Often called a spring creek for its water clarity and structure the Rio Malleo is one of Northern Patagonia’s smaller rivers. Flowing from the Chilean boarder across a broad valley at the base of Lanin volcano the scenery makes the Malleo worth the trip without fish. The pristine conditions, however, mean that going fishless is rarely a concern for Malleo anglers.
The upper section is almost completely locked behind the private fences of the San Huberto Lodge, one of the first to cater to fisherman in Northern Patagonia. A few bridges do offer access to the willow lined banks of the Malleo and a shot at its trout known for sipping dryflies all year long. Walking can be difficult along the cobbled banks and the current can make wading tricky.
The lower Malleo runs through the Mapuche reservation and offers plenty of access points for a nominal 10 peso entry fee. Further from Chile the lower section is more arid and more open providing easier casting. The lower section also has one of the larger populations of Perca, the native game fish of Patagonia.