Six fishing days
January, February, March, November, December
Argentina’s Lake Strobel (Jurassic Lake) is among the most truly magnificent angling destinations on earth— not just for its insanely large resident rainbow trout, but also for a surreal natural environment you’re unlikely to experience anywhere else. The father/son team of Roberto and Luciano Alba have poured a lifetime of angling passion into creating an experience at Estancia Laguna Verde that is as genuinely special as the fishing.
Strobel is swarming with scuds, tiny arthropod crustaceans that consistently produce clouds of food for hungry trout— an incubator for growing mutant rainbows. Gorging on the protein-rich scuds and with no predators or competition from other fish, Strobel Lake’s rainbows grow to impossibly large sizes.
To reach ELV, you’ll take an overnight flight to Buenos Aires from any number of U.S. hubs. Once you clear customs in B.A., a Trek partner representative will be waiting to facilitate your transfer to the city’s domestic airport.
The flight to El Calafate is just under three hours. When possible, we recommend overnighting in El Calafate to rest up and prepare for the fishing portion of your adventure.
A member of the ELV team will meet you in El Calafate and accompany you for a fascinating drive to the lodge. Guanacos (a close relative of the llama) and rheas (South America’s ostrich) are likely to be encountered as you traverse the countryside. Large male guanacos often perch on the high ground above a group of smaller animals, in search of hungry pumas.
Upon arrival at ELV, you’ll be warmly greeted by lodge staff, shown your room and you’ll get ready to chase monster ‘bows.
Descending into the Strobel basin through piles of white rock for the first time feels about as close to a lunar expedition as you’re likely to experience on earth. The contrast of the lake’s expanse of vivid blue water against pale rock formations is stunning, and the angling experience of your life lies just beyond the shoreline.
ELV provides exclusive access to nearly nine linear miles of Strobel, including several bays that offer protection from Patagonia’s notorious winds. A team of highly skilled and hospitable guides cater to anglers of all skill levels, ensuring everyone has shots at big fish, and lots of them.
Ten-pound fish are common here and fish in the 15-20 pound (and beyond) are frequently landed. These fish display an array of striking colors, with “chromers” providing a particular fierce, drag-screaming fight.
The Strobel ‘bows respond to a variety of presentations, including large dry flies such as mouses and Chernobyl ants, as well as streamers and nymphs. With excellent water clarity, sight casting is the standard on Strobel, providing the incomparable thrill of anticipating the take.
For more adventurous anglers, ELV’s river program provides a test of both fitness and technical casting in rugged conditions. Walking and stalking along the boulder-lined river provides the opportunity to sight cast to fish in clear pools or more aggressive trout lurking in the swift current.
As you make your way close to the mouth of the river, newly migrating fish will often aggressively attack your fly and run toward the lake, requiring a quick decision to either tighten your drag or take chase downstream.
Arriving at the estancia, you will quickly realize why the place has such a sterling reputation. The guides and lodge staff are eager to connect and by the trip’s end you’ll have many new friends to ease the sweet sorrow of departure.
The lodge features a both single and double rooms, each of which is well appointed and include private bathrooms. The lodge’s great room comprises a well-stocked bar, a spacious dining room and an inviting sitting area with a fireplace.
The meals at ELV are exceptional, providing a collection of locally inspired gourmet dishes. Each group will enjoy an asado night, as well as tastings of Argentinian wines from the Alba’s expansive wine collection.
Bonding through a shared experience is one of the reasons Thoreau wrote “many men fish their entire lives without realizing it’s not fish they’re after.” But if you’re after really big rainbows and an otherworldly fishing experience, you absolutely have to visit Estancia Laguna Verde.
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