Rio Grande and Rio Menendez, Tierra del Fuego
January – 1st week of April

rio grande

Kau Tapen is located in the middle of the Rio Grande System, just above the Menendez River, the largest spawning tributary on the Rio Grande. It is one of our favorite lodges during the months of February and March when thousands of sea trout stage in the runs up and downstream of the Menendez, and in the Menendez itself. In addition to its prime location it offers world class guides, lodging, meals, and equipment.


The success of the fishery on the Rio Grande is a modern-day fisherman’s Cinderella story. In just a decade, through access control and catch-and-release regulations, average catch rates have risen from less than a fish a day in the early ‘80s to multiple fish per day, per person, today. In the modern era, starting with the opening of Kau Tapen Lodge in the early ‘80s, the Rio Grande has become the most productive sea-run brown trout fishery in the world.  Trout numbers fluctuate each year with ocean variables, tides, water levels, and a host of other natural factors, but the Rio Menendez remains an extremely productive tributary, drawing fish to this section of the Rio Grande predictably each year.

You’ll fish most days with the wind at your back and over your shoulder for prime casting angles, while short walks and shallow wading are the norm. Single or two-handed rods are both effective. Anglers match lines, sink tips, and terminal tackle according to the water conditions.  Skate a bomber over a resting lie, or float a nymph next to a cut back for sea trout you’ve only see in your dreams.

The Rio Menendez, which hosts its own run of Sea Trout offers some of the best floating line fishing for sea runs anywhere.  Many of the Menendez fish reach 20 lbs, but very technical fishing for them is the norm.

Kau Tapen offers terrific services and hospitality, which explains why over 80% of their anglers are repeat guests.    The a la Carte menu, true five star accommodations, and excellent staff means you will be fishing in both style and comfort.

The lodge accommodates up to 10 guests (and occasionally 12) in en-suite single rooms to ensure privacy and comfort. The lodge has ten en suite single rooms; some offer a king bed, while some have one queen, and others are furnished with two doubles. A large living room opens up to peaceful vistas of the Menendez and Rio Grande valleys and includes a roaring fire and a well stocked bar.

At Kau Tapen, our kitchen comes to life through the use of fresh and regionally representative meats and produce. By combining these elements, we create delicious flavors and varied textures that harbor hidden stories and package traditions on each plate. A top-notch team of experienced national and international chefs, trained in both classic and avant-garde culinary techniques, execute our food.