Northern Patagonia Guide Service
Fish the most iconic rivers in Patagonia
About the Region
Home to some of the most famous rivers in Patagonia, Northern Patagonia, also commonly known as the “Lake District”, boasts a rich fly fishing history and culture, making it a veritable “Trout Mecca” among Argentine fisheries. At roughly 40 degrees south, it holds the northernmost of Patagonia’s trout waters, and is one of the most popular destinations among both Argentine and foreign fishermen. With a compact network of crystalline streams and rivers pouring freely from large Andean lakes, this area has drawn anglers from around the world for well over half a century, and for good reason. Offering unrivaled opportunities for rainbow, brown and brook trout in pristine watersheds surrounded by a relatively hospitable landscape and good infrastructure, no other region caters so well to the various needs of visiting anglers.
Although Northern Patagonia itself is quite large, its trout waters are mostly confined to its western margins which hug the eastern slopes of the Andes. The entire system straddles a distinct climatic transition zone, where temperate rainforests in the Andean cordillera abruptly give way to increasingly parched steppe to the east. As such, many of the best trout rivers in this zone originate in forested mountain lakes and then flow mostly through arid, treeless valleys contrasted by verdant riparian vegetation clinging to the river banks.
Much of the scenery is dominated by the lush temperate rainforests of Lanín National or Nahuel Huapi National Parks, which encompass nearly every headwater lake in the system. Snow-capped peaks such as Mt. Tronador or Volcán Lanín rise prominently over the surrounding landscape, with permanent glaciers clinging to their steep slopes extending nearly to the dense forests below and are visible above the arid terrain to the east for many miles, providing a dramatic backdrop when fishing some of the region’s most popular rivers. The prehistoric Araucaria, or Monkey Puzzle tree, is also one of the area’s most defining characteristics, and is unique to this part of the world. An ancient vestige from when dinosaurs still ruled the earth, it has endured since the Mesozoic Era and is one of the world’s oldest living tree species – engendering much of the land with an exotic air, at once primordial and otherworldly. Gauchos, or Argentine cowboys, on horseback and native Mapuches with ox-driven carts are also regular sights, and it’s not at all uncommon to see these antiquated modes of transportation unhurriedly passing through downtown Junín or Aluminé. Taken together, all of these aspects quickly establish Northern Patagonia as the setting for a truly unique fly fishing experience.
The season runs November thru April