TSIMANE, BOLIVIA - GOLDEN DORADO FISHING

 

TSIMANE, BOLIVIA - GOLDEN DORADO FISHING

Here at Yellow Dog, we can tell you from first-hand experience that this is one of the most incredible, unique, one-of-a-kind fishing trips in existence. Anywhere in the world. With a two-lodge, multi-river infrastructure, guests can experience the world’s finest Golden Dorado fishing in small, intimate waters that usually run as clear as any trout stream found throughout the Western U.S. The Golden Dorado - a powerful and beautiful species indigenous to this region - can be targeted and caught on the fly all throughout Tsimane’s area of operation. The small, clear rivers found throughout this area are inhabited by two different types of Dorado and several other species of fish from the Amazon basin, including the Amazon pacu and the yatorana (pound for pound, among the strongest fresh-water species in all of South America). The remote nature of the fishing in this area, the exotic fish, bird and wildlife species that live here, and the overwhelming beauty of the region all combine to create an incredible angling and travel experience that is without a doubt one of the most interesting and unique in the entire world of destination fly fishing.

Typical Length of Stay

The standard package at Tsimane is 8 nights and 6.5 days of fishing. Contact Yellow Dog for specific trip dates and availability.

Accommodations and Lodging

Tsimane LodgeEven in one of the most remote places in the world, guests at Tsimane will enjoy each night in comfort and style. The week-long Tsimane experience is split between two separate lodges – the Asunta Lodge and the Pluma Lodge – located on two totally different rivers. Each lodge features spacious double guest cabins, each constructed with local hardwoods. All of the cabins have comfortable beds, private bathrooms with hot water, large ceiling fans, and electric lights. There is also a main dinning room area, lounge and bar area, and several decks for relaxing. And even in the middle of the Bolivian jungle, there is high-speed Wi-Fi satellite internet and a satellite phone available for guest use. Generators at both lodges provide full electric power each morning, evening, and night, and each cabin has 220-volt plugs to charge batteries and use small electric appliances if necessary.
(Be sure to bring an electrical adaptor for all electronics).

New for the 2013 fishing season is an on-river camping program that is perfect for more adventurous anglers. These camping excursions can be booked as stand-alone trips, or booked as add-ons to a standard lodge package. This is a program that allows access to the most remote areas of the park to fish untouched waters. All camping will be on the river, and all tents, air mattresses and equipment is provided. Camp locations and packages will depend on the time of the year and local water and weather conditions. Rates and inclusions are listed below.

Food and Beverages

Each night guests will enjoy delicious international cuisine, fresh meats and vegetables, and great Argentine wines. Breakfast is cooked to order each morning, and lunches are packed for the day on the water and served streamside each afternoon. All beer, wine and liquor is included in your lodge package. Overall, the food at the lodge is delicious, and the lodge staff will be happy to accommodate any special requests and dietary requirements.

Fishing Information

Bolivian Golden DoradoA destination that is relatively new on the international scene, many are calling the Tsimane offerings the ultimate freshwater fly fishing experience for the adventurous angler. Rather than a new river in an already discovered location, or a new section of flats in an already-developed fishing area, Tsimane instead has opened a totally new and different door with regard to exotic fly fishing destinations. What Tsimane offers is fly fishing for huge Golden Dorado in small, clear, freestone rivers - something that has to be experienced to be truly appreciated. Unusual? One comparative analogy that we like is the image of fishing for baby tarpon on the Three Dollar Bridge section of the Madison River in Montana. Instead of mayflies in the air, however, there are thousands and thousands of huge, colorful butterflies fluttering around the river and crawling along the rocky banks and gravel bars.


Even though the Dorado in Tsimane's area waters are plentiful, the fishing in these rivers represents presents a number of challenges (as well as opportunities) for the angler. And although Golden Dorado are voracious, savage hunters, they are not necessarily easy to catch. As with most fishing situations, the element of surprise is an advantage that anglers will want to take full advantage of. These fish are almost always easily put down if spooked, so every pool and run must be carefully approached, well-planned, and well fished. Working closely with your guide will maximize each opportunity. In most situations, Dorado are caught when they are leisurely feeding and unaware of an angler's presence. That said, their "eats" and their attacks can be very swift and sudden, so accurate casts and timing become important variables. Being able to shoot 40 to 60 feet of line, minimize false casts, and deliver a large fly in an accurate and delicate manner is a huge advantage when fishing this area. Like many saltwater situations, a powerful and accurate double-haul certainly helps.

The best flies for fishing Dorado on the rivers of this region are usually larger than what most anglers are familiar with. And if you have never cast large, heavy Dorado flies, then you may find it difficult to make accurate casts quickly and with the right amount of distance. You're traveling a long way to fish these waters, so we highly encourage you to practice before you go, familiarize yourself with you equipment, and develop a comfort level for casting large flies. Since all of the species caught in these waters have hard, bony heads and mouths, a hard and fast strip-strike (with the rod tip down and a lot of pressure on the fish) is required for a proper hook set. If you have done a lot of saltwater fishing (especially tarpon fishing) then you'll be comfortable with this technique. Those that are used to setting a hook by raising the tip of a rod (as with trout) will most likely miss or lose several fish before becoming comfortable with setting and hooking Dorado!

Boats and Equipment

The inaccessible, remote nature of these rivers makes it virtually impossible to utilize traditional put-in and take-out points with boats, so standard watercraft such as jet boats, john boats and drift boats are simply not an option. In order to move around and fish upstream waters, Tsimane has designed their boats based on the simple and proven designs of the area canoes favored by the natives. Outfitted with small outboard engines, these wooden, canoe-style, 28’ boats are comfortable and extremely practical for fishing the local waters. Typically, two boatmen will pole the craft up and downriver, utilizing a small motor for running in deeper sections. There are two seats in the canoes for guests and plenty of room for gear and equipment. Although some fishing can be done from the boats in slower, deeper waters, most fishing is done while wading in the river or fishing from the banks and gravel bars. It is recommended that anglers bring all of their own equipment to the lodge, including back-up rods and fly lines, and felt-soled wading boots outfitted with carbide-tipped studs.

Non-Angling Activities and Options

Tsimane operates in a remote, fishing-focused destination. It is not the ideal location for non-anglers, and is better-suited to those who are there to fish.

How To Get There

Tsimane River LunchGuests will fly to the Bolivian city of Santa Cruz (VVI) on an international flight. Upon arrival in Santa Cruz, guests will be met by a member of the Tsimane team at the airport and transferred to a 5-Star hotel for their first night in country. There, guests will settle into their room and enjoy the amenities of the one of the best hotels in Bolivia. The Tsimane team member will further explain the details of the trip, and the following morning guests will take a charter flight to Tsimane’s Asunta Lodge – a flight of approximately two hours.

Upon arrival at the lodge’s jungle airstrip, anglers will be met by the guides, shown to the lodge, and will then be able to fish the home pool that first afternoon. Mid-week, guests will transfer from the Asunta Lodge on the Secure River to the Pluma Lodge on the Pluma River.

Arrival and Departure Details / Times

The typical week at the lodge is a Saturday to Saturday. You will want to arrive into Santa Cruz (VVI) the day or evening before, where you will overnight in the city, and depart for the lodge the following morning.

2013 Fishing Pakage Rates

Tsimane's Asunta and Pluma Lodge Program
All prices are per person. The only package available for Tsimane’s standard two-location lodge package is the 10 night - 6.5 days of fishing. Please call Yellow Dog for availability.

10 nights / 6.5 fishing days --------------------------------------------------------------------- $7,600
(double occupancy)
10 nights / 6.5 fishing days --------------------------------------------------------------------- $11,000
(single occupancy)

*NEW* EXCLUSIVE ON-RIVER CAMPING PROGRAM (Aguas Negras and Pluma Camps)
New for the 2013 season, Tsimane will be offering fixed camp packages along with the standard lodge packages at their Asunta and Pluma Lodges. These on-river camp packages can be booked as stand-along trip, or as add-on trips to go along with the standard lodge-based package. All rates and details are below. Please call Yellow Dog for details.

7 nights / 4 fishing days ------------------------------------------------------------------------- $5,000
(double occupancy)
7 nights / 4 fishing days ------------------------------------------------------------------------- $9,000
(single occupancy)
7 nights / 4 fishing days ------------------------------------------------------------------------- $4,500
*As extension / add-on to the standard Tsimane Lodge program
(double occupancy)

* Remember that Yellow Dog's services are completely free! When you book a trip with Yellow Dog, you never pay more than when you book directly with the lodge or outfitter.

What's Included

Tsimane's Asunta and Pluma Lodge Program

  • In-country flights and all transfers between the Santa Cruz Airport and the lodges
  • Lodging in both locations and in Santa Cruz in a double occupancy room
  • All meals while at the Asunta and Pluma Lodges
  • The best Argentine wines, soft drinks, and all alcoholic beverages at the Asunta and Pluma Lodges
  • All daily guided fishing (two anglers per boat)
  • Laundry services at both lodges
  • Internet and Wi-Fi access

Tsimane's Aguas Negras and Pluma Camps

  • Transfers between the Santa Cruz Airport and the lodge / camp locations
  • Lodging in a double occupancy room in Santa Cruz for one night at arrival and one night at departure date in 5-star hotel
  • All meals while on the river and camping
  • The best Argentine wines, soft drinks, and all alcoholic beverages
  • All guided fishing (two anglers per boat)

What's Not Included

Tsimane's Asunta and Pluma Lodge Program

  • International airfare to Santa Cruz, Bolivia (VVI)
  • Rods, reels, flies and terminal tackle (the lodge has a basic and at times limited selection of rods, reels, and flies)
  • Gratuities for guides and lodge staff
  • Meals, taxis, personal expenses and bar tab in Santa Cruz
  • Bolivian entry Visa and Bolivian departure taxes

Tsimane's Aguas Negras and Pluma Camps

  • International airfare to Santa Cruz, Bolivia
  • Rods, reels, flies and terminal tackle
  • Gratuities for guides and lodge staff
  • Meals, bar tab and incidentals in Santa Cruz
  • Bolivian entry Visa and Bolivian departure taxes

Travel Arrangements

Yellow Dog has a full in-house travel and reservations system, and can assist with airline tickets, hotels, transfers, and all travel logistics for every destination that we offer. Contact us at 888-777-5060 or info@yellowdogflyfishing.com for more details on airfare ticketing, travel services and trip insurance.

Other Information - Health and Medical Information

All visitors to Bolivia should have all standard shots as well as Yellow Fever Vaccination up-to-date and current. You will want to travel with your vaccination card that proves this. We also ask that you notify us if you have any special medical conditions that the lodge needs to be aware of. Please remember to bring all your personal medications with you, and be sure that they are well-labeled in their original bottles. Eastern Bolivia is considered a Malarial, Leishmaniasis and Dengue Fever endemic area. The risk for infection is most prevalent in the low land areas during the rainy season, from December to April. Although this is neither the camp’s location nor their standard fishing season, cases have been reported in nearby Santa Cruz city. Precautions to be taken against these diseases include wearing long-sleeve shirts and pants at all times, as well as using insect repellent while staying in the city. Be sure to cover up and take precautions at all times!

On a final note, this is a trip that is best-suited for anglers that are in good shape and able to walk, wade and move.

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