Wednesday, March 11, 2009
Saturday, March 07, 2009
This is one of my favorite photos of Clay's many, many catches. Don't let the fish's size deceive you--it had the heart of a champion but took on a bit more than it could swallow.
Clay often offered me the most ideal-looking fishing holes, and I would accept, only to see Clay downstream catching more (and bigger) trout. After a while I started thinking, 'something fishy's going on', so at this particular prime hole, I turned down his offer...only to see Clay pull out this 20" monster rainbow (and about 10 other trout)! You are quite the fisherman, Clay!
Chilly mornings in Patagonia often turned into hot afternoons, and dressing in layers was key. Here's the highly-fashionable Esma dressing for the day's weather (and looking an awful lot like a rodeo clown...or Pippi Longstocking). Esma was gracious enough to let me post this semi-embarrassing photo of her but wanted me to point out that she was still color-coordinated!
The water in Patagonia was the purest I've ever seen. We were often tempted to drink straight from the rivers! Here's Clay casting into a crystal clear fishing hole.
Although we spent a bulk of our time camping and fishing, we did take some time to check out the nearby towns. Here we are outside of Junin.
Our last day of fishing was the best, with well over 200 fish combined between us, including this nice brown trout. We caught so many fiesty fish that our forearms were sore from all the fights!
And what's a great trip without some delicious local eats? My last day in Argentina was spent exploring Clay and Esma's adopted home of Bariloche. Here we are in downtown enjoying some choripan (Argentinian sausage dogs, aka "heart-attack in a bun"), made by the local choripan master himself!
Thanks for letting me visit, Clay and Esma! I had a great time in trout heaven. Hope to go back sometime!
Saturday, February 28, 2009
Our good friend and fishing buddy Ian came down for a visit to see and fly fish Patagonia. He arrived in Bariloche on Saturday afternoon, Feb. 21, after a LONG trip: he sat on the tarmac for 3 hours at RDU airport Wed. night, Feb. 18, because of a weather delay at JFK and ended up not getting to leave Durham until Thursday; connected through Dallas on Thursday; then on to Buenos Aires; then a 20+ hour bus ride across the Pampas of Argentina to Bariloche.
After that, we proceeded to drag him around northern Patagonia staying in a tent each night with no access to showers, electricity, etc., for a round trip of 1000 km and 4 different campsites in 5 nights. At least we did take him to a good Argentine parrilla (steakhouse) before we left for our camping/fishing adventure. Here is Ian with his Sirloin steak cooked to perfection. The steak was too big to include his salad and glass of wine in the picture. :-) Oh, and did he ever catch the fish. Let's just say that on his last full day in Patagonia (Thursday, Feb. 26), he caught 100 trout in ONE DAY, and one of them was a 21 inch brown trout (photo to come later if we can get Ian to guest blog). Thanks for coming to visit, Ian! We had a blast!
Sunday, February 15, 2009
The fishing was excellent in terms of quantity of fish. Most of the fish in Rio Meliquina this time of year are not big by Patagonian standards, although we did come across a few large fish. But what this river lacks in big fish, it more than makes up for in quantity, and unlike in many Patagonia rivers, the fish respond very well to dry flies.
Esma practiced her fly cast and fished some yesterday but didn't catch anything. This morning, however, she caught her first fly-caught trout, and then proceeded to catch 8 more in the same spot! We were both very excited. We combined to catch 62 trout (35 rainbow and 27 brown) between 7am yesterday and 10:30 am today.
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
Tuesday, February 03, 2009
The wind in Patagonia can be something fierce. This is the best shot we could get of the Argentine flag when we crossed the border.