When you see a massive statue of a fish as you leave a town in amongt the oil reservoirs and gas tanks, you must stop to wonder……this is the story of the Rio Grande.
This massive, low gradient, fast flowing river is renowned for being the world’s best sea trout fishing spot. The entire river frontage is guarded by armed rangers belonging to only 6 adjacent estancias effectively excluding the public. There are 2 spots the public can get access to – a nasty, noisy spot under the bridge leaving town and ‘somewhere’ else, for a daily licence of about 100US$!
In exchange for forgoing a night camping in 5degrees in Tierro del Fuego park ( at the end of the world), I got to go fishing……all about compromise :). The only way to access the Grande is through one of the 6 estancias – after 2 days of correspondence we were able to secure a 24hr visit to the river.
Lap of luxury has nothing on this setup. We stayed at a lodge called Villa Maria on Estancia Jose Menendez. Only 6 rods are catered for at any one time – they happened to have a gap! And obseessed fly fisherman come for a week at a time.
Everything is laid on for you – welcome drinks, beautifully done-up farm house to stay in, separate dining room where everyone re-tells the day’s stories.Cath was included in the deal as an observer. I had a guide to myself; full gear including waders and 2 13foot rods at my disposal!
We spent the entire day on the river bar a lunch at the river lodge – 4 course spread with a spectacular view of the river followed by a short siesta. Followed by an evening fish untill 9pm!
My luck held in the early part of the day with the largest fish being 18pounds!
We had an absolutely fantastic time and fishing trip – one definitely to put on the return card!