Agua Negra Lodge: 15°58’31.89″S 66°18’26.96″W
Pluma Lodge: 16° 4’24.61″S 66°17’0.49″W
Sécure Lodge: 15°49’54.49″S 66°26’13.81″W
Trip Questionnaire: Please click on the link below. This will take you an electronic questionnaire form that we ask you to complete and submit to The Fly Shop. Please be sure to click the “Submit” button at the end of the form. The information provided will help us — and the outfitter best coordinate your trip.
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Day 0: – Arrive in Santa Cruz, Bolivia
Anglers will arrive Santa Cruz Bolivia where a lodge representative will be waiting for you in Viru Viru International Airport (VVI) and transfer you from the airport to the Los Tajibos Hotel (included in the angling package – a 20-minute drive).
Day 1: – Depart Santa Cruz for lodge
Breakfast at the hotel. Tsimane’s representative will meet the group and head to the local airport. You will then board the private charter flight (Pilatus PC-12) and fly to the lodge’s landing strip (approximately 1 hour and 1.5 hours). Upon landing they will be met by a member of the Tsimane staff and taken to your lodge.
After settling into the lodge and preparing gear with the guides, there will be a brief explanation of the fishing week and the fishing beats rotation. There is time in the afternoon for a half day of fishing at the home pools and nearby areas.
Days 2 to 7:
Each day, teams of two anglers will fish the various beats in the area. In addition, depending on the fishing, weather and river conditions, groups of 2 anglers at a time will have the option of an over-night out-camp. This allows for extended fishing times and access to some of the most untouched, headwater sections of the stream.
Typical fishing day:
Early in the morning, groups of two anglers will separate and depart for different fishing beats. It is a full day of fishing, with lunch on the fly, finally returning to the lodge in the evening for appetizers, cocktails, and a well-prepared meal.
In the morning, guests will pack up and transfer back to the Indian Community where you will meet your charter flight back to Santa Cruz. In Santa Cruz you will be met by a member of the Tsimane staff who will take you to Los Tajibos Hotel to overnight (included in package).
Day 9: Depart Santa Cruz, Bolivia“
After breakfast and according to your flight departure time out of Santa Cruz, the lodge host will pick you up and transfer you to the International Airport to begin your journey home.
Luggage Weight Limit is 25 kilos (55 lbs.). The lodge has scheduled one charter plane for each 4-person group. Any unnecessary items that you won’t use in the camp can be stored with the hotel concierge and city host and they will keep it safe until you come back to Santa Cruz. Please restrain bringing unnecessary weight.
THERE IS DAILY LAUNDRY SERVICE @ ALL THE LODGES
Untamed Angling Bolivia Office: Marcelo Perez
Cañada Strongest 120 apt. 43
Santa Cruz de la Sierra | Bolivia
Office: +591 3 3449524 | Cell: +591 750 77762
Skype: marcelountamed | Email: email@example.com
Santa Cruz Host (Ground Transfers): Zoltan Loecsey
Zoltan’s Mobile: 011 591 69101709 | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Alfredo Lafuente (Regional Sales Manager)
Skype: alfredo.lafuente.h | WhatsApp: (+54) 911 5018 9212
www.untamedangling.com | Email: email@example.com
Each lodge has Wi-Fi. WhatsApp, Messenger and FaceTime are free and work well if you need to call home. There is a satellite phone at each lodge also and guests are able to make calls at $3/minute.
United States Consular Agency, Santa Cruz, Bolivia
Avenida Roque Aguilera #146 (3er Anillo), Santa Cruz, Bolivia
Telephone: 591-3-351-3477 / 351-3479
Emergency after-hours telephone: 591-715-33713 | Facsimile: 591-3-351-3478
The Fly Shop®
800-669-3474 | 530-222-3555 | firstname.lastname@example.org
ENTRY REQUIREMENTS FOR BOLIVIA
- Valid U.S. passport with at least six months validity remaining.
- International Certificate of Yellow Fever Vaccination.
- With a visitor visa, you may stay 30 days per trip, not to exceed 90 days per year. A Bolivian visitor visa costs $160 US and can be paid in U.S. or local currency upon arrival.
- Visitors must show proof of a round-trip ticket or confirmation of plans to depart Bolivia.
- Visitors must provide proof of lodging in Bolivia including the address of the accommodation. If you are staying with friends or family, authorities may require a letter of invitation from the host.
- There are currently NO COVID-19 entry requirements for Bolivia.
- Travelers do not need a COVID-19 test before traveling to Bolivia.
- Travelers do no need proof of COVID-19 vaccination before traveling to Bolivia.
- Travelers Returning to the United States don’t need a COVID-19 Test to return to the United States.
IMPORTANT – WE STRONGLY RECOMMEND YOU TO APPLY FOR YOUR VISA IN THE SANTA CRUZ INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT (VVI) UPON YOUR ARRIVAL.
- A passport valid for at least six months from the date of proposed entry into Bolivia and two open passport pages.
- Download the PDF attached in the email (sworn form) and fill it out with your personal info:
For Qué lugar le gustaría visitar? / Which place would you like to visit?
(Please use this address:) San Ignacio de Mojos, Albergue Tsimane, Departamento del Beni, S/N
- Complete and print the sworn form; bring the printed sworn form with you.
- Print the confirmation letter (which will be provided by Untamed Angling) and bring it with you.
- You will have to pay USD $160 (dollars one hundred and sixty) in cash, with new bills or bills without any tears or marks, as Bolivia does not accept tattered bills. This payment is made to the migration officer when you’re applying for the visa. The Visa is valid for 10 years.
IMPORTANT – Once you are in customs, please go to the far left, to the VISA booth, to apply for your VISA. The approval process takes 15 – 20 minutes and Untamed Angling will provide you all the assistance you need to do it easily.
IMPORTANT – PLEASE HAVE MULTIPLE PRINTED COPIES OF ALL YOUR DOCUMENTS including: passport picture page, hotel voucher provided by Untamed Angling, and Bolivian Tourist Visa
Special Note on Past Bolivian Visas:
If your current passport has a Bolivia Tourist Visa pasted onto one of the pages and the visa is valid (10 years) then you do not need to purchase a new visa. If you have a valid Bolivian visa in an expired passport, you should bring both the old passport with the visa and your new passport. However, we highly recommend bringing the completed visa application, confirmation letter from Untamed Angling, and $160 cash just in case, Bolivian Immigrations does not accept the valid visa in your expired passport. The visa is valid for 10 years but we recommend you bring everything to be on the safe side. If the old visa is accepted, no you are good to go. If immigration does not accept the valid visa in your expired passport, you will have the necessary documents to secure a new visa.
IMPORTANT Untamed Angling will need a scan (jpeg or pdf) of the picture page of your passport. This will be needed for Untamed Angling to create a hotel voucher for you which is needed for Customs processing. Please email your scanned picture page to our Travel Coordinator Cheryl Burns at email: email@example.com Thank you…
We strongly recommend securing insurance that covers medical contingencies while abroad and cancel for any reason travel insurance.
* Please be prepared to pay a $25 Bolivian Departure Tax in cash at the airport after securing your boarding pass (new bills, no tears, no marks – fresh, clean bills). It is possible the Bolivian Departure Tax was included in your ticket cost (the airline attendant will let you know.)
Be Mentally Prepared: travel to the Bolivian wilderness can present problems. Weather can cause flight delays in and out of the camps and possible missed connections, imposing additional costs or delay in your return home. This is beyond our control and realm of responsibility. Please accommodate this possibility in your planning and your state of mind. The key is to be open-minded and tolerant, knowing that some things are done in a different manner in Bolivia.
Native Community Tax: The Tipnis Natives (where Tsimane is located) have formed a board to protect their interests moving forward. This board includes representatives from all 22 Secure River Communities, as well as all the communities in State of Beni. The leaders of the association have made the decision to implement a significant user tax on all visiting anglers. The funds from the tax will primarily be used for social projects, infrastructure development, transportation, and medical and education projects.
The tax will be $550 per person per week. This fee represents an important step in the continuing effort to protect our ability to continue to share this amazing and unique part of the world.
National Park Entrance Fee: In addition to the Native Community Tax, anglers fishing any of the Tsimane Lodges will be required to pay a National Park Entry Fee of $120 per person, payable in (Cash $USD) before departure from Santa Cruz to the lodge(s).
The total cost for these two fees will be $670 USD.
IMPORTANT: These fees collected by The Fly Shop before your arrival to Bolivia. They will be listed on your invoice with the other deposits.
Cash in Bolivia: Please be aware that only BRAND NEW, perfect $100 bills will be accepted. Old money cannot be exchanged in Bolivia. Ask your bank for clean, crisp, NEW bills! They will accommodate your request with no issue.
An International Certificate of Yellow Fever Vaccination is required for entry into Bolivia.
Eastern Bolivia is considered a Dengue Fever influenced area. This illness is dangerous in the low land areas and during the rainy season from December to April. Even though this is not our fishing area or season, there have been many cases in the city of Santa Cruz. To avoid this illness, we recommend guests to always wear long sleeve shirt and pants and use insect repellent in this city.
Eastern Bolivia is considered a Leishmaniosis influenced area. The disease is carried by infected sand flies – please note not all sand flies are carriers – and can cause open sores in addition to other health complications. Presently there is not a preventive inoculation or medications such as what we see with Malaria and no early detection method available. That said, like many worldwide health issues, the best method of addressing this issue is to be aware and prepare.
In a proactive effort, Untamed Angling has hired tropical disease specialists to consult for the company and develop a lodge staff policy and manual as well as assisting in angler education. The ultimate goal here is a two front attack to minimalize risk and maximize awareness of anyone visiting Bolivia.
When outside, wear long-sleeved shirts, long pants, and socks. Tuck your shirt into your pants.
Apply insect repellent on uncovered skin and under the ends of sleeves and pant legs. Follow the instructions on the label of the repellent. The most effective repellents are those that contain the chemical DEET (N, N-diethylmetatoluamide). The concentration of DEET varies among repellents. Repellents with DEET concentrations of 25%-35% are quite effective, and the effect should last about 4 hours. Reapply every 4 hours when outside. Lower concentrations should be used for children (no more than 10% DEET). Spray clothing with permethrin-containing insecticides. The insecticide should be reapplied every five days.
We strongly recommend you visit your doctor or county health department before departing for Bolivia.
This jungle is surprisingly friendly. No-see-ums, some mosquitoes and biting flies will make their presence known. As for the rest of the creepy crawlies – this is a virgin rainforest where all kind of spiders and strange insects live. We recommend guest not to go deep into the Jungle, pass through dense vegetation, over down logs or through fallen leaves, etc.
All of our buildings are constantly fumigated to avoid surprises and all beds have mosquito nets covering them. We strongly recommend wearing long sleeve shirts and long pants during your fishing week. The best way to protect yourself from bugs and no see ums is by wearing insect repellent. Use it all day long and while at the lodge in open areas. We suggest washing your clothes in Permethrin prior to traveling.
We strongly suggest not drinking water from the tap in any Bolivian City or at the lodge. Mineral water or purified water will be always available. Please bring a reusable water bottle with you.
The highland jungles of Bolivia during the fishing season are hot and humid. It’s essential that you keep well hydrated as well as replace electrolytes that you sweat out each day to keep you from cramping. We strongly suggest that you purchase individual packets of Gatorade Zero, EmergenC, or Liquid IV to mix in your reusable water bottle. Drink at least two water bottles of this elixir every day, one in the morning and one at lunch.
ELECTRICITY AT THE LODGES
We ask all guests to please consider the environment and economy of our operation in reducing electrical consumption by not leaving electrical items on when not in use. Please turn the lights out when not in use. Tsimane Lodge creates electricity through generators and solar panels. We typically run the generators in the morning from 6:00 am to 10:00 am, and 5:00 pm until midnight. The electrical current is 220 Volts, 50 Cycles. Plugs: Type A (two flat, identical sized, paralleled flat prongs) & C (two round parallel prongs)
There is a battery system that keeps one plug near the bed alive all night. This powers the fan and the bathroom light going, as well as providing power for CPAP machines.
Gratuities are not included in the cost and are a personal matter, based on the services rendered.
Guides and staff work hard to provide you with the best experience during your trip. Gratuities are discretionary and show your appreciation with the services provided. They are much appreciated by all!!
Lodge staff will provide guidelines and suggestions for tipping and provide envelopes. A typical weekly gratuity for guides and staff is around 10% of the package price, per person per week.
We suggest splitting tips in two envelopes, one for guides and the other for staff. Give one to the fishing manager and he will distribute to the guides. Give the second envelope to your host who will distribute them among the staff. Please plan to pay all gratuities in $USD cash at the end of the week.
The official currency is the Bolivian Peso, and the exchange rate usually fluctuates at around 7 pesos to 1 $US Dollar. Check with the Untamed Angling transfer agent in Santa Cruz upon arrival for up-to-date currency conversion rates (or check on-line, there are a lot of easy and free web-portals or even mobile smartphone apps for determining current exchange rates). The US dollar is widely accepted throughout Bolivia. Most businesses will exchange pesos in change when dollars are paid. Banks and Hotels will generally change your money for you. It is a good idea to break your change into smaller bills for taxis, tips, etc. It is very difficult to exchange traveler’s checks in Bolivia, so we do not recommend bringing them. Visa and Mastercard are widely accepted in many businesses in the larger towns and cities, but will not work in the remote jungle lodges so bring cash for gratuities and any purchases in camp. Always remember to notify your bank and credit card company that you will be traveling outside of your home company…BEFORE you depart.
The attraction of Tsimane and the magnificent Dorado that roam its waters is more than just great fishing.
Besides the Dorado (the king of the river) there are other species to pursue, such as Pacu (our jungle freshwater permit) and Yatoranas. Together these species make a trio very difficult to match in warm freshwater fly fishing. The rivers we fish are very similar to freestone trout rivers with similar looking pools, runs, pocket water, and riffles. If you are a good and pragmatic trout angler, you will feel comfortable reading and fishing these rivers.
Fishing in these rivers, regardless of the huge populations of fish, represents several challenges for the angler. These fish can be spooky in such small and clear water and every pool and run must be thought-out and a plan developed with your guide before casting a fly into it. Dorado are very fast swimmers, super aggressive and flies must be placed not only with accuracy but also at the right time. Anglers who are able to shoot 60 feet of line with one or two false casts will have a big advantage. Being able to double haul in order to generate line speed will be a huge advantage. The flies we use are generally quite large and most anglers find it difficult to cast them accurately, with distance – in a hurry. We encourage guests to practice in order to get familiar with their equipment, flies and lines.
It’s also worth noting that it is important to go light, carrying what you need in your shirt and pants pockets; a few flies, a spool of mono and wire is all you need with pliers on your waist and nothing else. Leave the rest of the gear in the boat, which will always be located close by in case you need something out of your kit.
Most of the fishing at Tsimane is done by wading in the river or fishing from the bank. The river structure varies tremendously, from sandy and small gravel beaches to sharp volcanic rock shoals transitioning through all kind of freestones and boulders. There is a lot of walking, so we recommend guests to at least do some walking/running the weeks prior to their visit to prepare and get in shape.
We strongly recommend our guests to wade behind their guides and to keep their eyes open. Stingrays are rare, but present in these waters and an unfortunate misstep can result in an extremely painful ordeal. For protection, stingray guards are available, or you can bring your own, but most anglers go without. Together with a sturdy wading boot, keeping your eyes open and moving slowly you should experience no problems. It is very important to listen to your guide, follow behind him and his experienced and sharp eyes.
We don’t know of a more badass freshwater gamefish than the golden dorado. Dorado are meaner than a junkyard dog, landing a big one is a feat in itself, and if you turn your back on one for a second while posing for a hero shot, they will take a chunk of flesh out you. Yeah, they are belligerent and nasty — everything we like in a fish that eats 8-inch streamers, each other, and preys on mega-sized baitfish.
No place we know of, anywhere in the world is better to fish for Dorado than Tsimane, located in the jungles of Bolivia where the Andes meet the Amazon. Imagine wading in a clear, freestone mountain stream that looks like the McCloud River in NorCal, casting a floating line and streamer to a brilliantly colored golden-reflective predator with razor-sharp teeth and strip setting into 20 pounds of pure muscle that just swam out from behind a boulder to destroy your fly. All hell breaks loose as the golden missile rockets into the air, gills rattling, before he turns his head down towards the rapids and starts a crazed, reel-sizzling run… That’s why you flew 5,000 miles to the remote jungle of Bolivia! Now you’ve got el tigre by the tail and you better have the right gear if you want any chance to land him!
The following fly fishing equipment is what you need to effectively fish for Dorado at Tsimane:
A 9-foot 8wt is the go-to rod for golden dorado in Bolivia. Fast action saltwater fly rods are preferred, so that you have the power to deliver the biggest streamers across river. Some anglers prefer a 9wt in order to get a little more power and distance, and to be prepared in case they hook into a jumbo model fish that you know is swimming around out there.
- Scott Sector or Wave
- Sage Salt HD
- Winston AIR Saltwater
You’ll need a quality saltwater fly reel to balance your rod, with a smooth and sealed disk drag, machined from bar stock aluminum, with an easy to adjust and large drag knob.
- Hatch Iconic
- Abel SDS
- Nautilus NV-G
- Galvin Grip or Torque (good mid-price alternatives)
- 8-braid Poly Backing is rated at 68-pound test and the best!
The proper fly lines are critical at Tsimane, as this is what will deliver the 7-inch streamer to your target and ultimately connect you to a trophy Dorado.
- Scientific Anglers Jungle Titan Floating Line (Mandatory)
- Scientific Anglers Sonar Titan Jungle Clear Tip Line
40lbs fluorocarbon is the go to leader material. You may want a spool of 30lbs for low water conditions and spooky fish. The guides will build you a custom leader roughly 8ft long with about 6 feet of 40lbs fluro and adding 2 feet of 40lbs braided wire leader. You don’t need tapered leaders.
All the fish we catch in Tsimane are heavily armed with sharp teeth and braided wire leader is necessary, where you tie on the fly. Bring 2 spools of 40 pound knottable wire from Scientific Anglers or Rio. Maybe 1 spool of 30lbs wire as well, for low clear water. You will want to find wire tippets in grey or camouflage color, not shiny silver. Pre-tied Leaders (for barracuda or pike) are not recommended.
Over the years we have learned that most of our guests under-estimate the amount of wire tippet they will go through during a week of fishing in Tsimane’s waters. One spool of tippet is rarely enough.
Finally, you will want a box of large streamers (4-8 inches), with a few top-water flies thrown in, tied on barbless saltwater hooks 2/0 to 4/0. The Fly Shop® has assembled a complete selection of flies, specifically for Tsimane — the exact flies we fish at Tsimane. The fly selection includes a saltwater streamer box (#19335 for $299.95 – 30 flies total). And if you end up not using all the flies, you can return unused flies to us for a full store credit.
- Andino Deceiver (Black/Purple) (3)
- Andino Deceiver (Black/Orange) (3)
- Andino Deceiver (Black/Red) (3)
- Andino Deceiver (Black/Chartreuse) (3)
- Major Bunker 4/0 (4)
- Major Herring 3/0 (3)
- Mega Cruiser (Black/Purple) (3)
- Puglisi’s Boca Grande (Dayglo) 3/0 (3)
- Puglisi’s Boca Grande (Yellow) 3/0 (3)
- PSP Bubblehead (Chartreuse) (2)
- NYAP Popper (2)
- Pacu fruit/nut flies (4)
Pole Dancers, foam poppers, Titanic sliders (size BIG), and big mouse imitations are very good choices for Dorado on surface. Flies like the Chernobyl´s Ant or other big terrestrials and bugs imitations are excellent for Pacu and Yatorana.
Sturdy felt-soled wading boots are mandatory. Do not have cleats in them! They click too much on the rocks and spook fish! Do not even think about bringing rubber soled wading boots. Don’t do it. Wear neoprene socks inside your boots, with gravel guards to keep the sand out of them. Bring a wading staff if you use one at home. Waders are not needed in the jungle.
- Simms G4 Pro Guide Boots
- Korkers River Ops Wading Boots
Plan on bringing two pairs of neoprene socks, and bring a tube of anti-fungal cream and a small bottle of Goldbond medicated powder to keep your feet happy.
- Simms Neoprene Wading Sock
You’ll want fast-drying pants or shorts over a lightweight base layer. The preferred wading set up is shorts over compression fitting running tights.
- Patagonia Men’s Sandy Cay Shorts
You will also want to bring 3 or 4 tropical, long sleeved shirts for fishing and around the lodge. You don’t need to bring a ton of clothes; daily laundry service is provided at Tsimane.
- Patagonia Long Sleeve Sun Stretch Shirts
- Patagonia Tropic Comfort Hoody II
- Simms Solarflex Ultra-Cool Armor Shirt
- Skwala Sol Tech Hoody
Freshwater stingrays are rare but present in the waters of Tsimane, and an unfortunate misstep can result in an extremely painful ordeal. For protection, stingray guards will be provided when necessary (you can bring yours if you want to).
- Ray Guard Shield
Other ancillary items to bring include:
- Two pairs of polarized glasses (in case you lose or break a pair)
- Waterproof sunscreen SPF 30+ (UVA) (UVB)
- Hook sharpener
- Stripping fingers, finger tape and fishing-sun protection gloves
- Folding or telescoping wading staff (optional)
- Line clippers
- Hat with dark under brim
- Buff® (bring two)
- Lightweight Gore-Tex® rain jacket and pants
- Lightweight synthetic fleece top
- Insect repellent with 30% + DEET and “anti-itch” cream
- Headlamp for streamside and camp
- Water bottle and dry Gatorade mix, EmergenC packets. Liquid IV – IMPORTANT!
- Lip balm with sunscreen (highest SPF you can get)
- Day pack or fanny pack (100% waterproof)
- Dry bag (optional)
NOTE: The Fly Shop has custom fly selections designed specifically for fishing at Tsimane. The package is based on an approximate value of $340 worth of flies, packaged at a special rate for only $335. Give us a call at 800-669-3474 to order the Tsimane Fly Selection (#19335).
Tsimane Lodge does also have flies available for purchase for Dorado, Pacu and Yatorana. The price per pack of one dozen is approximately USD $100
SETTING THE HOOK:
Dorado Pirapitinga have extremely bony and hard mouths. A low rod strip-set is the only method that consistently buries the fly hook into these fish’s mouth, just like a tarpon set. Do Not Lift or Trout Set)!!
CATCH AND RELEASE
Tsimane practices a strict catch and release policy on all species. Avoid unnecessary handling of the fish. Barbless hooks are mandatory. Handling these fish requires special precautions, not only to avoid harming them but also to prevent injuries to anglers. All of these fish have very strong jaws and razor sharp teeth.
We hope you are excited about your upcoming trip to Lago Strobel Lodge. You have an absolutely wonderful trip to look forward to. The information below should prove to be helpful in your trip preparations. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to call us at (800) 669-3474 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Pole Dancer (3)