For many years one of Latin America’s most exciting game fish was kept a secret in its heartland. In the last few years the golden dorado, or ‘river tiger’ as it is affectionately known has rocketed to the top of the hot fish list. Throughout most of its range, the dorado is caught in colored or murky waters and generally with heavy spinning tackle. Since the discovery of the Ibera Marshlands and the establishment of Pira Lodge, clear water fishing on light spinning tackle and on fly rods has become one of the world’s most sought after angling adventures. The Lodge opened in March 2000 and is the world’s first deluxe lodge to target the freshwater dorado.
Location: Pira Lodge is located in the middle of northern Argentina's 3 million acre Ibera Wetlands Preserve.
Fishing Program: The Golden Dorado, a member of the Salmon family, is a hard fighting and acrobatic fish known for its strong runs and relentless jumps. This complex and challenging fish can be found near confluences, on edges of eddies, riffles, sharp bends in the current, and close to overhanging carpets of water hyacinth. It can be fished in narrow runs, on skinny water, large fish have been hooked in the deep runs, so let your guide show you the multitude of ever-changing locations where you can make contact with these fish.
Dorado fishing requires casting large flies in high temperatures. If you think your casting abilities are not up to it or want to take a break during the day, we suggest you bring a casting or spinning rod. It's important to remember that the fly you present to a Dorado must be stripped from the moment it touches the surface of the water. Fast stripping of the fly is the key to more fish in the boat but it can be tiring after a long day, another reason to bring your casting rods.
Fishing times vary depending on month and climate. To avoid the midday heat, anglers generally leave the lodge early in the morning around 8 AM, or earlier. Guests return to the lodge midday for a swim, lunch and drinks. After Lunch and a siesta anglers head back out to fish the evening session.
Accommodations and Meals: Built in a typical Corrientes style, the lodge enjoys a spectacular panoramic view of the vast wetlands. It accommodates up to 10 guests in five large rooms, each with a private entrance, private bath, two double beds and air conditioning. A separate building, attached by covered galleries, accommodates the spacious living room, bar and dining room, each with tall doors which open up to the wide veranda.
The lodge was designed to respect the traditional local architecture while offering all of the comforts of a contemporary hotel. A fly-tying table, shaded veranda with hammocks, daily maid and laundry service and 20-meter pool are available to all guests. The lodge has a fly shop fully equipped with flies, rods, reels, lines and clothing.
Pira lodge offers wonderful cuisine based on local meats, fresh vegetables and delicious desserts paired with a wonderful selection of Argentine wines. A traditional Argentine Asado (BBQ) is held weekly where guests can sample different cuts of meat and wonderful salads. Breakfast is served al fresco during part of the season, and full cooked breakfast is available, together with fresh fruit, yogurts, home-baked bread and jams and a selection of cereals.
2018-2019 Rates: $2,900-$6,000 per person based on length of package
Included: Accommodations, meals and beverages including beer, wine and alcohol at the lodge, fishing license, guided fishing, fishing equipment.
Not Included: International and domestic airfare, accommodations/meals/transfers in Buenos Aires, transfer from Mercedes to the lodge, flies and gratuities.
Species: Freshwater Dorado
Lodge Capacity: 10 anglers
Map: Esteros de Ibera, Argentina
Time: The time in Argentina is four hours later than Pacific Standard Time (during U.S. winter).