May 23rd, 2018
Brothers Gaston and Claudio Urrejola may be the most talented, multi-faceted lodge owners we have ever met. Between them they can do virtually anything including building a spectacular lodge themselves and then turning that into one of the best run fly fishing and multi-sport lodges in South America. Located just outside of the regional capital of Coyhaique, an area widely considered Chile’s trout fishing mecca, this first-class modern facility sets the standard for premier fly fishing lodges in Chilean Patagonia. The lodge’s program offers a diverse and exciting array of excellent trout fishing opportunities, including lots of private access fishing properties, as well as a wide range of outdoor experiences including hiking, mountain biking, rafting and horseback riding. In short, they have something for everyone and they do it all with expertise and care.
Set where the rolling foothills reach up towards the Andes, Coyhaique River Lodge’s setting is truly spectacular. With first-class accommodations and meals, a convenient location, a staff that prides itself on superior service and a long list of available angling and adventure options, this operation has earned a special place in the hearts of its’ clients for the all the right reasons.
Expert Interview with Fly Water Travel co-owner Brian Gies
1. A seemingly endless and ever growing list of fishing options where guests will never repeat the same beat twice.
2. The lodge is a great choice for dedicated anglers, multi-sport fans or folks who simply want to relax and take in the rich Patagonian culture and scenery.
3. Hard working, customer service driven owners that are actively involved with guests.
4. A skilled and experienced guide and support staff.
5. Comfortable first-class lodge facility with stunning views of the Coyhaique River valley.
6. Casual and friendly lodge atmosphere.
Where is the lodge?
The lodge is located on 40 acres along the banks of the Coyhaique River five miles outside of the town of Coyhaique, Chile.
How do I get there?
Most international anglers arrive Santiago, Chile in the morning, catch a midday flight south to the town of Balmaceda and then transfer 45 minutes to the lodge.
When should I go?
The lodge is open from November to May.
Where do they fish?
The main course of the fishing program is centered around the areas famed rivers including the Simpson, Nirehuao, Paloma, Manihuales, Emperador Guillermo and several private spring creeks, small streams and trophy lakes rounding out their offerings.
Who is best suited for this destination?
Coyhaique River Lodge has something for everyone and is a great choice for dedicated anglers, multi-sport fans or folks who simply want to relax at the lodge and take in the rich Patagonian culture and scenery.
What are the accommodations and meals like?
They are very nice. The main lodge features eight double occupancy suites, dining room, wine cave, spacious lounge/bar area and a wood-fired hot tub and sauna. The meals include both Chilean specialties and international dishes that include a variety of fresh locally sourced meats, fish and produce.
Describe the atmosphere and style of the lodge?
It’s a modern lodge with an upscale casual vibe set atop a hillside overlooking the Coyhaique River valley. The program is small enough that guests and staff get to know each other by name but just big enough where guests can be autonomous if they choose.
Is there an onsite manager, owner or point person at the lodge?
Both owners Gaston and Claudio Urrejola live on property with their families and one of them is available to guests at all times. Gaston serves as the primary lodge manager and host and greets guests each day when they return to the lodge from fishing to check-in and discuss the next days fishing plans. Overall the owners and their staff are extremely attentive and work hard to ensure each of their guests a memorable experience.
Is there internet and cell service?
The lodge has good internet service. Cell service is available but you will need to check with your US carrier to set up an international service plan.
What is the cost?
Please see the Rates and Details section of our Coyhaique River Lodge web page for the current rates: https://www.flywatertravel.com/destination/Coyhaique_River_Lodge
How do they fish?
The two main set-ups that are most productive throughout the majority of the season are typical dry/dropper rigs and casting large foam dries. Although the season is dominated by top water action there are times, typically early and late season, that require sink lines and streamers.
Is there wade fishing?
Yes, there is plenty of wade fishing available. In a typical fishing week, anglers fish a variety of water both while wading and from boats. However, guides can customize fishing schedules to suit particular angler preferences allowing guests to wade some or all of their fishing days.
How long does it take to reach the fishing grounds?
Most fishing areas are reached within a 30-60 minute drive from the lodge. There are a few trophy fisheries that require longer drives.
What fish will I catch?
Rainbow and brown trout in the 14-20 inch class with legitimate shots at 30+ inch rainbows in some of their private lakes.
How many fish will I catch?
Catch rates vary greatly throughout the season and from fishery to fishery. Anglers can experience days of catching 10-16″ browns and rainbows hand over fist while other days they work hard for a handful of larger trophy fish.
Will we see other anglers?
CRL has both public and private fishing accesses. Guests might cross paths with other anglers on some of the area’s popular public rivers. However, when fishing the lodge’s vast collection of private waters guests will not see other anglers.
Do guides speak English?
All of the guides speak good conversational and fishing English.
What are the guides like?
The lodge employs a team of hard working and seasoned professional fly fishing guides. The guides are friendly, interesting conversationalists, patient instructors and in general good folks to spend time with on the water or back at the lodge.
Does the lodge provide equipment?
Yes. The lodge has a good selection of high quality tackle, waders and boots available for rent. It’s best to notify the lodge prior to arrival if loaner gear is needed. The lodge has a small tackle shop with a good selection of productive flies, fly lines and terminal tackle for sale.
What is your favorite rod(s) for the trip?
A high quality fast action 5 wt. with a floating line will cover most fishing situations throughout the season. It’s also a good idea to have a 6 or 7 wt. with a sinking line for throwing streamers, when needed.
Are there other activities?
Yes, the lodge offers an adventure package with a wide range of activities to choose from including kayaking, horseback riding, trekking, cultural tours, sightseeing and mountain biking.
What are the physical demands?
Generally speaking, there aren’t any notable physical demands. Gaston, the lodge co-owner and manager, does an incredible job placing anglers in the best water to suit the fishing and physical abilities of each angler.
Are there special skills required?
Not really. One skill to brush up on prior to the trip is to practice casting in the wind with accuracy.
Dangers and annoyances?
Nothing comes immediately to mind. Traveling in Chile is generally safe and easy.
Are there health concerns?
No, but we still recommend visiting the Center for Disease Control and Prevention site before traveling to make sure that the situation has not changed. View CDC updates here.
Stay in a comfortable, modern first-class lodge with stunning views of the Coyhaique River valley.
Fish a variety of highly productive waters where crossing paths with other anglers is the exception, not the norm.
Cast large foam dry flies to feisty brown and rainbow trout.
Unwind and enjoy the view from the lodge’s spacious guest lounge and bar.
If you’d like to learn more about this destination or start exploring other Patagonia fishing possibilities drop us a line at EMAIL or call 800-552-2729.