Unlucky for Some …

14th September 2013 by Helen

… but for us Friday 13th held an emotional moment when yesterday we opened the hostal gates and Paul backed Landy out on to the road for a test run around the block, almost four months to the day since his axle broke in Torres del Paine.  To help with the jacking up and cleaning out we’d effectively unloaded most of our ‘home’ into Dos Lagunas hostal so we then ended the day yesterday by loading most of it back in to Landy again.  That left just a few final overnight bits to load this morning and we were off, heading to Punta Arenas.

Overlanders' Postcard!

Overlanders’ Postcard!

Of course nothing is ever simple or finished and our time in Punta Arenas started off by focussing on getting two new tyres and at least two shock absorbers.  Although the shops don’t open until 10.00 am they close again for ‘siesta’ from 12.30 to 3.00 pm, so, having found our way around the car parts section of town we found ourselves looking for some lunch while we waited for the stores to open again.

The upshot of the day’s shopping was two new shock absorbers made to fit a Nissan, now we have to find a way to remove the fitting from one end and create the correct fitting so it will fit a Land Rover, however this was the closest we could get.  At 5.57 pm we opted for an unknown, to us, make of Hanook tyres bought from Reconsur, the price including fitting by the local Gomeria.  We were assured we could have them fitted straight away so we made the short drive only to find he’d already closed for the weekend!  Luckily we found another gomeria and got the job done: two good tyres, two old ones with lots of tread but a handful of punctures between them, plus to similarly repaired for spares and the worst ones left behind.

By now, however, we’d discovered a new problem (what else?)!  We’d been pleased that both our batteries had taken a full charge before putting them back in to Landy, but it had become obvious during the drive from Puerto Natales that the main battery was losing charge as we were driving, being drained by the legal necessity to drive with headlights on.  However, being electrics the possibilities of the cause of the problem could have several sources yet to be identified.

We hit lucky with a brilliant hostal right in the area where we’d been buying tyres and shock absorbers (Hostal Paradiso) – off road parking, amenable hosts, WiFi that worked, and breakfast included.  Paul put the battery on to charge overnight: we’ll see what tomorrow brings.

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