Maybe the Best Trout Fishing Adventure Anywhere
By Larry Dunbar
The flight from Miami is 10 hours, from Dallas it’s a bit more and from Los Angeles even more. Claiming your bags and fishing gear, clearing customs and catching a radio taxi from the international airport to the regional airport takes a couple more hours. The flight west takes 2 hours and the car ride from the airport to Alumine adds about 4 hours. The road is mostly paved.
From Miami, you’ve now got in 18 hours travel plus whatever wait time. It’s pretty much a two day trip before the fishing starts, particularly if you started north of the Mason-Dixon line. But the fishing adventures found in Alumine make the trip well worthwhile.
The area near Alumine in North Central Patagonia is really a trout fishing paradise. Options for your fishing adventure include a small meandering river, big free stone rivers and several lakes. We fished a small river on a private estancia for a few days. The guide rated the stream as a 8-10 fish per day stream. The rainbows were fat and healthy, with many in the 12-14 inch range. We were sight fishing and using mostly dry flies. Sometimes we added a small dropper. We never saw any brook trout but the guide Nico had a pic on his phone of a huge brookie, the biggest one I’ve ever seen.
The rain shadow of the Andes keeps the area dry and the weather mostly sunny. It’s important to wear protective clothing and lots of sun lotion to block that South American sun (Hook and Tackle is a good source for sun protection clothing). That sun made those fat trout glisten in the light when they rose for a bug.
A Private Fishing Adventure
We never saw another person fishing on the estancia. We did see a Gaucho with his horses and dogs. He stopped by to ask us if we had seen his sheep.
We also fished the big freestone rivers, again with dry flies. Casting on the wider river required a little more distance and was a little harder. The brush on the banks made casting tricky. Wading on the freestone bottom is like walking on slick wet basketballs. The extra challenges were rewarded with lots of bigger rainbows in the big pools. They were easy to spot in the clear water and were eager to come up for a top water presentation.
The fishing in this area is well managed, meaning the guides don’t work a section of river two days in a row, letting it settle down between trips. Of course like all of Argentine Patagonia, the fishing is catch and release.
We did not fish the lakes or use the drift boat, unfortunately. For me a fishing adventure is all about wading. Have you been to Patagonia? Are you planning a fishing adventure? Want some tips? Leave a message.