Quillen River, Back After 20 Years

Finally after 20 years I got the chance to come back, to fly fish again at the Quillen River in the province of Neuquen in Argentina. We went there from Cordoba by car, we drove almost a for a full day till we got to the Alumine area where we had organized to stay at the famous Casa de Campo for 5 nights while we would be fishing in different rivers.

In our itinerary our first stop was the Quillen river, for we had decided to go with Christian, a friend and guide from Alumine.


We arrived at Casa de Campo, our accommodation for the trip, and had a great meal with Dani and Marisa where we enjoyed some amazing pasta and nice red wine from Ventus Vineyard. Judging by the wine, we knew this experience was going to be unique. Ventus vineyard is an exclusive premium class wine produced by the first winery in the Province of Neuquen. Neuquen had been considered a desert for a long time, but it has now became an oasis for wine production given its unique characteristics. This highly awarded winery is called “La bodega del fin del mundo” The Winery from the End of the World, given its position in the southernmost part of Argentina.

After that delicious meal, we spend the night together with Juan and the following day we woke up early. At about 6.30, 6.45, we prepared our rods, our lines, all our flies, specially our dry flies and nymphs that would be the ones that we would use the most. We also prepared some sandwiches with tuna, chicken, tomatoes, lettuce, and some special cheese that Juan brought for the occasion. We also took some water and gatorade for the day in a nice cooler. We were expecting a waiting day over big rocks and we were prepared to spend a lot of energy around. We picked up Cristian at around 9 am at Alumine with a selection of flies. We had our boxes packed with flies and a couple of minutes later we were driving in the direction of the river. It is not far away, just 20 minutes driving and we got to a middle area of the river where we got the lines in our rods, mostly number 3,4,5 rods, all with floating lines, long, long leads of 15 feet, normally a tippet in the front of the line to get a good presentation. We were always assuming a fish can break our tippet, especially if it gets tied around the trees in the water or the algae.


Lets talk about the Quillen river for a while. It starts in the mouth of the Quillen lake and runs to the east for about 35 km before joining the Alumine waters. The Quillen river has profuse vegetation on its banks, being willow trees the most typical species.

For February the river had very low level of water and its temperature was kind of warm. We arrived in a very sunny and clear day. During the morning there was no wind, which was nice for fly casting but in a certain way the warm temperature of the water made it more difficult to get the nice fish because they were kind of non active during the morning. In the early morning there was no activity on top of the water but later in the morning the water got calm and we saw a lot of small fish. Unfortunately,  we lost two small fish. Juan lost one fish, he lost this nice fish even before we got the chance to see how big it was. Then something similar happened to me when the line got stuck in a branch of a tree. I was landing on the water and the fish got stuck around with this tippet and I did not have the chance to hold it. Cristian was helping us a lot changing flies. We moved to different spots looking for deep waters that most of the time were calm. We looked for correderas of water, channels of water, trying to get some fish. We saw some action in those channels but the fish were not really trophies. We caught a nice one that was about 15 inches that morning and a couple around 16-17 inches. After that we stopped for lunch, we had a nice lunch looking at the river.


That lunch was amazing, we had some meat prepared by the guys of Casa de Campo and we had some great vegetable salads, too. It is nice to have some light food during the day in the water. We all met the other different groups fishing for lunch. We took a short nap, about 15-20 minutes some of us under the shades, others under the sun. When we recovered our energy we were ready to come back to the water.

Cristian, one of the guides, brought a special wine from Mendoza, where he is originally from. We appreciated that a lot. It was a really nice present from a friend. It was a nice invitation, a red Malbec wine. We decided to keep it for the evening though, save it to have it with some good cheese during a nice sunset at Casa de Campo. After lunch we decided to change the area so we came back to the pick up truck and we started to look for a different area after Christian’s suggestion. We had been in an place with lots of trees around in both sides of the river, which make it impossible to fly cast. We did the casting with the rods, the rods casting way. It was not easy, but we liked the challenge and we managed to cast the flies and present them in the right area where we were expecting to get the fish from.

Cristian was very polite, he helped us change the flies, made suggestions, and fixed leaders. Like our friend from Santiago del Estero province said, “if you’re not getting your flies in the trees, you’re not fishing.” We tried to put the flies in the last little corner looking for a trophy.


During the day Cristian was nice to invite us to fly fish in Mendoza province. There’s a couple of rivers he’d like us to go fish with him. It’s in our bucket list now! A new challenge to go to Mendoza and  see how the fishing works over there and maybe visit some wineries, too.

We had to use loads of sunscreen because the sun was really strong. We were wearing our long sleeves Columbia shirts and nsilta shirts, we were also using buffs to protect ourselves, Simms waders and fly fishing gloves and boots.

We used Sage rods, the zxl, Sage 1, Sage Approach and Sage Method. We found this latest was the better for this waters, it was stronger and we enjoyed it a lot. Sage Approach number 3 was kind of short but very interesting when we caught fish. Sage 6 feet was very challenging for this rivers. By the afternoon when the wind picked up and started blowing stronger we put the rod number 3 in the case and we decided to continue fishing with rods number 4 and 5, specially a Sage 5. It was very helpful.

The day went by very quickly. We could not believe it when we saw it was 6.30 and time to make our way back to the lodge! We were going to meet Rell Tipton, a friend coming from Cordoba where he had been wingshooting; he was joining us for the rest of the fishing trip.


We finally met Rell Tipton that evening at Casa de Campo. He made a great connection: Cordoba, Buenos Aires, San Martin de los Andes. He left in the morning and he landed around 1.30 pm at San  Martin de los Andes in Neuquen Province. Someone from our staff picked him up and took him straight to the river and Rell had some action over there and after some hours he continued driving up north to Casa Campo. 

Casa de Campo is a beautiful lodge located in the town of Alumine in the province of Neuquen. This lodge offers the unique calm typical of rural settings in the foothills of The Andes. Marisa and Dani, the lodge owners, offer the guests the most comfortable experience and wonderful breakfasts in a lodge that offers great accommodations.

The day had been really good to us, a good beginning for our trip! We enjoyed a delicious dinner together with the Malbec wine Cristian had given us. That night we were all excited for the days we had ahead.

Stay tuned and check the following reports about the rest of our experience in Patagonia!


Pablo Aguilo


Pointer Outfitters


A Legendary Adventure

Fly anglers are a different sort as many of you know. An immediate bond is created between perfect strangers when the discussion of fly fishing comes up in conversation, which frequently does.


I realize I’m biased on this topic but, seriously, can you imagine having an animated impassioned conversation with a perfect stranger if you were, say, a thimble collector? No offense to thimble collectors but the passion and the experiences just aren’t the same.

Evidence is found in the fly angler’s willingness to travel far and wide, crossing oceans and continents, just to have an opportunity to fly fish new water with new friends who may not even speak your language. Such is the case with Argentina, and with Andes Drifters out of San Martin de los Andes in particular.


The trout of Argentina are legendary of course. But it’s more than this. It’s the entire adventure; the land, the history, the people. When you leave Buenos Aires and then Bariloche on your way to San Martin, you actually feel your mind and body changing pace. You’re with new friends now in a different world than the one you left back home. And it’s comfortable yet full of anticipation.

You’re fly fishing for world class brown and rainbow trout in a variety of settings. Each day is different yet tailored to your desires. Day one may be wade fishing the mouth of a river where it enters a lake. Tiny minnows are migrating from the lake to the river to spawn and huge trout are following them. It’s a feeding blitz like you’ve never seen in freshwater.


Day two can find you on a crystal clear glacial lake carved out of the Andes eons ago. You’re fishing big attractor dry flies as the winds pick up and create enough disturbance on the surface to bring up cruising browns and rainbows looking for a meal.

The morning of your third day finds you standing at river’s edge watching a magnificently choreographed beehive of activity as the guides and support staff load rafts for an overnighter on the Collon Cura River. The camp staff will move on downstream of the anglers and have everything set up by the time you step out on land at day’s end. A gourmet meal and the famous Malbec wine await you. As you drift off to sleep, you wonder if tomorrow can possibly be as good as today. The answer; Yes, yes it can.

In all my travels, Gustavo Hiebaum and his staff at Andes Drifters are second to none. They are the friendliest, most accommodating group you’ll find and they show it in their eagerness to insure your complete satisfaction. If you want a break from fishing, they have a myriad of other activities available from hiking and biking to art galleries and sailing from which you may choose.


Jimmy Harris

Courtesy of Andes Drifters

Early Season Fishing in Alaska

Here at Enchanted Lake Lodge, we love nothing more than showing our guests the incredible fishing, scenery, wildlife and setting that only Alaska can offer.



Each year many of our potential travelers tend to flock towards the middle of the summer and the months that tend to be more “broadcasted” than the shoulder seasons of early and late summer. While mid-summer (July – August) can be spectacular, there are a few things that every potential Alaskan angler should keep in mind when considering the timing for their next trip.

June and July can provide some of the most consistent, productive rainbow trout fishing found anywhere in the world and why you should consider it when thinking about your next vacation. Take a look at a few key points to keep in mind the next time you’re tempted to brush off the early season in Alaska.


Have you ever played the game “Hungry, Hungry Hippos” as a kid, where you try and grab every piece of food that comes your way before anyone else can? If so, picture that but in an Alaskan river fresh off the spring thaw. While the rainbow trout have laid dormant and lethargic for much of the winter season, this is the first big “fiesta” for them to really get after it and bulk up while they can during the short summer season. Because of that, the opportunity to target rainbow trout with a variety of different fly patterns – whether it be dry flies, nymphs, streamers, mice (yes mice) – grows exponentially early season, and it is incredibly hard for rainbows to turn down anything put in front of them.





During the early season in Alaska, many of the lodges and outfitters are not booked solid like they are later in the summer, so the angling pressure is a lot lower with a lot more opportunities for a remote and secluded fishing experience.





While early season can be a little more susceptible to early precipitation, you can have some incredibly beautiful and sunny days during your early summer week in Alaska. Last year, June saw the highest temperatures of the year and more sun than any other month, making for some beautiful days and great fishing.


Early season in Alaska is the real deal, and a time of the summer that is vastly overlooked by too many anglers. We still have a few great openings so call today and learn more about the great fishing opportunities for the coming season.

Contact us today and we’ll be happy to get you started on what can and should be an amazing Alaskan adventure!

Pablo Aguiló


Pointer Outfitters

Third day at Chimehuin River

Today is the third day of fly fishing in our beautiful country Argentina. We woke up in a quite spectacular morning with no wind at all. After having a quick breakfast, we went down through the Quilquihue River to the Chimehuin River.


From there, we did a floated fishing and we stand by turns; sometimes I was at the front and sometimes at the back. We had to change flies several times until we found out that a particular one worked very well; a nymph that goes under the water calledCopper John 50.

Another brand that we like using when it comes to waders and boots, it’s Simms.

This brand is one of the best in terms of protection because it is a fishing company.  Founded on the pillars of innovation, it strives to build the highest quality products to keep anglers dry, comfortable, and protected from the elements – no matter the conditions. The Company was the brainchild of visionary angler John Simms who saw a need to develop better waders and accessories than what was then available on the market. That quest led to the development of Simms Fishing Products in 1980. During that era, Simms was one of the first companies worldwide to introduce neoprene waders, which provided enhanced warmth and waterproofing gear for serious anglers pushing the limits of their fishing pursuits. Today, Simms continues to take the fishing market by storm with a trained eye on fisheries conservation and inspired product development of the worlds premier technical fishing apparel, footwear, and equipment.


We have also been using original Buff Gloves that are a special polar fleece that blocks 95% of the wind for great protection against cold, great for running, walking, biking and many other outdoor activities like fly fishing, Buff Neckwarmer to protect ourselves from the wind and sun; fleece and a drawstring for quick conversion from neck to headwear, a knitted outer layer combined with a Polartec fleece inner layer, super thermal product.

In the middle of the morning, we managed to catch many great trouts from under a place filled with fallen logs. That place gave paid us with three beautiful trouts of 18 and 20 inches. David did a great job. Most of the time he chose dry flies and, even though he did not want to use any nymph, he caught a couple of trouts of 16 and 18 inches.

At lunch time, we did something like a camp in a pretty place in a shade of a beach. We had a nice surprise when a domestic duck joined us and ate next to us.


After that super nice lunch, we went fishing again. The afternoon was great but at the end it was really windy. Juan did his first casting and caught his very first brown troutof 16 inches. He was really excited and happy; it was incredible.

In that afternoon, wind was with us all the time, which complicated the casting but not the fishing. We did a camp next to the Chimehuin river and when we got there, they were waiting for us with dinner ready. We ate Patagonian lamb with grilled vegetables, always accompanied with red wine from a famous winery of Mendoza.


After a few drinks, the day was over and we went to sleep and get some rest before another day of fly fishing adventures.

Pablo Aguilo


Pointer Outfitters

In the hills of Cordoba


It was early December when we went flyfishing with Lucas Dominguez to the high mountains of Córdoba. It was necessary to do some survey to see the fishing conditions of a river inside private lands in Altas Cumbres, a beautiful place with incredible landscapes that you cannot miss.

At 7 am we were ready to leave Jesús María and two hours later we were fishing in Altas Cumbres.  On the way there, access was mostly by asphalt and 45km on a dirt road that you can only transit with a 4×4 truck.

IMG_GR_testimonials1456946378Altas Cumbres road is well-know for the historic construction of it. In the last years of the 1950s, it became clear that there was a need to modernize the old Suspension bridges road in the province of Córdoba, Argentina. Increasing traffic and trade between the provinces of Cordoba Mendoza and San Juan needed new roads to expedite travelling times and decrease costs. At the same time, it was considered important to create a route linking the ports of the Atlantic with the Pacific through the Cordoba corridor.

In 1956, President of Provincial Roads Engineer Laisseca said that it was inappropriate for the old road to be improved, but a new one should be built using the best modern technology. For this reason, during the administration of Governor Arturo Zanichelli, an aerial survey of that region of the Sierras Grandes was undertaken to map the topography. Roads were cut to enable surveyors to design the best route.

IMG_GR_testimonials1456946259When we got there, we had to open 6 gates to finally see the river. Then, we left the truck in a place inside the land and walked to the river like 40 minutes.

We decided to put our lunch inside our backpacks and just take the day off to explore the zone. Surprised by rain, we couldn’t fly-fish very well, but we found out that it was a river that goes through the mountains, between the rocks, and has open waters too. It also has few sliding river and huge water mirrors, which makes casting interesting.

When fishing, we used fishing rods number 3 but the conditions were not the best and fish were not catching our fly, so we tried out different types of fly until we found the most suitable one. That day, Lucas did a great job when catching a 7 pound trout, which is very unusual in this part of Córdoba. Four years ago, Lucas laid 10.000 alevin that we can get to see now, but it is really tough to catch them because they are not active yet.


After lunch, we continued up with some afternoon fishing, going upstream where we left our truck. Afternoon activity was not a very good one, but we saw some nice animals, mostly rainbow trouts and little trouts inside water well.

The walking back was not easy but neither impossible. For everything we used light equipment with little fly, hooks number 16 and 18, dry fly and no streamer except for one case that Lucas put to use with that huge trout he caught.


At the end of the trip, I can say I have a new challenge; go back there and do another survey when those alevins are more active.

Pablo Aguilo

Pointer Outfitters


Fly-fanatics from Japan

At Strobel Lake fly fishing Lodge we had a great season in 2014, and we would like to share with you some lines from a week in January 2014.

More Info


Battling gruesome monster rainbow trout with light fly gear is unquestionably one of the finest ways to start your fishing season. A group of dedicated fly-fanatics from Japan couldn’t agree more. They had traded hectic New Year’s preparations for the sacred silence of our Jurassic Lake River Mouth Camp, firecrackers and rockets for chrome and screaming reels, suits for waders… IMG_GR_testimonials1410980062The sporting virtues of this area lived up their world-renown reputation and our guests executed the task of chasing these chrome fighting-machines flawlessly.

Due to a late arrival of the inbound flight, the first day started with an unexpected delay. Our chef extraordinaire Luis Montivero used the time well to welcome our anglers with a classic “Asado Argentino”- nothing prepares you better for fishing than a glass of Malbec and the scent of fire-roasted beef after a long journey.

Despite the New Year preparation, the River Mouth Camp watershed performed in well-known manner. The excitement of finally getting out to fish was soon overtaken by the revelation why the Lake earned its reputation as the world’s most productive trout fishery. The weather was holding up and the fishing was nothing short of spectacular.

No firework in the world can mimic the night sky over the lake. Mother Nature in all her greatness, some bottles of champagne, good camaraderie and the joy of living a perfect New Year’s Eve. Hard to top? Well, how about 8 fish over 20 pound amongst the 8 of them on the first day?


The biggest fish had tipping the scale at 22,5 pounds.

Would you like to try yourself?

Strobel Lake: Shelter of Huge Rainbow Trout

tn_DSC_16381Fishing in this lake is definitely a unique experience. You have the feeling of being in a space where you cannot distinguish what is real from what is not, like a dream.

Here, the rainbow trout fishing is one of the most inhospitable and extreme of all the country.


“Strobel Lake” is located in the central plateau of Santa Cruz province, which has approximately 20 km long and 15 km wide and is 900 meters above sea level. It is a desert area, very rugged, with very little vegetation and full of volcanic rock, which makes it very difficult to reach. In fact, the last few miles are done very slowly to avoid damaging the trucks. You can see plenty of species of migratory birds and some endemic species such as the Hooded Grebe. Also, in the area inhabit lots of wild pumas (a large feline that resembles a lion) and guanacos (similar to a llama).


Even though we all see pictures, watch videos and read comments of other travelers before making our own trip, it is very hard to put in words or pictures how it is here in this wonderful fishing place, where is found one of the largest and wildest rainbow trout populations of the planet. Not only is the size of these fish what amazes people, but also, their vitality and strength.

It is possible to catch trout in between 4.4 pounds and 26 pounds, with an average size of 11 pounds; and it is not crazy to think that with the lake in good condition, an average angler can get 30, 40 or even more of these fish.

tn_foto 11

It is hard to think that a fish of this size has so much energy during “the fight”, creating endless runs and jumping over and over again. With this in mind, there are plenty of different possibilities and options for anglers. You can choose to fish in the lake with heavy hand equipment or with a two handed #7, and a streamer or tube fly. Or you can fish in the area close to the mouth of the only stream that enters the lake area, the Barrancoso River, since this is an obligatory route for the trout that try to enter the River. In the area near the mouth, we can try with lighter equipment, depending on the strength of the wind. But, there is no doubt that the most intense experience is exploring the crystal clear water of the Barrancoso River.


“Our stay was fantastic; the staff of the lodge is always paying attention to the guest’s needs, the food is excellent and the guides are very professional. And most important of all: “the fishing was from another planet”.

For more information, visit our website: http://www.pointerflyfishing.com