Trout Bum Rio Pico
January 21st-February 1st 2018
Trout Bum is the real deal for the fly fisher that prefers time on the water over time in the lodge. If you want a five-star lodge, open bar then Trout Bum is not for you. But if you just need a good bed, plenty of hot water, hearty meals and the opportunity to fish for 10 hours a day with some of best guides in Argentina, then Trout Bum might be for you. You can expect to hike 5-6 miles per day in the water and on uneven terrain to get to some prime trout waters. The beauty of Trout Bum is variety of choice. Rio Pico offers lakes, rivers, floats, and stream for rainbow, brown, and brook trout. I like the moving waters but a day on one of the lakes is a must as the lakes hold some really large fish. Within reason and weather permitting, Trout Bum allows a guest to customize his or her adventure to suit!
Logistics: We spent a night at Buenos Aires each way and “BA” is a nice city to visit and enjoy the sights, restaurants, people watching and relax after a long 24 hour plus travel day. Alicia of Holdy Tours does a great job. She did the in-country travel arrangements. Hotel Intersur Recoleta was excellent with a nice breakfast and great Recoleta location. Justin does a great job putting the whole package together and “fine tuning” the details to provide the most enjoyment to each of the guests.
Guides are great. They are hardworking concierges that drive their Toyota Hilux trucks to and from locations up to an hour or so from the quaint lodge in Rio Pico and tend to your every need. The shore lunches were great and the Asado BBQ is a lot of fun too. Be sure to stock up on your beverages of choice. The small store in Rio Pico is surprisingly well-stocked with a good selection of beverages and food. Our guides were Guille and Rogel.
Patagonia weather can be best described as variable. Never harsh but the wind blows and one can expect maybe one calm day in ten. One day was T-shirt weather and one day was snowing and blowing! Proficient casting is a plus. The guides do their best to go to the waters where the wind can be mitigated to a degree. I liked my legacy Sage XP 10’ Six Weight for the rivers and streams and my Temple Fork Seven and Eight Weight TiCr X rods for the lakes. The XP was my go to rod and the Rio Outbound Short was my line of choice for moving waters. Though at times I used sink tip lines in the deeper pools. Integrated sink tip or full sink lines are needed for the lakes. My friend was the lake master with a Seven Weight Rod and a Teeny 200 grain sink tip line. My use of Versi-tips was not as effective. It really depends on where the fish are feeding. You and your guide are the depth finders! Guides do a great job on fly selection whether it be streams, dries, or nymphs.
The fishing depends on a lot of factors, with the weather most influencing. We had days where we caught and released a lot of smaller fish with a few larger fish and some days where a couple of trophy fish made the day. In our group every one caught and released trophy browns and rainbows and a couple of us caught and released a few trophy brook trout. When I say trophy fish I mean fish between 4 and 8 pounds and 20”-28”. My best fish were from the streams. Friends caught some even larger fish in the lakes, some Browns and Brook Trout over 10#.
So, what is the bottom line? Would I do this trip again….You betcha!