The Limay is a mighty river with an irresistible appeal for trout anglers, especially in its middle stretch with the addition of its unsurpassable scenic beauty.
Although anglers are well aware of this, it is worthwhile repeating: the Limay is one of the mightiest rivers in Patagonia, with a 70-kilometer-long middle stretch where the best trout of the season can be caught.
Not least among its main characteristics is the one-meter-per-kilometer slope hence the swift current, providing excellent oxygen content for the fish whose weight is thus considerable.
Fishing begins bright and early, as the sun rises above the horizon and the temperature is only just beginning to go up. Anglers should check their gear is complete and close at hand (in their vest, pockets, waders, etc) as once they are in the water, trout in sight, going back for forgotten items is out of the question.
A fast current
A great outing by the river
The Middle Limay is reached from National Route 237, between Neuquén City and Bariloche. There are several public access points to the river, one of which is near Picún Leufú about 80 km from Piedra del Águila.
Other points of access are on private estancias so permission to use them is required. Two very popular spots are La Picaza (65 km from Piedra del Águila) and El Pantanito (75 km from Piedra del Águila) off route 237 between Piedra del Águila and the City of Neuquén.
Several areas along the Middle Limay River are lined with trees, especially willows, ideal spots to take a break after floating or wading.
Getting advice from experienced anglers regarding sites and gear is always wise. Nevertheless, when asked about the size of their catch, they are prone to exaggeration and fantasy as many fishing jokes prove.
Rainbow and brown trout, small-mouthed perch, Patagonian smelt, catfish and ten spotted life-bearer are some of the species you will be rewarded with after dealing with hooks, rods and reels. The water conditions and land temperature contribute to capturing good specimens, as does the angler’s skill (or not).
Experts recommend the use of 6 or 7 fast action rods, fast sinking ST line and dry flies. Irresistible, Yellow Humpy, Goodard Caddis, Sparkle Dun and Madame X are the most popular as are the ones imitating tucuras (dichroplus maculipennis).
Appropriate gear, patience and good advice play a key role in ensuring an amazing fishing outing in the Middle Limay River.
Mónica Pons Jorge González