If you have posted a report here before, these words may sound familiar to you:
"Important: Your Flight-Report's cover photo must be representative of the flight experience (i.e. aircraft, cabin, seats, meals, etc.) Photos not related to the flight experience will not be accepted."
So, how on earth can I explain that a cow is part of my flight experience before the admins object to my cover photo??
You're kindly invited to read about the privileged cows that make any avgeek go green with envy!
Osorno is some 110km south of my hometown, Valdivia. Both cities have a lot in common: Both are about the same size (around 150.000 inhabitants) Both share the same cold, rainy weather most of the year. And both have a rich German heritage due to the colonization of the 1800s.
But for some reason, instead of being two good sister cities, there's a sort of rivalry between them. I have the impression that Osorno has always been the "ugly sister". While Valdivia is a popular tourist destination, with vibrant nightlife and lots of youth thanks to its various universities, life in Osorno revolves around cattle farming and the dairy industry.
I'm boarding today's flight at Osorno airport - Cañal Bajo - just for fun. I decided I'd arrive in the city a bit early in order to look around. The river Damas flows through the city.
The park on its border is a refuge of peace and quiet…
…though it looks a little gloomy this time of year.
This bridge connects it…
…with the center of the city.
This bull at Osorno's main square is a testimony to the importance of cattle farming for the local economy.
Some views of the Plaza de Armas…
…and its fountain.
The European influence is evident in the local architecture…
…and in the names.
Most areas look like any other ugly Chilean city, though.
Huge bovines in front of an important bank.
As in many other places, shopping centers are popping up everywhere, even in residential areas.
Rain is a constant here.
The Mercado Municipal is where the local produce is sold.
…you can buy some wooden artifacts…
…dress up like an elegant huaso (the Chilean version of a cowboy), wearing a poncho, a short jacket and a chupalla (hat)…
…or visit one of the many…
…restaurants, which offer a wide variety of local delicacies, from fish to… beef, obviously.
Unfortunately, I have to keep moving.
He sure feels at home here! I thought he was dead!
A mooo-ving experience
Unsure how to reach the airport, I take a micro (city bus) that takes me….
…to the east across the highway.
The driver explains that he must drop me some kilometers before the airport, and that any bus going to the next town will drop me outside the airport. Those buses are very frequent. I shouldn't wait more than 15 minutes.
But I get anxious and prefer to call an Uber instead.
I should have waited a little longer. Only two minutes after I call the Uber, a bus comes.
Look! ZOS is right behind this field!
From the road…
…it’s just a few meters…
…to the terminal.
Parking: 600 CLP (0.96 USD) the first half an hour. 4000 CLP (6.5 USD) for a whole day.
Welcome to Cañal Bajo airport (ZOS)
It’s certainly a very small airport.
Your living room is probably bigger than this hall!
Only two shops: A small gift shop and somewhere to buy some cookies or a soda. (They had run out of coffee when I went!)
The gift shop.
Some tourist information on the wall…
…including a map of the province…
…and a colorful depiction of the main attractions of the area, like the Osorno volcano and lake Llanquihue (Yang – KEE – way)
Women up. Men down. This airport is a bastion of feminism!!
Baby changing table in the men's restroom. The message is loud and clear!
Back in the hall, even though no announcement has been given over the PA, passengers are commenting that there is a delay.
In fact, according to flightradar24.com, at 14:42 CC-AHE is just leaving Santiago! It won't make it to Osorno until more than an hour later. We won't be leaving at 15:20, that's for sure. :(
But… isn't it great? Plenty of time for a tour of the premises. Let's go outside.
ZOS is surrounded by fields. The access from the road is over there, behind those white bales of grass.
This is the entrance from the airport to the field where the bales are. But this is private property, so let’s go straight…
…to the main road, and let’s start our tour here.
This is the view on the left. Cows! Grazing or dozing happily…
…abandoned to the most peaceful bovine peristalsis.
Who wouldn’t like to live that life? All the food you can eat. All the plane spotting you might want. Well, too bad that flights arrive only three or four times a week at ZOS. Nothing is perfect.
On the other side of the road, more lovely, green fields.
Queltehues (aka treiles or tero teros) lay their eggs on the ground. If you get too close to their eggs or chickens, they make a lot of noise and try to shoo you away by flying menacingly above your head.
An acequia (irrigation canal). One like this flowed across my grandparents’ backyard when I was a child. I used to put paper boats in the stream and follow them until they disappeared into the neighbor’s property. <sob>
I close my eyes and enjoy the crisp air and the sounds of the countryside for a moment. Do you like the sound of water?
From there, it’s just a few steps…
…back to the terminal. Over there, the main hall. The waiting room is on the right, on the second floor.
Let’s walk towards the left.
The terminal building…
…doesn’t seem to follow the modern lines…
…of other Chilean airports I have visited so far.
ZOS was built in the 60s.
This is the view through the wire mesh fence on the left side of the terminal building.
Zona de seguridad 2, reads that yellow sign.
And what seems to be a little weather station.
Let’s go to the other side now. Today the wind is perfect for a patriotic photograph. XDD
On the right side, Sky’s baggage loader is already waiting for our flight.
My cellphone fits perfectly between the bars of the fence for this shot of the back of the building.
Let's go back inside. Lunch in Chile is the most abundant meal of the day, but I didn't have lunch today, fearing I might be late for my flight. Now I'm really hungry.
No sandwiches or coffee at the shop. Will have to make do with some chocolate milk and cookies. :'''(
When the time for boarding eventually comes, we line up along the glass panels that separate the security checkpoint from the rest of the hall.
Some proactive mind printed a little sign to show the way.
After security check come some steps leading to the second floor, on the right wing of the building.
I find a well-lit, spotter friendly boarding room…
…equipped with a TV monitor, and connected to the only jetway, much appreciated in this rainy weather. On one side it has a view on the apron…
…and on the other side, a view to the parking lot and…
…the cows. Can anyone say that my cover photo is not part of the flight experience, now?
I move to the far end of the room…
…from where I have a comprehensive view of the place.
The restrooms are in this corner. That one is for the disabled…
…and for the rest of us.
I find the message a bit confusing.
The airside restrooms…
…look nice and tidy.
Back in my corner I discover a little area where these boarding group markers are kept, next to… a cooker hood?!
And a sink?! Hm… something tells me that the local Club Aéreo has the perfect spot for some superb asados (BBQ’s) in this boarding room!
Still some 20 minutes before our plane arrives. Some athletes are trying to set new records on TV…
…while I enjoy the view of the apron.
The baggage loader I saw earlier.
The controls look pretty simple.
At long last, the ground staff take their positions.
That lady in the jetway seems to be impatient, too. BTW, moments before boarding she calls out “Who’s got an electronic boarding pass?” I’m the only one! All the other passengers have the paper version.
They look at the distance and wait…
…and then he suddenly jumps into action.
There comes CC-AHE!
Sky Airline is promoting a new alliance with TransVip…
…a transfer company.
I have used them a couple of times…
…but I think it doesn't make any difference if you access their website directly…
…or via Sky Airline's website.
I love the way it parks there, not parallel nor perpendicular to the terminal, but in an angle.
Looks like almost everybody is loving the view. I wish my students paid the same attention when I speak!
Chocks in place.
No time to waste! There come the stairs.
Now, prepare for the traditional Osorno greeting: - Knock knock. - Who’s there?
- The interrupting cow. - Interrupting cow wh- - Moooooo!
Don't say you didn't roll your eyes at least! XDDD
While the passengers disembark…
…the road is marked for the passengers disembarking through the rear door…
…and our luggage is loaded.
Only now the rear door opens…
…and everyone runs free.
The last passengers are helped down the stairs…
…and it’s our turn to board.
As you see, I’m not in a hurry at all.
I take my time watching others board.
Oh, I almost forgot. No USB chargers at ZOS, but these are all over the boarding room.
My turn comes.
We are sent down the ramp…
…to the apron.
These “panoramic” jet bridges are fantastic.
A smiling Sky FA! I never thought I’d live to see this.
This will take some time.
Some little artist used the back of the seat as a canvas. Very creative.
The usual adds…
Contents of the seatback pocket.
I find Sky’s inflight magazine exceptionally good. They go the extra mile and include some interesting interviews. A Chilean actress is on the cover this month.
Ew! This marks a new low. Not for Sky, but for dirty passengers!
We’re all ready to go.
These guys finish their work…
…and here we go.
The Club Aéreo. I bet they are the ones who make the best use of the kitchen facilities in the boarding room
…to the end of the runway…
…and in no time…
…we are climbing above the cows.
River Llutún (never heard of its existence before I wrote this report!) is the last thing I can see…
…before we reach the clouds.
The BOB service starts as soon as we level off.
The clouds block the view…
…until we reach Rancagua…
…some 100km south of Santiago.
These are not the Andes…
…but some high hills near the coast.
This year there's more snow than usual…
…but that won't be enough to save Aculeo lagoon from shrinking until it dries up completely.
Its waters are intensively used by farmers.
Those are the Andes in the distance…
…and with an extensive collection of volcanoes.
The valley in central Chile is characterized by these "island hills" sprinkled all over the flat area.
That green triangle on the right used to be Los Cerrillos airport, Santiago's main airport until 1967. In a controversial decision, it was closed in 2006 and turned into a park and a housing project.
Departamental Av. going to the east.
Downtown. See the bend of river Mapocho? The main avenue of Santiago, the Alameda, starts there. In fact, they say that the avenue was buil on what used to be an arm of the river. You can see the Alameda bottom right. Also, there a high building at that bend.
It's the Telefónica building. It was the tallest in Santiago when it was built. See the little obelisk at its foot? That obelisk is in the center of a large roundabout officially called Plaza Baquedano, but popularly known as Plaza Italia. That's where large demonstrations (or celebrations) usually take place.
Now, flying above the northern suburbs…
…we bank to the left…
…in a U-turn…
…and now we are flying…
…southwards, as the sun sets.
Touchdown at SCL.
Unlike other occasions…
…this time we don't stop at the domestic flights wing.
I wonder where we are going.
On the way I see this Mineral Airlines 737, which serves (obviously) the mining industry. But more exciting is the brand new A320 behind, with the beautiful loica on its vertical stabilizer. I didn't know it at the time, but I would soon fly on it! Report coming soon!
Eventually, we make our way…
…to gate 20, and park next to Aerolíneas Argentinas.
Aahhh… nice memories.
I linger on my seat…
…watching the action outside…
…until almost everyone has deplaned.
My well-alingned seat.
Some information about this flight.
Boo, the city. To think that only 60 minutes ago…
…I was surrounded by cows, birds, grass and trees. :(
I enjoyed staying on the plane. The problem is that now I don't know where everybodu has gone! I find locked doors!
I wonder if I should go this way? I walk and walk…
…until I come to baggage claim. This is the first time I emerge on this side!
The night is falling over the cranes at the construction site for the new international terminal.
In spite of the noise and the traffic of the city…
…I think I know what I will dream of tonight!
Mooo-chas gracias for reading! ^_^
Osorno - ZOS
Santiago - SCL
ZOS Pretty little airport in unmatched surroundings. A great experience for nature-loving avgeeks! Excellent connectivity. Close to the city. Hopefully services will improve as flights become more frequent. So, continuing the everlasting tug-of-war between the two cities, who has the best airport? Valdivia or Osorno? Hm... my opinion might be biased. I'll keep my vote secret for now. :D
SCL I'm sending all my love to you, SCL.
Sky Airline Nice experience. Deserves tidier customers! And as I learned later, their BOB prices are quite reasonable!
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