Random Thoughts

Daydreaming of Patagonia

Patagonia scene from 180 South
Above image by 180° South.

I often dream of traveling to Patagonia, a luscious wilderness region that straddles Chile and Argentina. I even dream of living there one day, or at least having a part-time retreat that I can visit a couple times a year. At one point I was so obsessed that I bookmarked a California couple’s blog and lived vicariously through them. They just picked up and moved with their dog to a lakefront cabin in Patagonia, working from home, running their own farm, and skiing the Andean peaks. Ahhh, what a life.

When the documentary “180° South: Conquerors of the Useless” came out, I Netflixed it and sat glued to my TV, drooling over the awe-inspiring scenery in all its HD glory of one adventurer’s journey from Mexico to Patagonia. (Although my tendency for seasickness would nix the sailboat idea; I would do the road trip of a lifetime from California.)

The documentary retraces the legendary 1970 journey of surfer and climber Yvon Chouinard (founder of Patagonia) and fellow dirtbag Doug Tompkins (founder of The North Face), who took off in a VW beater in search of glassy surf and pristine lines all along the South American coast.

There was a quote from the movie that really resonated with me: “The best journeys answer questions you didn’t even think to ask.”

So, so true. That moment of magic happens when you release the reins and let life take you places.

Linda Ly About Author

I'm a plant lover, passionate road-tripper, and cookbook author whose expert advice and bestselling books have been featured in TIME, Outside, HGTV, and Food & Wine. The No-Waste Vegetable Cookbook is my latest book. Garden Betty is where I write about modern homesteading, farm-to-table cooking, and outdoor adventuring — all that encompass a life well-lived outdoors. After all, the secret to a good life is... Read more »


  • Avatar
    vince chan
    August 7, 2012 at 2:38 am

    that was a cool documentary…i know if i did something similar, i’ll be the among the most contented person in the world for the moment, but yet I don’t know why it is so hard for me to make it happen……..

    • Linda Ly
      Linda Ly
      August 17, 2012 at 2:49 pm

      A lot of people are too wrapped up in their adult lives of jobs, bills, family, etc. If only we could be 18 again, when none of that mattered as much, but still know what we know now!


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