Futaleufú, Chile
Rainbow & Brown Trout

Across the border from Esquel, Argentina, and deep into the Coyhue Forest of the Tenth Region of Chile, flows the azure- depth of the Futaleufú River. A world away from the hustle and bustle that even sleepy Esquel represents, the “Big River” (Futaleufú’s translation from the native Tehuelche tongue) rolls along amid some of the most unspoiled mountain scenery on the planet. South of the Chilean Lake District, Futaleufú is a standalone fishery. This giant river grows healthy stocks of Rainbow and Brown trout that are fed by abundant hatches of Mayfly, Caddis, and Stoneflies. A heavy resident stock of fish and great hatches combined with classic fly water make the Futaleufú a trout fisherman’s paradise!


  • Spectacular diversity of fishing from float trips on the Futaleufú River to intimate tributaries and hidden lakes where trout may have never seen a fly.
  • Prolific fly hatches throughout the season.
  • Brown and Rainbow Trout with occasional Sea Run species.
  • Trophy trout in addition to prolific numbers of fish in the 15-18 inch class.
  • Excellent home waters fishing, right on the lodge doorstep – Great for afterhours fishing!
  • Spectacularly private and romantic lodge setting.
  • Horseback guided fishing excursions.


Coordinates: 43°11’04.8″S 71°51’59.0″W

Futa Lodge is situated in the Valle de Las Escalas on the Futaleufu River, in the Tenth Region of Chile. The lodge sits on a high riverbank overlooking the river and is situated on a private ranch. Chile’s Mountainous Tenth Region rises above some of the most ancient temperate rainforest in the world. This lush environment plays host to a diverse range of wildlife.

Getting there

Driving time is for about 1-1.5 hours taking into account customs. Guests flying into Santiago, on the other hand, will need to fly to the Chaiten airport. From Chaiten, you’ll be transferred to the lodge via a lodge representative (about four hours drive time).



Facilities & Services

The Lodge

Welcome to your remote and relaxing riverfront home in the Valle de las Escalas region of Chilean Patagonia. Our lodge can host up to 8 guests (6 anglers and 2 non-anglers). There are three bright and comfortable cottages—one next to the main lodge and the others bordering the river’s edge. The main lodge consists of a cozy living room with a fireplace and two additional double rooms. Laundry service is available.

Food and drink

At Nervous Waters, our kitchens come to life through the use of fresh and regionally representative meats and produce. By combining these elements, we create delicious flavors and varied textures that harbor hidden stories and package traditions on each plate. A top-notch team of experienced national and international chefs, trained in both classic and avant-garde culinary techniques, execute our food. With an artisan’s touch, chefs prepare every dish by scratch to be served at a minute’s notice. In addition, our inspired lunch and dinner menus are paired with some of Argentina’s—and the world’s—best wines; Bodega Catena Zapata. In addition to our focus on fresh food with organic origins, we also celebrate our Argentine heritage with a wine partnership that brings truly world class wines to our lodges. We feel that the food we present and the wines we serve should mirror the sporting opportunities we offer—and be the very best available. While our vast country offers many options for traditional activities such as riding, hunting, eating good meats, and drinking good wines, we have chosen to blend fine food and outdoor activity at an even higher level. We feel our offerings from Bodega Catena Zapata blend perfectly into our harmonious niche in the sporting environment. Boasting many accolades from the wine community at large, a Bodega Catena Zapata wine recently received a “number four in the world” icon ranking from Wine Advocate. These are truly great wines that compete on the world stage and in addition to enjoying your sporting holiday and our excellent menus, we also hope you will also take note of our wines. They hold a special place in our culture and we are proud to serve them to you. Regional products we use at Chime and Futa lodges include such delicacies as smoked lamb and goat meat; handpicked berries from our prolific gardens; and delicate, flavorful mushrooms plucked from local forests. Classic preparations like the Spanish-influenced Curanto—an esteemed stew of earthly ingredients and heavenly flavors—give our kitchen a tasty local identity, where every meal is truly something special.

Fishing Methods

To avoid the midday heat, anglers generally leave the lodge early in the morning, around 8 a.m. Guests return to the lodge for lunch and drinks around noon. After lunch and a siesta, boats will typically leave the put-in around 4:30 p.m., returning at dusk. Fishing hours will change slightly depending on the time of year. Demanding fishermen can fish through the day and can arrange this with the head guide. Non-fishing activities such as horseback riding or canoeing are available to allow our guests to enjoy the amazing wildlife and scenery of the area, and these trips can be organized with the head guide.

The Daily Program

Fishing schedules vary seasonally. However, a hearty breakfast is usually served around 7 a.m., while lunch takes place on the shore or back at the lodge depending on your daily itinerary.

The high-gradient, trout-rich Futaleufú River flows right by the front door of the lodge. Browns and rainbows are wild and healthy and can range up to five or more pounds. Fish eat a mix of streamers, dries, and nymphs depending on the season, and the terrestrial fishing is a summertime mainstay. Big fish on ultra-buoyant foam flies is our specialty. In addition to rafting the Futaleufú, we offer exploratory missions to remote streams and trophy lakes in the area.


Lodge Specie Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
KAU TAPEN Sea-Run Brown Trout
VILLA MARÍA Sea-Run Brown Trout
CHIME Rainbow & Brown Trout
FUTA Rainbow & Brown Trout
PIRÁ Dorado
ALTO PARANÁ Dorado, Pacú, Pirá Pitá
ABACO Bonefish
BAIR'S Bonefish

Fishing Equipments

  • Rods: Pack 9-foot 5- and 6-weight rods. Fish dries on the 5- and use the 6-wt for larger streamers or when dealing with stronger winds. Always pack a backup. Sage has a great lifetime warranty and offers several rod options perfectly suited for this fishery like the Method and ONE.
  • Reels: The average size of fish on the Futaleufú River is in the 15 to 20 inch range, however there are larger fish present! We recommend reels with capable drag systems and at least 100 yards of backing. Sage make some of the best
  • Lines: Weight-forward floating fly lines are the norm on this river. Whatever you fish in Montana or the Rockies will also work great on the Futa. We like WF lines by RIO, Airflo, and SA. Also bring an integrated sinking line or two for streamers. These lines should have anywhere from 10 to 20 feet of 200- to 300-grain sinking tips. For still waters, think full-sinking and clear intermediate lines for streamers in deeper water. And always include a floater for dries.
  • Leaders: Trout aren’t particularly leader shy here. However, during the peak of the summer, especially in low-water conditions, these trout can become wary of heavier diameters. Bring 9- to 12-foot leaders in 4X or 5X for fishing dry flies. Go shorter and heavier (2X to 0X fluoro) for streamer rigs.
  • Flies: The lodge has a better than average selection of local patterns both for the Futaleufú and its tributaries, as well as some larger streamers available for purchase. However, fly patterns will sell out. With that in mind, pack flies that you might fish for trout on the spring creeks and freestone rivers of the American West, or larger chalk-streams of the U.K. Futaleufú trout are mostly opportunistic feeders and general attractor patterns work great.
  • Wet files: Woolly buggers (cone head or bead head variety) Rabbit leech patterns (varying colors; generally darker patterns) Sculpins and Dog Nobblers (varying sizes small to large in varying colors) Nymphs: Bring stonefly nymphs, dragonfly nymphs, and damselfly nymphs, bitch creek and other Pat’s rubber legged style nymphs. All bead head style nymphs down to around size 18 and as large as size 6. Finally bring a good selection of Pupa imitations between sizes 14-18.
  • Dry Flies: Dave’s hoppers and parachutes sizes 10-14 Parachute Adams sizes 12-18 Elk air Caddis sizes 14-16 Humpys and Stimulators sizes 10-18 Parachute ants sizes 16-18 Terrestrial patterns like beetles and hoppers, in foam. Sizes 8-16 Spent patterns like Lunn’s particular or Houghton Ruby in sizes 12-18.
  • Waders: Wading isn’t difficult on the Futaleufú and you will be spending most of the time in a boat. However, we recommend chest waders for warmth and to manage deeper water when you need to. Wading boots can’t have studs, and felt is also forbidden. Vibram, or any sticky rubber soled boot is the best. Given Chilean Patagonia’s climate, and water that can be in the 40s, be sure to pack long johns, wool or fleece pants, and wool or warm synthetic socks. Be sure to use a wading belt. We strongly recommend new Patagonia Waders that has proven to be extremely successfull among guides and guests.

The high-gradient, trout-rich Futaleufú River flows right by the front door of the lodge. Browns and rainbows are wild and healthy and can range up to five or more pounds. Fish eat a mix of streamers, dries, and nymphs depending on the season, and the terrestrial fishing is a summertime mainstay. Big fish on ultra-buoyant foam flies is our specialty. In addition to rafting the Futaleufú, we offer exploratory missions to remote streams and trophy lakes in the area.

Futa Lodge


Season 2017-2018: December 2017 – March 2018

7 Nights / 6 Days Fishing $ 5,250
6 Nights / 5 Days Fishing $ 4,500
5 Nights / 4 Days Fishing $ 3,750
4 Nights / 3 Days Fishing $ 2,250


* Single room and boat: 60% surcharge.

* Non-fisher rate: $ 450 per night subjected to availability.

Rates are per person based on shared room and shared guide.

  • Included: Lodging, Meals, all wines, beer, and local spirits at the Lodge, Professional guide services, fishing equipment (Rod, lines and reels).
  • Not included: Transfer from Esquel or Bariloche, Gratuities for guides and house staff, airfares and laundry service.
  • Payment terms: 50% deposit to guarantee booking. Balance due 60 days prior to departure.
  • "I can't tell you how much we enjoyed Futa! It was an incredible experience...."

    Luke C.

    Full Testimonial
  • "I thoroughly enjoyed my trip. Even though I am not a “real” fly fisherman th..."

    Bryant S., Florida.,USA .

    Full Testimonial
  • "We want to thank you again for a wonderful time at Futa Lodge. It was our favori..."

    Craig & Joan M.,UK.

    Full Testimonial
  • "I just wanted to let you know what a fantastic time I had on my trip. Futa Lodge..."

    James M., Texas.,USA

    Full Testimonial
  • "I wanted to write to thank you for a wonderful week at Futa Lodge. I was amazed ..."

    Ted M., Texas., USA.

    Full Testimonial
  • "At Futa Lodge it isn’t just about the fishing. The areas through which we floa..."

    Henry M., Florida.,USA.

    Full Testimonial
  • "My stay was excellent. The Futa Lodge is a special place. The managers are the b..."

    Gar J., London.,UK.

    Full Testimonial
  • "WOW. Andrea, thanks for all of your help and support for our recent trip. The tr..."

    Doug S., USA.

    Full Testimonial

From Our Blog

  • Fishing Report Villa Maria Lodge – Week 11: March 16 – 24 , 2017

    Similar to what we experienced the last couple of weeks, river levels have been seesawing daily due to some rain mixed with snowmelt from the headw..[...]

    Read More
  • Fishing Report Kau Tapen Lodge – Week 10 : March 11 – 18, 2017

    Fishing Report Kau Tapen Lodge – Week 10 : March 11 – 18, 2017

    The week passed was a tough one, we were incredibly unlucky with the weather conditions. We got off to a flying start on day one, river was in good..[...]

    Read More
  • Fishing Report Villa Maria Lodge – Week 9 & 10: March 4 - 16, 2017

    Fishing Report Villa Maria Lodge – Week 9 & 10: March 4 – 16, 2017

    The last couple of week in Rio Grande, especially the lower section, have been as challenging as ever. February has been quite particular, as it ra..[...]

    Read More
  • Kau Tapen Lodge – Week 9: March 4 - 11, 2017

    Fishing Report Kau Tapen Lodge – Week 9: March 4 – 11, 2017

    Wow!! One of the finest weeks of the last few years just went down on paper with 253 hooked fish in six days. The Rio Grande and the Menedez were b..[...]

    Read More
  • Fishing Report Pira Lodge – February 2017

    February began with good water conditions. The result was 60 golden dorado caught between 3 boats during the first week. Most of the fish were in t..[...]

    Read More
  • Kau Tapen Lodge – Week 8: Feb. 25 – March 4, 2017

    Fishing Report Kau Tapen Lodge – Week 8: Feb. 25 – March 4, 2017

    It’s been an explosive week at Kau Tapen Lodge. The river has been flowing at an ideal level, water clarity was good, and the wind was practicall..[...]

    Read More
  • Fishing Report Villa Maria Lodge – Week 8: Feb. 24 – March 3, 2017

    Another group of returning guests visited us at Villa Maria Lodge this last past week. Having logged more than 10 trips to the Rio Grande, they wer..[...]

    Read More
  • Fishing Report Kau Tapen Lodge – Week 7: Feb. 18 – 25, 2017

    This past week ushered in some variable weather, with light wind to start followed by a nuclear easterly that packed plenty of rain. River levels b..[...]

    Read More
  • Fishing Report Alto Parana – February 2017

    This season the Parana River ran slightly lower than usual for many weeks, so the water has been clear and warm. Those same conditions have helped ..[...]

    Read More
  • Fishing Report Villa Maria Lodge – Week 7: Feb. 18 – 23, 2017

    This past week we had a mixed group of first timers and Villa Maria Lodge regulars from Iceland and England. In between jokes about the Cold War an..[...]

    Read More
  • Fishing Report Villa Maria Lodge – Week 6: Feb. 10 – 17, 2017

    Like the last days of the previous week, this fishing week started with some rain in the lower stretch but there were serious cells of rain and sno..[...]

    Read More
  • Fishing Report Kau Tapen Lodge – Week 6: Feb. 11 – 18, 2017

    It’s safe to say this has been our most prolific week of the season, so far. And we can back up that claim with an outstanding number of incr..[...]

    Read More
  • Fishing Report Villa Maria Lodge – Week 5: Feb. 3 – 9, 2017

      The House of Forstinger’s Friends visited us last week. Willy first traveled to Villa Maria Lodge in 1986, so he’s seen a lot and has pl..[...]

    Read More
  • Fishing Report Kau Tapen Lodge – Week 5: Feb. 4 – 11, 2017

    Our fifth week at Kau Tapen lodge has come to an end. This time clients from Austria, the U.S. and England experienced some highly variable conditi..[...]

    Read More
  • Fishing Report Chime Lodge January 2017

      Malleo Waters are low for this time of year and the fish are holding in deeper pools. Late afternoon dry-fly fishing has been productice usi..[...]

    Read More
  • Fishing Report Kau Tapen Lodge – Week 4: Jan. 28 – Feb. 4, 2017

    Week four was made memorable by another awesome bunch of anglers at the lodge. Guests varied from experienced to first timers. Six members of the t..[...]

    Read More
  • Fishing Report Pirá Lodge: Jan. 7 – 31, 2017

    This year marks one of the best seasons I’ve experienced in the Ibera wetlands. And we couldn’t have asked for a better start. Water conditions..[...]

    Read More
  • Fishing Report Kau Tapen Lodge – Week 3: Jan. 21 – 28, 2017

    Another week down at Kau Tapen Lodge as we continue onward with (mostly) good conditions and excellent results. Water temperatures have been perfec..[...]

    Read More
  • Fishing Report Villa Maria Lodge – Week 3: Jan. 21 – 26, 2017

    “The perfect week at the perfect lodge with the perfect guides.” That’s how one of our returning guests, Axel, described Week 3 at Villa Mari..[...]

    Read More
  • Fishing Report Villa Maria Lodge – Week 2: Jan. 14 – 19, 2017

    We just finished the second week of the season at Villa Maria Lodge and it was fantastic. In addition to great fishing we welcomed some familiar fa..[...]

    Read More
  • Fishing Report Kau Tapen Lodge – Week 2: Jan. 14 – 21, 2017

      Our second week at Kau Tapen has come to an end and I’m pretty safe in saying the week was a success. We had a mixed group of guests f..[...]

    Read More
  • Fishing Report Kau Tapen Lodge – Week 1: Jan. 7 – 14, 2017

    Kau Tapen Fishing Report Week 1: Jan. 7-14, 2017 Kau Tapen Lodge on the Rio Grande kicks off its 34th season this year. Over the years the river ha..[...]

    Read More
  • Fishing Report Villa Maria Lodge – Week 1: Jan. 6 – 12, 2017

    Villa Maria Lodge – Fishing Report Fishing Report (Jan. 6 – 12, 2017) By Alejandro Martello   Welcome to Villa María Lodge 2017! You..[...]

    Read More
  • A Fly in the Curtains

    By Doug Larsen Copyright 2013 In 1984, Ronald Reagan was President of the United States. Madonna was a controversial twenty-something pop star as s..[...]

    Read More
  • Fly Fusion Magazine

    Fly Fusion Magazine recently spotlighted the spectacular flats fishing at Abaco Lodge. For those planning fall trips to the Marls, this bonefish-ri..[...]

    Read More
  • Fly Girls Week 2017 @ Abaco Lodge

    We’re At It Again… Fly Girls Week 2017 is just around the corner! After an extremely successful and fun inaugural trip to Nervous Waters’ Bai..[...]

    Read More
  • Bonefish Beware: Fish with Flip Pallot @AbacoLodge in June

    In 2009, Flip Pallot attended the opening of Abaco Lodge and spent time with its managing partner, Oliver White. It was the beginning of a wonderfu..[...]

    Read More
  • Pira Pitá Fly Patterns

    At Alto Parana lodge, anglers target resident Pira Pitá with lighter tackle than what is typically used for dorado. We recommend 6- to 7-weight ro..[...]

    Read More
  • Every Cast Gets Us Closer

    Every Cast Gets Us Closer Casting 4 A Cure at Bair’s Lodge, Bahamas Winter at Bair’s Lodge is the time to escape the cold and connect w..[...]

    Read More
  • Dorado Fly Patterns

    In most cases, golden dorado prefer dark patterns that produce great silhouettes in tannin-colored waters. But there are situations when carrying a..[...]

    Read More

    We are hoping to tag 1,000 fish that week -some on rod and reel some with nets. Clients are welcome and encouraged to be as involved in this proces..[...]

    Read More

      What could be better? The great thing about a hosted trip is exceptional fishing at a top-notch lodge—but also combining that action with ..[...]

    Read More
  • Pira Lodge – End of Season 2016

    The Dream Season Seasons, just like the name implies, are all about change. Some are challenging, where rewards are hard won. Others are easier, wh..[...]

    Read More
  • Villa María Lodge -­ Fishing Report (March 20 – 27, 2016)

    We have just  finished one of the most challenging weeks on the Rio Grande this season. The problem wasn’t fish—we have the fish! But the weat..[...]

    Read More
  • Pacú Fly Patterns

    Pacú fishing at Alto Parana lodge is all about exciting sight-fishing opportunities. We use 8-weight rods, rigged with floating tropical lines, in..[...]

    Read More
  • Studies about the Rio Grande

    Posted on February 6, 2015 by Nervous Waters By Bio. Miguel Casalinuovo. Tech. Carlos Luizón began studying salmonids in the Rio Grande system in ..[...]

    Read More