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Chile Exploratory 02-16-2000

By the time January and February roll around, the soul-stirring thought of a big brown trout rising gently to a dry fly is all but a faded memory of summer. Unfortunately, in most of North America, winter trout fishing is very difficult making it only for the truly hardcore. However, because of the reversal of seasons between the northern and southern hemispheres, Chile offers some superb trout fishing in the dead of our winter.

Two years ago, we hosted a group of intrepid anglers to the Coyhaique region of Chile and found some excellent fishing for browns using huge terrestrial patterns. Thrilled by our experience in Patagonia, we have explored numerous opportunities hoping to find just that right situation. We wanted to once again experience the amenities of a fine lodge but also wanted something remote and off the beaten path. Well, we found it and we are pleased to announce that we have a new, unique Chilean itinerary to satisfy your winter dreams. Our plan is to split the week between one of Chile's finest lodges and a deluxe camp far to the south of the nearest fishing lodge in terra incognita.

The objective is to fish unpressured areas in pursuit of the finest wild brown trout fishing in all of South America. The agenda was assembled by Pablo Negri and Rodrigo Sandoval. These two well-traveled and well-respected Chilean outfitters have a lifetime of experience organizing exciting fly fishing adventures in Chile. Pablo and/or Rodrigo will personally lead each trip putting the emphasis on quality and service, as well as contributing a considerable amount of technical angling expertise to the venture.

The first half of the adventure starts in Balmaceda where you are met at the airport. From there you begin your trip south with a six-hour ride (or optional flight) through the majestic Andes to a beautiful, private lodge built on the banks of the Rio Baker. Guests spend the first half of the trip fishing from this beautiful central location while enjoying gourmet meals and fine Chilean wines. The trout fishing in this remote area's unpressured rivers, lakes and lagoons is simply spectacular. Here the water conditions create an excellent aquatic insect habitat, providing many opportunities for dry fly action. Hatches are abundant and prolific! Chances of hooking a double-digit fish here are not small.

After a few days of lodge life, the second half of the adventure begins at the southern end of the beautiful and unexplored Austral Road. The road ends at the village of Villa O'Higgins. Here you will find many unfished and untouched lagoons, rivers and streams holding large populations of gold and maroon-colored browns. Many experienced anglers believe these may be the most beautiful brown trout in the world.

While at Villa O'Higgins, you will be "camping" on nearby private ranches owned by friends of your outfitters. This trip was not originally organized for commercial purposes. Rather, it was put together for a personal friend of Pablo's who wanted to see the very best brown trout fishing in Chile. This particular friend is not a big fan of camping and therefore, "deluxe camping" was promised and delivered. The best of equipment (tents, food, cooking utensils, sleeping arrangements) is used. A combination cook/campmaster joins us so that the maximum amount of time possible can be spent fishing and not setting up camp. By fishing in this manner, we stay close to these prime untouched fisheries. We eliminate the long drive back to a lodge and again, maximize our precious angling time. Fish the evening won't be stuffed in some vehicle commuting when you should be fishing. You only worry about the fishing, knowing a comfortable camp and a delicious meal awaits you at the end of a long and productive day. If you are interested in giving Chile a try this winter, we can easily arrange your trip. Please give us a call if you are interested and we can fill you in on the possibilities.

Written By Scott Heywood

P.O. Box 845 • Sheridan, Wyoming 82801 • (P) 800-211-8530 • (F) 307-672-3920
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