Getting to Northern Patagonia is not for the weak traveler. A 12-hour plane ride will get you to Santiago, Chile (from Salt Lake City, Utah) where the FWT athletes and staff cultured themselves by walking the city streets, dining on the local cuisine, taking in the Chilean lifestyles and enjoying true South American cervesas. But Santiago is only the halfway point in the travel adventure to Patagonia. Add a 12-hour bus ride and a two-hour van ride through dense rainforest vegetation in Puyehue National Park, and we finally reached our mountain paradise at the base of the Casablanca Volcano. The skiing terrain is only accessed by a few T-bar style chairlifts and one double chairlift (which was not in operation). Antillanca is beyond unique when it comes to ski standards.
For five days, FWT athletes from all over the world, dressed in bright multi-colored freeskiing attire, loaded the T-bar along side the camouflage covered Chilean military and Junior Chilean race teams, but the common bond of skiing easily bridged the culture and language barriers. The athletes planned to explore terrain in and out of the resort boundary, documenting full days of action from first chair to the incomparable Andes sunsets. Side-country and backcountry lines were accessible in all directions from Antillanca’s summit, terrain not usually explored by the locals. A quick hour-plus tour puts you on the summit of a volcano, with surreal panoramic views of volcanic peaks. The next step is to pick a line into a snow-covered crater or onto picturesque exposed terrain that would challenge the best athlete out there. By far, one of the most unique freeskiing locations I have ever visited and cannot wait to return to.