Puerto Montt, Chile
Statsraad Lehmkuhl visits Puerto Montt April 22-24 2022
Puerto Montt is located in the south of Chile, west of the Andes in the part of the country called Patagonia. The city has around 250,000 inhabitants.
The city was founded by German immigrants in 1853. It is well protected in the bay of Seno de Reloncaví, and not far from the large lake Lago Llanquihue. The area was covered with dense forest when the Germans arrived. After three years, the trees had been cut down and bushes and shrubs burned, and a town started to grow.
In 1912 a railroad connecting the town with Santiago was built , and by 1950 the population had increased to 27,500.
The Andes Mountains run along the entire western part of South America. The continental plate below the eastern part of the Pacific Ocean slides into South America here, and is lifting the mountains up. This ongoing collision is the reason for all the volcanic activity along the Andes.
The 2015 meter high volcano Calbuco is located only 20 kilometers east of the city, clearly visible. It has had several major outbreaks, the most recent in 1961, 1972 and 2015.
In 1960, large parts of Puerto Montt were destroyed by a powerful earthquake. The city was rebuilt and is now the most important administrative center in Patagonia.
The city is also a center for Chilean salmon farming, and the Norwegian seafood producer Cermaq has its Chilean headquarters here.
The mountains east of the city lift the air that blows in from the west up. This cools the air, and it can no longer hold on to all its moisture, so clouds and precipitation form. Just like in Western Norway. So, Puerto Montt is a rainy city. Normal annual precipitation is 1613 millimeters, more than twice as much as Oslo receives, but 30% less than what Bergen gets.
Normal maximum temperature in April: 15 ℃
Normal precipitation in April: 148,3 mm