Pucon is often referred to as the Queenstown (NZ) of South America. This is pretty close to the mark and there are lots of adventure companies, cafes and restaurants. If the weather is good this is the kind of place that will suck you in.
A few minutes walk from town is a very nice campground where we and a couple of other overlanders took over a large grassy clearing to make our own. When we arrived we were excited to see that the Pickering family (Jago, Lucy, Jed, Tate and Teaghan) were already here. They have a big Tatra truck that was built in the same workshop as The Beast and last time we saw the truck it was only half built.
We spent a couple of days just hanging out in Pucon, our friends liferemotely.com also arrived here so we had a big meal one night with Lucy and Jago, The Remotely’s and an English/SA couple who were backpacking at the campsite. It was a complete feast with 2 types of ribs, chicken, beef and all the trimmings. The cooking involved no less than 5 grills and the night was finished off with tequila shots. Nobody can quite remember whose idea that was but needless to say the following day was a rest day!
A few km’s up the road from Pucon are the Ojos del Caburgua which are a series of spring fed waterfalls. There are also a couple of km’s of very nice walking trails here which we enjoyed.
Continuing up the same road we drove up to the Huequehue National Park. The dirt road up to the park was in very good condition although the last 6 or 7km’s were very narrow. When we reached the park however, we were blocked by a low entrance gate but the Ranger very kindly moved his truck so we were able to squeeze into a layby just outside. This left us with a limited number of trails to do so we headed on up a short (5km) but very steep trail to get some volcano views.
As we neared the top we moved out of dense forest into a more open forest dominated by endangered araucaria trees (Monkey Puzzle Trees). Eventually we cleared the forest completely into an upland plateau with beautifully clear views of four snow-capped volcanoes.