We had the good fortune of connecting with David Long and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi David, how did you come up with the idea for your business?
AWARE, ALIVE, AWAKE David’s love for Chile started back in the previous century when he came as a Rotary International exchange student. He fell in love with the family centric culture, their joyful people and delightful food – not to mention the incredible wines!
A piece of his heart stayed in Chile always pulling him back. In 2007 he returned to Chile to connect with his Chilean family who had relocated to the Aysen region in Patagonia. It was on this trip that he knew it was a special place for him and one that he wanted to share. What he found in Patagonia was the perfect playground to his outdoorsman spirit: The vastness, the rivers, the fishing!
We aim to create not a place to simply visit but a place to experience, in the best of comforts, surrounded by untouched beauty and connecting people to all that Patagonia has to offer. Our love for the region and the desire to protect this place and make experiencing its culture accessible to all who seek it is what drove us to create Eko Patagonia.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
David hopes to preserve the Patagonia experience for generations to come. He is passionate about making the outdoors available to all who seek it, while creating opportunities for all to reflect on how they can make a difference in their lives.
The opportunities for personal reflection, disconnection and reconnection abound in Patagonia and David invites you to join him on the rivers of Patagonia and around the world.
Eko Patagonia is a place to experience the culture of the area while participating in incredible outdoors experiences. We are more than just a destination fishing lodge in a world class fishery. We have four luxurious and independent lakeside cabins where you can experience solitude after a day of adventuring. No neighborly noises waking you up here.
We founded Eko because of the genuine echoes you can experience in solitude and serenity visiting Chile Patagonia. We want to protect and preserve this rugged land for generations to come.
That’s why, we are making every effort minimize our impact on the environment, starting with recycling used shipping containers as the foundation of our buildings.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
This is a very rural setting so most of the spots are outside of the city, the town square itself can’t be missed, otherwise head out of town: WORLD CLASS FLYFISHING – Simpson River, Coyhaique River and many more.
KAYAK – Enjoy kayaking hundreds of lakes, rivers and the ocean fjords.
RAFT – There are many rivers in the area where you can enjoy some thrilling whitewater experiences.
CLIMB – within 2 hours drive-radius you have over 4 established sites: Cerro Mckay, Ensenada Valle Simpson, Muralla China.
BIKE – Mountain or road biking rewards you with incredible views and scenery
HIKE – Known for it’s breathtaking views, vast scenic panorama and varied landscape, Patagonia is a dream to the occasional day hiker to multiday trekker. We have 3 National Reserves within 2 hours driving distance: Cerro Castillo, Rio Simpson Reserve, Dos Lagos Monument, Coyhaique Reserve and others.
TREK – From Capillas de Marmol to the hanging Glacier of Quelat to the glaciers in Laguna San Rafael, Patagonia is a playground for finding adventures.
BIRDING – Chile has 493 species of birds, including 12 endemic to the country and 35 species that are globally threatened. Near our lodge you can look for the elusive Bubo Magellanicus – the biggest Owl of Chile; or his smallest cousing the Glaucidium Nana. The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Maria Fernandez is my partner and has been extremely inspirational and supportive. She’s always had a passion for traveling and sharing the authentic culture of the places she visits. When started dating Patagonia became a common topic in our “dreaming” conversations, and soon she said: “well, what’s stopping you from doing something wonderful here?” I asked her to join me on a trip to Patagonia because I wanted to share the culture and beauty and vastness of the area. I began to plan for all the fun places to take her and she said: “let’s make this a business trip, we can always visit as tourists later” and that was the push we needed. When we arrived in Patagonia she was overtaken by its vastness, untouched wilderness, and raw breathtaking beauty. So we decided to take a “sabbatical” year to invest time in this dream, get it off the ground, and staff it so it can run on the side while we look for our next thing. Best decision of my life!