Aug 1st, 2019
Colombia is trending as a new and exciting fly fishing destination. From the Pacific Coast where anglers seek sailfish, tuna, and huge snapper to the rivers of the Orinoco drainage where peacock bass, pacu, and payara are plentiful, this is a country we have been watching closely.
Jon Covich, our Cuba expert, has lead the charge researching these fisheries and the outfitters that support them. Jon has now been to Colombia and finding a reliable, detail-oriented outfitter has to date proved a challenge. Fly Water Travel has never been interested in jumping in to business quickly with just any new lodge or outfitter. Our standards mandate that the fisheries and fishing programs are solid and that our customers will be taken good care of on site. Today we seem to be much closer to finding such an outfitter.
Colombia Afloat runs an operation on the Tomo River and has come highly recommended by several discerning sources. After many conversations and e-mails, we have scheduled Fly Water Travel’s initial exploratory trip for March of 2020. The Tomo River is located within the Tuparro Natural Reserve and is home to about 280 different species of fish, not to mention the other mammals, reptiles and birds which call this reserve home. This is one of the main tributaries of the famous Orinoco River. Fly anglers will concentrate on trophy peacock bass, although there are opportunities for pacu, payara, arawana, and multiple species of catfish.
Worth noting is that this is a true exploratory trip for Fly Water Travel. The outfitter’s program is established but this will be our first visit. Mints on pillows and fabulous wine selections are not expected. That said, this floating camp appears comfortable and well-equipped. Guests will sleep two per cabin, each with their own shower and flush toilet. Meals with be hearty but not gourmet and served in a dining tent under the canopy of the jungle.
Colombia Afloat seems to have made this itinerary clean and simple, which has been a shortcoming of some of the other programs we have looked into. Guests will fly directly to Medellin if possible. There are direct flights from Miami, Ft Lauderdale, and JFK. Medellin is a very interesting city, with diverse districts and excellent food. After a night in town, our group will shuttle to the local airport for a 2.5-hour charter flight followed by an overland drive and boat ride to camp. The post-flight journey takes about four hours total, and guests will have ample time that first day to acclimatize to the camp, get settled into their rooms, and organize fishing gear.
The group will then have six full days of guided fishing. Each day starts early, with breakfast in camp and then boat rides to the different fishing zones. Days end around 5pm, so the fishing days tend to be very long. We may have anglers in camp that are not fly fishing, but we will separate ourselves from them when fishing. Floating lines are most popular, and anglers will have a great variety of habitats to fish. Varied scenarios will include the main river, lagoons, and small lakes that separate themselves from the main river as waters recede during the dry season. We will blind cast at likely looking spots, and sight fish over sand in shallow bays. Poppers will provide very exciting fishing in shallow water situations, while streamers presented below the surface may work better in deeper water. Peacocks here vary greatly in size and seem to max out at just under 20 pounds.
After our six days of fishing, we will depart early for our return trip to Medellin where we will again spend the night and enjoy the city. Those interested can add on days to explore more of Colombia. There is a lot to see here, and it is worth considering adding on a little time if you can. Otherwise, guests will shuttle to the international airport the next morning for flights home.
“As always you guys do a great job. Having Jon Covich was a pleasure. Helpful and personable with a lot of knowledge and great people skills.” – Jeff Stark
For more information contact Jon Covich at 206.579.9342 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Dates: March 6-15, 2020
Group: 6 guests
Price: $4000 pp based on double occupancy plus $250 host fee.
Included: two nights in Medellin, transport to and from Medellin to camp, all lodging and meals at camp, water, soft drinks, and beer at camp
Not Included: International flights, meals or miscellaneous expenses while in Medellin, staff and guide gratuities.
Friday March 6th:
– Arrive Medellin
– Transfer to Ibis Hotel for night
– Explore Medellin
Saturday March 7th:
– 6:00am: Transfer to domestic airport
– 7:30am: Charter flight approximately 2.5 hours to Primavera/Vichada
– 10:30am: Meet afloat representatives, gather last-minutes supplies and have lunch
– 1:30pm: Depart in vehicles for approximately 3.5 hour drive
– 5:00pm: Arrive at riverside. Transfer 15 minutes by boat to Afloat Camp.
Orientation, unpacking and organizing of fishing gear, dinner and drinks
Sunday March 8th -Friday the 13th :
– 6am: Breakfast at camp, and leave for fishing
– Midday: Lunch on riverside, or at camp
– 5pm: return to camp for appetizers, drinks and dinner
Saturday March 14th :
– 6:00am: Depart for return journey to Medellin
– 6:30am: Depart using ground transportation 3.5 hour return trip to Primavera
– 11:00am: Charter flight to Medellin
– 1:30pm: Arrive Medellin. Transfer to Rio Verde Hotel. Afternoon and evening
free to explore Medellin
Sunday March 15th : Shuttle to international airport for return flights