Day 1

Day 1
After a relaxing day at the San Martin de los Andes, we took about 40km cab ride to the Junin de los Andes which is a small  city of 14, 000 people. It is located to the south of Neuquen Province with slow pace living and trout-filled water. The slow pace lifestyle in Argentina in general took some time for us to get used to as typical lunch starts at 2pm and 9pm for dinner.

Common transportation for the locals

Almost every house had handcrafted family signs in front
of their house

 Every street signs contain picture of trout

There are only a handful of restaurants in the town and luckily for us we only had to rely on them for dinners as the lunch will be provided by the Flotadas Chimehuin Outfit which has a long history of guiding experience at the Juinin as two generations of the family are working together to provide excellent fishing experience one angler can gain. We were able to find them through Travis from the Yellowstone who guided us during our trip to the park.
Travis with his signature smile

Travis who is an amazing person not only as a guide but as one of the most pleasant individual I've had a pleasure to fish with, married a beautiful lady who's family owns the Flotadas Chimehuin which naturally makes her very capable guide as well.  Travis and his wife Giselle works in the west yellowstone in the summer and works in the Juinin in the winter season.  The life style we can only dream about...   The weather wasn't what we have expected. The wind was a little shy of small hurricane and the temperature was high 40 degrees with occasional rains, which we found out later on that it is very unusual to have such condition at this time of the season. I guess we brought with us the cold front we've been having at the east coast...   After purchasing fishing license, we were off to the Collon Cura which is a large and wide river.  The course of the river runs through a series of valleys which is home to many browns, rainbows and percas which is a native species that are similar to smallmouth bass.  The river banks were lined with willows, rosehip bushes and volcanic rocks.

Since Travis couldn't get the guide license for this season, we were introduced to Giselle's brother Gabriel who's been guiding the Junin waters since he was 14 years of age.

Gabriel was a humorous and pleasant person and  a determined guide who will go extra length to get you with the fish. But off the bet, the we realize that the fishing will be very  difficult as there was no way we can make any decent  casts against constant gust of wind.

The willow trees that covers the river bank were dancing violently as we drift down the river. Gabriel worked the boat in ways so that the wind is behind us so that our casts will be easier. Obviously the skills and strength required to manipulate this boat on this kind of weather is something you can only obtain through years of experience

Gabriel informed us that the previous rains made the water level higher and flows faster than usual and how the fishing will be somewhat effected.  It wasn't easy but with Gabriel's coaching, we are able to figure out how to cast in strong wind condition.  I was amazed at how Patty picked up the skill and start catching trout.
In the beginning of the trip, we were catching mostly small rainbows.  Although small, they were the most feistiest rainbows I've ever seen.  I was also surprised how many fish there were in these water. 
For lunch, we were able to find an island that were well protected from the wind and unwind.
For the second half of the trip, we were greeted by bigger trout.  Because of the strong wind, grass hoppers were lining up the river edge and the bigger trout were taking advantage of the situation.

We switch our strategies to streamers from the dry flies as the wind intensified.  The added weight made the casting a lot easier and the result was a lot more satisfying as some of the browns responded well to the streamers we were flinging.   

It was an intense day of fishing but what a proper reintroduction to the Patagonia!.  Strong wind, unpredictable weather and a tons of fish.  We retired for the day around 8pm and the sun was still over our head as we were wondering what the rest of the trip will bring...


  1. Charles - awesome, looks like you guys are having a great time down there.

  2. super beautiful mate. nothing like a little drift time. best way to fish.

    1. Thanks Lee! It was more of sailing but great nonetheless.