Rio Miel,

 Rio Cocorna Sur,

 Rio Nare

Magdalena Medio

Colombia

 

2015

click photo for map          

Picuda's: 1 TWAT's: 0

 
We decided to target two new species; the Picuda (Salminus Affinis) and the Umbee (Caquetaia Umbrifera). To be frank, if you want pictures you will have to look elsewhere on the web, as we failed, or rather the weather failed us. Just one of those years where the weather didn't follow climatic norms. It happens, its happened to us before, it will happen again. We will just have to return one day. Colombia itself was amazing, we were dumbfounded by it. It was just so much more developed and 'civilized' than we expected, and seemed perfectly safe. The scenery was fantastic, everyone was very courteous, and the food and accommodations were great.
Our guide Rafael Valderrama (Aventura 4*4 Colombia) could not have been more attentive and deserves a wholehearted recommendation from us. 
   
We arrived at Medellin, a brand new airport, via Bogata, another brand new airport, with Avianca on brand new Airbus aircraft. Rafael picked us up in a Land cruiser with all the off-road gadgets that you could wish for and made our way to Doradal on wonderful smooth tarmac. Our first stop for refreshments at a roadside eatery that would put most such establishments in the UK to shame, breathtaking views, fresh scratch cooked food and spotlessly clean. And our first encounter with the myriads of fruit that the Colombians consume in vast quantities as juice smoothies with every meal.
   
We stopped briefly at the Rio Claro, a private nature reserve. A gin clear river running through a deep gorge, much like the rivers we hoped that we would fish.
   
First accommodations at a rather superior 'Truck Stop' just outside of Doradal, Campo Verde, again great food, good service, and spotlessly clean.
   
We then moved on to a small town San Miguel on the bank of the Rio Miel. A small hotel, and a restaurant just around the corner. We now felt so safe in Colombia that we just went off on our own to find a bar for some cold refreshments
   
Sadly we failed to catch  anything, the river was a tad dirty from overnight rains, though one of our boatmen did land a small Picuda from a tributary, the Mazon which we went up as it seemed to be clearer than the Miel.
   
We returned to Doradal and spent the next couple of days travelling off-road to Estacion Cocorna to fish the Rio Cocorna Sur
   
Whilst the Miel was a beautiful river, the Cocorna was even more so, at the height of our navigation was a most picturesque cascade down a verdant gorge. Some fish were caught, principally by our guide Rafael, who apparently fed up with our ineptitude got his fly rod out and captured a number of 'Dourada' a very pretty Brycon, and a small Picuda.


   
Then the overnight rains came again, reports from both the Miel and Cocorna were of dark brown unfishable waters. Rafael came to the rescue, the owners of the Campo Verde where we were staying also owned the neighboring ranch - and they had a stocked lake that we could fish! We did catch some fish - Dourada's and were joined by a couple of charming lads from the farm who were also out fishing.
   
Next we moved north to the Rio Nare, we knew that the river was 'dirty' after the rains, but reports were that it appeared to be clearing. So after a few hours by road crossing the Magdalena by bridge and then by ferry to Puerto La Sierra we got to the start of the Rio Nare
   
   
The Rio Nare was a larger river, and like the Miel and Cocorna it rested in a steep gorge. Accommodations were at the Reserve Rio Nare, a lodge some miles up river.
 
   
Sadly, instead of clearing we had some overnight thunderstorms that turned the river to an unfishable torrent of dirty water and flotsam, so instead of some fishy photo's, here are some butterflies.
   
We abandoned the Rio Nare, sitting in a deep gorge in 100F for a couple of days in the hope that the river would clear was not an option, so we went sightseeing instead and set off towards Guatape, via a pretty village of Narices and then San Rafael..
   
Guatape and the monolith of El Penol. Spectacular.
   
And our hotel on the shore of Guatape Lake was very pretty . The lake is stocked with Smallmouth Bass, so that provided some sport.
   
Some culture to finish the trip. A chance to see the inaugural exhibition of Fernando Botero's  'El Circo' in Medellin
   
 

A great trip, despite our hapless efforts to catch fish. We shall return to Colombia one day to make amends! We found Colombia to be very friendly, clean, scenic, and crammed with fishable rivers. Many thanks again to out host Rafael Valderrama (Aventura 4*4 Colombia).

 

 

 

 

 
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