El Saltamontes

Private Ranch on Ñireguao River, Chile
El Saltamontes (translation: grasshopper) combines a true, luxury Chilean experience with next level terrestrial fishing for brown and rainbow trout.

El Saltamontes

Private Ranch on Ñireguao River, Chile
El Saltamontes (translation: grasshopper) combines a true, luxury Chilean experience with next level terrestrial fishing for brown and rainbow trout.

El Saltamontes

Private Ranch on Ñireguao River, Chile
El Saltamontes (translation: grasshopper) combines a true, luxury Chilean experience with next level terrestrial fishing for brown and rainbow trout.

Destination Description

A fresh start for 2025, owner and original operator Jose Gorroño has turned over management of El Saltamontes Lodge to Dane and Chiara Emerson, longtime friends and clients of Gorroño.  Having already cut their teeth at Espiritu Santo Bay Lodge, Dane and Chiara are passionate and energized about taking over the legacy Saltamontes program and adding a few new ingredients to the mix.

Operating for 34 seasons, El Saltamontes is a fly fishing institution.  It’s the perfect blend of a pure Chilean Patagonia cultural experience and an other-worldly trout fishing program.  The high-end fly fishing lodge sits right on the banks of the Rio Ñireguao, a river famed for its impressive terrestrial fishing for brown trout, inside a 5,000 acre true old-school working ranch … and scattered throughout the property are dozens of lagoons and narrow creeks, all loaded with healthy, hungry fish.  But the buck does not stop there.  Within a short drive from the property are endless fishing options - high desert spring creeks, pocket water, canyon stretches, lakes and lagoons, and so on - with most of the fishing accomplished by foamy, dry flies.  And what new managers Dane and Chiara intend to do is continue exploration of new, productive trout water for guests.  

With the change in guard also comes a newly rebuilt lodge for guests.  While it is still in the building phase, it is the Saltamontes legacy to convey an old world elegance to their facilities.  Expect stone and woodwork, antique furnishings, and an overall gravitas to their build and finish-out.  Perfect for serious anglers, couples, families, and non-angling companions, El Saltamontes Lodge is a true gem amidst all other fishing operations.  Staying here, you get a sense you are experiencing Patagonia in a way most tourists never get.  And for the passionate fisherman…well, there’s a reason this lodge is named after a grasshopper.

Quick Facts

Location: Private Ranch on Ñireguao River, Chilean Patagonia

Species: Brown Trout, Rainbow Trout

Seasonality: December - April

Rates:   $6,500 Per Person (Shared Room / Guide) - 7 Nights / 6 Days

Contact Us

Reach out to our team in the travel department to learn more about our experiences at El Saltamontes.

Phone: (888) 824-5420 or (214) 219-2500
Email: travel@tailwatersflyfishing.com


Expect some exciting changes to the fishing program for this 30+ year fly fishing institution. New managers, Dane and Chiara Emerson, have thoughtfully conceived new additions and experiences for guests in addition to the legacy favorites … and the list of options continues to grow. The lodge’s private sections of the Rio Ñireguao, some of the best hopper fishing for brown trout anywhere, will continue to be a fixture on the week’s program, in addition to several additional “beats” of the river off premises that will include canyon stretches and exciting pocket water.

Anglers can also expect options for fishing various sections of high desert spring creeks, heavily wooded and structured rivers, meadow water, miles of floatable water, and various lakes and lagoons within a short distance from the lodge. With 6 rotating guides on staff, plus an additional scout guide, El Saltamontes is committed to leaving no stone unturned when it comes to pioneering unpressured, unexplored, and productive trout water. With an expected schedule of two days fishing the home water, two days off-premises wading, and two days floating, guests will experience all the region has to offer in terms of variety of water and fishing techniques.


The new lodge is currently in the building phase and will be ready for the 2025 season.

An updated and refreshed version of the predecessor lodge is in store for future guests. Comprising multiple buildings built from stone and patina wood, the lodge captures old world elegance with a warm and inviting atmosphere. Fireplaces, antique accents, and buttery leather furniture blend right into the Andean valley and surrounding mountains the lodge is nestled in.

Built within the personal 5,000 acre estancia of Jose Gorroño, the owner and original operator of El Saltamontes for over thirty years, the lodge is an extension of the luxury and Patagonian authenticity found at his personal residence just steps away. But no modern comfort has been overlooked. Electricity runs 24 hours a day by Gorroño’s private hydro-electic turbine. Water is sourced and filtered from a pure mountain spring. And cellular service works, in addition to lodge-supplied WiFi, around most of the ranch.

Accommodating up to 12 guests per week in duplex-style cabins with large adjoining common rooms, guests can enjoy the private fireplaces indoors or take just a few steps outside to make casts each morning or evening. Dinners are taken at a stately dining table, with fine silverware, crystal, and candelabras to complement the five-star culinary experience.


The travel to this remote estancia in the middle of Chilean Patagonia is relatively straight-forward. Overnight flights from the United States to/from Santiago’s Arturo Merino Benitez Airport (SCL) are available on a variety of carriers, including American Airlines, Delta, or LAN Chile. Upon arrival in Santiago, guests take a second flight to Balmaceda Airport (BBA) for an overnight stay in nearby Coyhaique. The next day, guests will be met by El Saltamontes staff for a three-hour scenic road transfer to the lodge, enjoying views of streams and waterfalls along the way.

Guests enter the estancia through the distinguished main gate, and sightings of cattle, horses, hawks, and even alpacas follow until arriving at the sophisticated lodge. Guests are greeted by lodge staff with a traditional Chilean cocktail, the Pisco Sour, while luggage is taken to their rooms for the week.


El Saltamontes is open from December through April.

There really is no best time to go during the four+ month season, but there are some generalities that anglers should be aware of when booking their trip. December is the start of spring in Patagonia, and the “early season” months of December and January generally mean more water in the rivers due to snow-melt. However, runoff is mostly controlled due to the fact that the rivers come out of lakes. The fish are hungry and it is not uncommon to throw very large, foamy dry flies all week.

The “mid season” - consisting of the end of January through February - has similar and consistent fishing, but with somewhat more predictable weather. Wind is a factor no matter the month, and anglers should expect wind to pick up in the afternoons. February is a popular month to throw terrestrial patterns, although streamer fishing can be productive for the larger brown trout.

The “late season” of March and April is considered the start of fall in Patagonia, where anglers can expect lower rivers, cooler temperatures, and (also) excellent fishing. Typically, anglers will need to size down their dry flies or opt for streamer fishing.


While fishing is the predominant activity at El Saltamontes, non-angling companions or those wishing to take a day off from fishing would certainly enjoy the scenery and wildlife viewing opportunities right outside their door. A restful walk around the property almost always includes sightings of horses, cattle, birdlife, and even alpacas. The front deck of guest cabins is a great place to unwind with a book. Guests can also enjoy the onsite hot tub. For an off-premises or guided non-angling activity, lodge staff can assist with coordinating horseback riding or glacier-viewing adventures for an additional fee.

2025 Rates

$6,500 7 nights/6 days (shared room/shared guide)

$9,500 7 nights/6 days (private room/private guide)

Two single & private rooms available on a first come basis at the double occupancy rate.

What's Included

  • Guided fishing
  • Double occupancy accommodations
  • Meals
  • Wine, beer, and pisco sours
  • Fishing Licenses
  • Road transfers to/from Balmaceda Airport or nearby Coyhaique

What's Not Included

  • Airfare to Santiago, Chile
  • Meals, Lodging and other expenses in Santiago
  • Airfare to Balmaceda from Santiago
  • Hotel in Balmaceda or Coyhaique night before transfer to the lodge
  • Guide and Staff Gratuities
  • Overweight baggage expenses
  • Items of personal nature
  • Hard alcohol
  • Tackle and equipment

Terms & Conditions

Tailwaters Travel must adhere to the cancellation policies of the guides, outfitters and lodges which it represents. El Saltamontes Lodge's policy follows: A non-refundable fifty percent deposit is due at the time of booking to confirm all reservations. No refunds are given unless a replacement angler can be found. Full payments are required at 90 days from departure. No refunds or credits will be given due to fishing time lost to inclement weather. Refunds of deposits/payments made on credit cards will be charged a 3.5% service charge to fully compensate Tailwaters Travel for all bank charges incurred. Receipt of deposit and/or final payment is acknowledgement that registrant has read and accepts the cancellation, refund and responsibility clauses.

We highly recommend travel RIPCORD Travel Insurance!

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