January 2016

Kau tapen Lodge: January 9 – 16, 2016

Opening Week “Welcome home!” were the first words house manager Carolina said to me upon arrival. Alejandro Hemmingson’s bear hug followed, a warm welcome that had me feeling like I’d never left. The blues skies overhead were also a nice change from the storms and rain that the North Atlantic had been dumping on Ireland for eight week straight prior to my departure. And with that, it was great to be back among good friends on the banks of the Rio Grande after a year sabbatical hunting big brown trout in New Zealand. Caro and her team had pre-season preparations well underway by the time I arrived and the lodge was in tip-top shape. Meanwhile, on the river, no stone was left unfished as the guide team got themselves reacquainted with the river. On Jan. 9, we welcomed the Ackman group, accompanied by fly-fishing aficionado Oliver White. The group included many familiar faces, as well as three complete fly-fishing virgins. The enthusiasm of the novices was evident from the get-go. Within an hour of arriving at the lodge we had them suited, booted, and knee-deep in the Rio Grande. Some of the more experienced guests also took the opportunity to take a refresher course with the double-hander rigs. Max Mamaev was not long in planting the seed of knowledge in some of his students. And Nick Botta, under Max’s careful tutelage, was into a fish literally minutes after picking up a two-handed rod for the first time. The good news was that the fish were in, and the trend of hooking and catching them continued through the week with large numbers of sea-runs moving into our waters. By far the most successful fly was the yellow rubberlegs. Old favorites such as the Sun Ray Shadow, Green Machine, and bunny leeches […]

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Tierra del Fuego: Wild as the wind

Text & Photos Matt Harris Far to the west, the Rio Grande comes splashing down out of the Chilean Andes to begin its long, meandering descent across the wide pampas of central Tierra del Fuego before spilling into the Atlantic. It is, to the untrained eye, not an especially enticing river – the savage and often unrelenting winds that whistle across the wide, flat plains prevent anything much from growing to any great height, and the river banks are bleak and almost entirely devoid of trees. Read the whole article Tierra del Fuego: Wild as the wind by Matt Harris Posted in Fin Chasers Magazine

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Kau Tapen Lodge: March 14- 20, 2015

So ends another fun fishing session at Kau Tapen Lodge, but by all accounts it was not your average week. Mark Taylor from Mavungana, Norway, brought his friends from all the way up there, to all the way down here. I’d been looking forward to this week as I know the crew well from guiding in Norway, and I knew that it was going to be, well, fun as hell. The crew didn’t disappoint, and it didn’t take them long to christen the lodges new hot tub in a spectacular show of partial male nudity. But I’m sure you folks don’t want to hear too much about male bonding sojourns, so let’s cut to the chase and talk about some fishing! The river is still running low, and cold and clear. As with the last few weeks this has meant great opportunities for some technical fishing. Small heavy nymphs, slow-sinking/intermediate tips, and good presentations made all the difference. After sunset, small Sunrays were fished with confidence and often produced three or four fish in the dying minutes of the day. The final tally of the week was 135 fish landed, and another 25 lost after a short fight. The largest fish was Kristoffe Vasdal’s beautiful 21-pound buck. It was sad to see the group leave this morning, my only consolation being I’ll see most of the guys again, when salmon season starts this summer. Hope to see you on the water, —James Topham and the Kau Tapen Guide Team

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