The Patagonian BaseCamp, Chile
The Patagonian BaseCamp offers quite simply the best fishing that we have yet discovered in Chile.
The word BaseCamp is slightly misleading as it conjures up the image of a small tent on the side of the Himalayas but it has been chosen by Marcel Sijnesael for a very good reason.
The wonderfully comfortable lodge acts as the base for a huge range of fishing options that can be explored in this stunning region. From bonefish style fishing on a crystal clear lake to floating down some of the most beautiful rivers on the planet, fishing for territorial and aggressive trout, this lodge has it all.
The style of fishing is as varied as the options. If the weather is cooperating, you can fish size 2 dry flies whilst drifting down a riverbank or you can find yourself casting dragon fly style patterns to lakeside reeds whilst watching trout hurl themselves out of the water to snatch your offering before it has even touched the water.
When the weather is wet the BaseCamp, unlike other Chilean lodges, has a plethora of options. Riding a local gaucho style horse to a remote mountain lake or trying a streamer in some of the deeper pockets on the rivers – you will not be short of things to do.
One of the most popular options, the cross-border, PatagoniaOne, programme, combines the best fishing on both sides of the Andes. A 10-night package which includes 3 days of fishing from our Las Pampas Lodge in the Río Pico valley in Argentina. Followed by a seamless 2 hour transfer to Chile where anglers spend 3 more days of floating the spectacular Figueroa reach out of our TempleCamp and then transitioning back into the standard BaseCamp format for another 3 days of fishing.
As the distances between the lodges are short, there is no loss of fishing time. The 10-night package allows you 9 full days of the most diverse fishing. For those wishing to combine those stellar wilderness day floats with some “off-the-grid” small stream walk and wade trips this PatagoniaOne program is a must-do.
If you like catching wild fish on a dry fly, in fabulous scenery, in the knowledge that there is hardly a soul within a 100 miles of you, whilst being looked after like a king then Patagonian BaseCamp is an option that you ought to consider.
To read a recent article in the FT How to Spend It, please click here.
To see a video on the PatagoniaOne experience, please click here.
The lodge is set in a stunning position on the Palena river and offers eight ensuite bedrooms with a further bedroom should it be required. All of the rooms are either twin bedded or have queen sized double beds.
All of the packages are inclusive and they take that word very seriously indeed. From the moment you arrive to the moment you leave it is practically impossible to ask for something that they do not offer. All of your drinks are included, all rod and reel hire, wading boots, dry bags, coats and shoes for around the lodge are available to you at no extra cost.
There is also a gym and a sauna as well as a hot tub which overlooks the river. A cold beer in a warm hot tub after a great day’s fishing is hard to beat.
The out camps(Palena and Temple) are set up for four rods at a time with accommodation in two fixed tents which offer seriously comfortable bankside accommodation with en suite, outside bathrooms. You go out with just your team, your guides and one or two Chilean helpers for an overnight or a two night stay.
Nearly every rod that is offered the out camp starts off by saying that they would prefer to stay in the BaseCamp as they are worried about comfort levels etc. Nearly every rod comes back saying that they wish they had more time in the camps!
Non fishers are encouraged and there is a full programme in place from horse riding, whale watching on the coast, an in house yoga specialist as well as simply joining the rods on the river for a day float. There have been many arguments over the dining room table with each protagonist proclaiming their day better than everyone else’s.