Gulf of Penas

The Gulf of Penas (English: Gulf of distress) is a body of water located south of the Taitao Peninsula, Chile. It is open to the westerly storms of the Pacific Ocean, but it affords entrance to several natural harbours. Among these are the gulfs of Tres Montes and San Esteban, and Tarn Bay at the entrance to Messier Channel.[1] To the south of the gulf lies Guayaneco Archipelago and to the east lies San Javier Island and then the mainland.

Spanish explorers and Jesuits that sailed south from Chiloé Archipelago in the 17th and 18th centuries regularly avoided rounding the Taitao Peninsula by entering the gulf after a brief land crossing at the isthmus of Ofqui.[2]

In 1741 HMS Wager, attempting to tack from a lee shore in a storm was wrecked along the coast of what would become known as Wager Island in the SE of the Gulf.[3][2]


  1. ^   One or more of the preceding sentences incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainMoyna, Edward Gerald James (1911). "Chile". In Chisholm, Hugh (ed.). Encyclopædia Britannica. 6 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 143.
  2. ^ a b Vásquez Caballero, Ricardo Felipe. "Aau, el secreto de los chono" (PDF) (in Spanish). Retrieved January 24, 2019. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  3. ^ Sepúlveda Ortíz, Jorge. "Exploraciones efectuadas en la región de Trapananda antes del siglo XIX" (PDF). Boletín de la Academia de Historia Naval y Marítima de Chile (in Spanish): 95–110. Retrieved January 25, 2019.
  • Instituto Geográfico Militar (1970). Atlas de la República de Chile. Santiago: Instituto Geográfico Militar. Second edition.

Coordinates: 47°22′S 74°50′W / 47.367°S 74.833°W / -47.367; -74.833