LUGARES MAGAZINE Nro. 82
Photos: Lugares File
5 SOUTHERN RIVERS
To be more precise, these are the rivers in Chubut and Santa Cruz provinces. Five rivers that flow vigorously, swollen by melt-water, create magnificent landscapes that inspire fly fishermen as well as provide an area for trekking and other adventures.
THE GALLEGOS RIVER
This is one of the icons of the fly-fishing enthusiasts who do not flinch even in the face of the relentless icy winds of the Santa Cruz steppes. Eager to catch a monster Sea Run Brown Trout, that can easily go over 10 kilos in weight, they will face any hardship. Few rivers in the world offer as many difficulties for fishing as those in this area, of which the Grande, in Tierra del Fuego, is a good example. The Gallegos river is born in the area of Rincon de los Morros from the confluence of the Rubens and the Penitente. The fishing season is November through April; however, March, the month the brown trout swim upriver from the sea to spawn, is the best time to fish.
THE AZUL RIVER
This river crosses the best territories of the Andean District, from Rio Negro to Chubut. Along its winding course, from El Bolson to Puelo, it runs through a succession of natural attractions and others, including hop-beds for the local breweries and strawberry, raspberry and cherry plantations. Over its waters, in surroundings that feature forests and waterfalls, stretches a long suspension bridge offering access to the Roca del Tiempo (Rock of Time), the Serrucho (Saw) and the Morrudo. Afterwards, you will reach the confluence of the Azul and the Quemquemtreu and will, open-mouthed, go through the splendid valley between Loma del Medio and the Piltriquitron.
THE ORO RIVER
This one seems custom-made for adventure. Its frothing waters rage through a narrow gully between huge rocks, to later spread placidly in a valley and pour gently into Lake Pueyrredon. The boldest can reach the source of the river by four-track motorcycle on an excursion organized by the Antigua Patagonia inn in Los Antiguos. The Oro teems with rainbow trout, to the delight of fishermen.
THE DESEADO RIVER
It winds along a canyon in an almost deserted valley, from west to east in this Santa Cruz province. But, before its mouth into the Atlantic, it is invaded by the sea to a distance of around 40 km inland, producing the impressive Deseado Estuary, with a 1.5 km-wide mouth from Point Cavendish to Point Guanaco. This is a unique habitat in South America, with spectacular cliffs, volcanic rocks and blue, green and turquoise waters, populated by a rich marine fauna. For all these reasons, excursions to this Natural Reserve are "the order of the day". Take binoculars with you.
THE PINTURAS RIVER
Another incredible Santa Cruz river, showing all its riches from its very source on the Buenos Aires Lake plateau, surrounded by almost virgin areas. We say almost, because the ancient occupants of the area left their handprints on the rock walls, a 9,000-year-old graffiti that is today a prime attraction. No traveler can resist the temptation of a trip to the famous "Cueva de las Manos" (Cave of the Handprints), hidden in a steep canyon on the Pinturas. This visit may be made easily from November through April; during the rest of the year you should check beforehand in the Casa de Santa Cruz (Santa Cruz Province Delegation).