Trip Report Patagonia, Chile

MDK

Active Member
#1
Just got back from a month in the Patagonia region(Aysen) of Chile. Normally in the winter I try and go to Mexico or Belize to do some fishing, but this year a friend talked me into going to Chile. It wasn't too hard as I had lived there 40 some years ago as a peace corps volunteer. So, I raided my IRA and went. I spent the first week at a lodge with my friends and the traveled around on my own for three weeks.

The lodge was nice but for a DIY person I feel they are overpriced. During this week we fished lakes and rivers in the Coyhique area. Fishing was for brown and rainbow trout. The rivers in this area now have Chinook salmon but it was early for them. Fishing was mostly with dry lines and big beetles for flies.

After this week, I rented a car and traveled about 200 miles north and south exploring on my own. Car rental is expensive mostly due to the need to buy local insurance and gas(little over $5.00/gal). Most roads away from Coyhique are gravel, so you need a car with good suspension and tires. The fishing varied from poor to fair to good. Chilean streams belong to the public but access can be a problem. The most obvious access was from bridges but this is also the most heavily fished areas. Almost everywhere is fenced for cattle or sheep. I did see some no trespassing signs but where there were gates without locks, I entered without any problems. The further away I got from civilization or obvious access points the better the fishing. The grasshopper was the most effective fly during this part of my trip. Trout ranged in size from 12-18".

I was a little surprised how many people I saw fishing, both Chilanos and foreigners. There are plenty of guides in the area. When I was there 40 years ago, few Chilanos sport fished and I only met two foreigners fishing in 2 years. I think the lakes maybe better fishing than the streams but you need a boat. Many of the streams are large rivers with snow or glacial melt and the tribs are high gradient with lots of boulders and little habitat. They also don't keep the cattle away from the streams.

I had no problems during the trip. The biggest nuisance was the wind - blows constantly. The horse flies were also a pain. The scenery was great and the beer and wine were good. It's a long way to go to fish but if you are in good health, can afford it and are adventurous it maybe for you. DSCN0800_1.JPG DSCN0807_1.JPG DSCN0815_1.JPG DSCN0819_1.JPG DSCN0822_1.JPG DSCN0840_1.JPG DSCN0841_1.JPG DSCN0845_1.JPG DSCN0853_1.JPG DSCN0866_1.JPG DSCN0876_1.JPG DSCN0913_1.JPG DSCN0933_1.JPG DSCN0940_1.JPG DSCN0942_1.JPG DSCN0945_1.JPG DSCN0953_1.JPG DSCN0968_1.JPG DSCN0969_1.JPG
 
#6
I don't know which lodge you stayed at but I have two fishing buddies who are currently staying in that area of Chile at the Cinco Rios Lodge. The lodge caught fire while they were out fishing. Their room along with all of their belongings, except the equipment they were fishing with, burned up. That's how a bucket list trip gets ruined.
 

MDK

Active Member
#7
I don't know which lodge you stayed at but I have two fishing buddies who are currently staying in that area of Chile at the Cinco Rios Lodge. The lodge caught fire while they were out fishing. Their room along with all of their belongings, except the equipment they were fishing with, burned up. That's how a bucket list trip gets ruined.
I don't know which lodge you stayed at but I have two fishing buddies who are currently staying in that area of Chile at the Cinco Rios Lodge. The lodge caught fire while they were out fishing. Their room along with all of their belongings, except the equipment they were fishing with, burned up. That's how a bucket list trip gets ruined.
The lodge I stayed at was Magic Waters. I met a couple people from Michigan that stayed at Cinco Rivers.
 
#10
Nice photos. Thanks for the report. It looks like you found some nice smaller streams. I have never fished Chile, but have fished Argentina several times. From what I gather, the DIY fishing is easier in Argentina, although becoming more difficult by the year as the lodges secure exclusive rights to river access on many estancias along popular rivers.
 

MDK

Active Member
#11
Richard: I ran into same thing near Coyhaique, in particular the Emperador William river, where do not enter signs were in English not Spanish. Lodges and /or guides had paid landowners for exclusive access rites.
 
#13
Thought I would share more beautiful scenery and fish from Coyhaique. Went in February 2016 with good friends. We booked the Coyhaique River Lodge. 1st class all the way.



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#14
Nice report and pictures! I think many people don't realize how easily you can do a trip on your own down there. A friend and I fished Chile and Argentina last year, fished 19 spots, caught fish in 17 of them, three weeks for $1600 each. Compare to the lodges with guides at about $1000 a day. Our Spanish is limited, we camped a lot, but still rented some cabins and had some nice steak dinners in town.
 

SERE Nate

Active Member
#15
Nice report and pictures! I think many people don't realize how easily you can do a trip on your own down there. A friend and I fished Chile and Argentina last year, fished 19 spots, caught fish in 17 of them, three weeks for $1600 each. Compare to the lodges with guides at about $1000 a day. Our Spanish is limited, we camped a lot, but still rented some cabins and had some nice steak dinners in town.
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