RUGGED RENEWAL IN PATAGONIA
February 6-15, 2019 and February 22-March 1, 2019
Patagonia, the definition of rugged. In these two retreats we will explore the Northern gateway to the region. Beginning in the very Boulder-like town of Bariloche, we are in an excellent location to access deep blue glacially fed lakes for sea-kayaking as well as stunning ridge-line traverses and camping in the Nahuel Huapi National Park. We will enjoy some finer amenities as well, and then head South towards the small hippy town of El Bolson, outside of which is nestled a lodge that defies description. It's not 5-star-king-size-bed sort of high-end... instead... it's magic! Helena will offer reiki sessions and cooking classes while we soak up the restorative properties of this healing space. Three course dinners and wandering in the garden combine with the wood fired hot tub and slow pace of being removed from our daily stressors to result in a renewed perspective and a fresh return home.
See below for descriptions of both retreats: February 6-15, 2019 and February 22-March 1, 2019. The first includes expeditioning (traveling with all of our supplies in order to be able to camp in more remote parts of the wilderness), while the second is more lodge-based. Both include ample time to slow down and enjoy some finer amenities of the region.
*Details below are a general outline and will depend on weather, an ever changing factor in Patagonia, as well as the group.
Itinerary I: February 6-15, 2019
This retreat invites participants to renew and recenter as they engage with the joys and challenges of mid-life. With a blend of ruggedness* and rejuvenation, the group will enjoy both the awe of ascending Patagonian peaks while also relaxing in a wood-fired hot tub at the base of glacially fed rivers. We will provide opportunities for the movement between growth and comfort on this adventure in order to support the process of shifting perspectives and gaining new clarity on one's sense of purpose in life back home.
Day 1 Arrive in Bariloche by the afternoon and take a taxi to the hotel in order to have some down time or start to explore the mountain town before meeting the group and going out for a Welcome dinner and overview of the week.
Day 2 The ruggedness begins! We will transport to Lago Mascardi and begin our sea kayak adventure. After orientation and instruction, we'll head off for a mellow paddle to our first campsite of the trip: A beach with a view of Tronador (a snow covered volcano whose name translates to "thunder"). We will learn about and enjoy the traditional Argentinian beverage of maté and, weather permitting, sleep under the stars, getting to see a completely different view of constellations in the Southern Hemisphere.
Day 3 Awake early for optional meditation time, an offering that will be made available each day in order to support your deepening awareness of yourself in the here and now, away from your life at home, and in connection with the natural world. Back in our sea kayaks for a mid-day paddle, and then transport to Woodland Lodge for some down time and enjoyment of the surrounding garden.
Day 4 We head out again to the wilderness and start our three day backpacking exscursion with a gondola lift up to the peak of Catedral, a local ski area, and then hike the ridge line and enjoy epic views of Patagonian peaks. A steep descent will take us to Rucaco Valley, where we will camp for the night.
Day 5 Another day of backpacking and steep climbs will take us to Refugio Jakob on Lago Jakob, where we will have the option for a refreshing plunge into icy waters, and a cultural highlight of enjoying dinner at the refugio.
Day 6 We'll complete the three day backpack with an early morning walk out along the river, followed by a 2 hour transport to La Confluencia lodge, where we will be greeted with a delicious meal and views of the turquiose waters of Rio Azul.
Day 7 Morning meditation and yoga followed by a day of harvesting in the garden and cooking in the large open kitchen, learning about Argentinian food culture and connecting with the land. The afternoon will incorporate an optional Reiki session and use of the wood fired sauna and hot tub for restoration and rejuvination.
Day 8 After morning yoga on the deck we will to Cajon de Azul, a box canyon on the Rio Azul, and back in time for more healing sessions of self-care.
Day 9 We start the day with a short hike to the mirador, view, of the El Bolson valley where we will take some time for solo reflection as a time to begin integrating all that has happened on this week of adventure. Then a transport to the town of El Bolson and the artisan craft fair, before returning to Bariloche for a final Asado celebration dinner with our new friends from the week.
Day 10 We will spend our last morning in town with opportunities to buy gifts and enjoy the German style chocolate popular in the area. A final farewell lunch and then to the airport to say our goodbyes!
Itinerary II: February 22-March 1, 2019
Designed for women moving into the wiser years of life, this retreat is an opportunity to discover and embrace your gift to your larger community. With day hikes, yoga, cooking classes, and easy kayaking in one of the more beautiful regions of the world, we will connect with the land, learn from the community, and explore a new sense of purpose in the transition into later life. Daily activities will blend adventure travel with an opportunity to learn more about your self and your sense of purpose in your current stage of life.
Day 1 Arrive in Bariloche by noon and be transported to our lodge located 14 kilometers from the center of town, nestled into a patch of woods not too far from the shore of Nahual Huapi lake. We will enjoy a Welcome dinner at the lodge and begin to get to know one another, receiving also an overview of the week and having an opportunity to rest and recover from the long day of travel.
Day 2 We start with gentle yoga and mindfulness on the deck followed by a day hike and the exploration of intentional transitions through the stages of life.
Day 3 Today will include a beginner friendly sea-kayak trip to a beach where we will have a gentle yoga class and lunch provided. Kayak back for some personal time before dinner.
Day 4 Our biggest hike of the trip, we will move at a pace appropriate for the group while also pushing ourselves to dig a little deeper and tap into the mental toughness that wisdom provides. A hot tub soak is available back at the lodge, followed by local cuisine enjoyed at a nearby restuarant.
Day 5 After some down time in the morning, we will have town time mid-day for shopping and cultural exploration before leaving Bariloche and taking a 2 hour transport to the town of El Bolson. In El Bolson we will visit the local feria (artisan fair) for handmade crafts and local foods before a drive into the mountains to La Confluencia lodge. During our next four days at La Confluencia, each participant will be offered a Shiatsu massage, a Reiki session, and will have opportunity for nightly use of the wood fired hot tub and sauna.
Day 6 After morning yoga on the deck, we will spend the day harvesting in the organic garden and cooking, not only learning local culinary practices but also exploring the ways in which we serve our community with our own gifts and abilities.
Day 7 A final yoga class on the deck and then we will hike to Cajon de Azul, a crystal blue river channeled through a box canyon in the mountains, before our closing celebratory feast, a traditional Argentinian asado.
Day 8 Morning transport back to the airport in Bariloche, arriving by 11am, in time for a final shared meal before departing for the airport at 1pm.