Austral Kings

Trophy Chinook salmon on the fly in one of fishing’s last frontiers


The Austral Kings Story

Finding a genuinely “undiscovered” fly fishing destination isn’t easy these days. In fact, twin brothers, Alex and Nico Trochine have been scouring South America in search of one for years. In February 2015 they made an exploratory expedition along the central Chilean coast chasing rumors of massive King Salmon populating many of the rivers in the region. They sampled several rivers on their explorations – many of which have runs of Kings but were not, what they felt, were fly fishing friendly. It wasn’t until they landed on the last river of the trip when they knew that they had discovered, what might possibly be, South America’s King fishing Shangri-la. Blown away by the jaw-dropping scenery, fish-ability of the river, average size (25-50 lbs.), and healthy population of salmon, they decided that this river was the place to set up their operation.

The River

The River runs through a green valley surrounded by glacier-capped granite mountains. Even after heaving rains, the river runs a deep turquoise color and has a variety of fishy structures, from gravel beaches, big boulders, classic tailwaters, and deep runs. The bulk of the salmon run seems to arrive in mid-January – late March. The chosen location for Austral Kings Camp is right on the river and we will be able to access five kilometers of water by foot, and 10 more by jetboat. Fishing will be done mostly from the bank swinging flies.

The Climate

The weather in summer is generally quite friendly, most of the time 10°–20°C. Due to its closeness to the marine environment, we might have occasional rain or fog.

Best Season

The first king salmon enter the river during December and our season starts in early January and runs well into late March. Austral Kings is all about fishing for fresh king salmon so we end the season well before the fish start to color up.

Based on the 2016 exploratory season all our weeks are peak season. We could probably start a few weeks earlier and surely finish a few weeks later but for 2017 we are only offering prime weeks. On every tide new fresh king salmon enter the river and at any given week in season, you will be fishing over a remarkable number of fish that will often show while rolling. What makes good weeks turn into great weeks is therefore not based on the number of fish in the river but rather on the best possible weather conditions. Very clear water and blue skies make for tougher fishing than when a bit of rain or melt-off helps color the water a bit. And with the surrounding granite mountains, being blown out isn’t possible.

In short, pick any week in the season that suits your calendar and you will have the chance of hooking a chrome-bright king salmon of a lifetime.

Sample Itinerary:

Sunday Arrive in Santiago and catch connecting flight to Puerto Montt. Overnight at your elected accommodations in either Puerto Montt or Puerto Varas (independently arranged, not included).

Monday At 6-7 AM you will be picked up at your hotel and transported to Caleta la Arena to catch a ferry across the fjord, continuing on by land to the port of Hornopiren. From there you will board a private boat to take you the remainder of the way (~2hrs) to Austral Kings. Total travel time is 5-6 hrs. Upon arrival at the camp, you will get settled in, have something to eat, and fish in the nearby home pools.

Tuesday-Sunday Six full days of guided fishing at Austral Kings!

Monday Depart camp around 1 pm in time to catch a private boat back to Puerto Montt, arriving at approximately 7 pm. Catch a late flight returning to Santiago, or overnight in Puerto Montt and return the following morning.

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