snacks. 
In Patagonia, people partake in outdoor activities year-round; but always with respect and consideration of weather, including wind and snow cover.  Check the latest forecasts, trail, and water conditions with experts, e.g.,  rangers, port authorities, or police,  before starting your activities. Always be prepared to put activities on hold, if the conditions aren’t suitable.  Register your plans with Park or Reserve officials and a friend back home; especially if you will be out of contact for multiple days.
The amount of daylight you will encounter varies significantly in these latitudes (49? 20’ S).  For example, towards the end of September, you are likely to encounter around 12 hours of daylight each day. Just three months later, around Christmas, you will experience approximately 18 hours of sunlight.  Daily sunlight hours gradually shorten during the fall months in Patagonia, reaching a low in midwinter (July) of approximately 8 hours per day.  This variable affects outdoor activities and should be considered when forming your plans. 

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