Jim and Malcolm Tomes

Trout Bum Rio Pico


As you now I am a demanding customer and you met/exceeded my expectations. I sent you FB request so you can see pictures and how I raved about the trip. You can me use me for a referral anytime and I will be taking you up on my lodge circuit this coming fall.

We drove 300 miles on mostly dirt roads across the frontier from Chile to Rio Pico, Argentina. The only country I have seen that remote was the tundra of Northern Quebec. We met our guides in town around 3 PM and headed out to the country to the gaucho station. I thought we were car camping that night but I was mistaken we had 10 mile hike that afternoon to our campsite. We left at 5 PM and made to camp around 8:30 PM. It was a remote gaucho camp recently opened to fishing along the border with Chile in the Andes Mountains. Our modern tent is to the right of the picture. We were the first Norte Americanos to fish these waters and it was epic.

Spending New Year’s Eve in the tiny town of Rio Pico and watching the Gauchos ride into town on horseback for the festivities was one of my favorite parts. I will also always remember playing pool in the same tiny town in a dumpy bar with all the fishing guides till the wee hours of the morning. Speaking of them, Alfredo Bovio, Nehuen Bovio and Emiliano Luro have become friends for life. I am already planning a return trip with Melinda Williams Tomes. Patagonia is the most beautiful place I have ever been.

-Alfredo and Neheun were awesome both as guides and more importantly human beings. I could not have picked two better men than these to spend 8 days with. 

-Emiliano is a real pro and a great man as well.

-The hike to Mesa is 10 miles and is relativity easy but we are from the West and used to slope and altitude.  The lack of altitude made it is easy even for my 53 year old ass. That said the guacho carried some things on horseback on the way in and then offered an extra house on our way out and we of course took him up on it. I would consider making this a standard and have the gear brought in by horse. We have done a few spike camps in the Sierras where we hike in but mules drop our gear. Add a Yeti or two to the program and it could be first rate. (Editor's note - we brought the Yeti's down this year!)  It rained the first night but we stayed  at a gaucho camp which had tarps. Tarps are great to get out of the rain for dinner. The wading was not for the faint of heart. 

-Esquel is a truly beautiful town and I am bring my wife back.

-Buying dinner for us on Friday night was unexpected and unnecessary but was a nice touch and much appreciated. The meal was fantastic. I pussed out though and just got a steak. At 53 and well-traveled I no longer need organ meat and blood sausage. Nehuen did his best to get me to eat some but I told him I already have in many places.

-Vasco’s was a treat and Karina was a true sweetheart.

-Cash was impossible to get. Make clients get Argentine pesos before they leave the US.  (Editor's note - we can change cash for you when you get here, just ask in advance). 


Great trip and Thank you for putting it on.


All the best,




Feel free to comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *