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March 11, 2016


It’s been one week and we’re still talking about this outstanding hosted trip in Brazil with River Plate Outfitters. Despite record low water levels in the Amazon river system — the largest system in the world — the five anglers on Yellow Dog’s hosted trip managed to defy the odds and catch a remarkable number of fish, including at least 22 in the trophy (10+ pound) category. Fishing the Amazon basin has got to be one of the most exciting and interesting angling experiences in the world. The area boasts healthy numbers of trophy peacock bass, payara, piranha, pacu, aruana, and numerous other exotic species. As we can see from the results of this most recent hosted trip, the Amazon has proven to be incredibly resilient as well.

River Plate Outfitters is truly a unique destination in and of itself. The lodge is completely mobile, utilizing a system of shallow-draft floating cabins in order to access fishing areas that would otherwise be unreachable. If you’re looking to get into some truly remote areas, this is the operation for you. Getting there is surprisingly easy. One typically takes the five hour flight from Miami to Manaus, spends on evening in the city, and then flies into the jungle in a Cessna Caravan float plane. Packing and preparing for a trip like this is obviously important, as arriving with the right gear, equipment and expectations is something that is key to a great trip. With that in mind, we’ve asked our in-house jungle fishing expert, John Hudgens, to help us peel away the layers of mystery and answer a few key questions about fishing in the Amazon.

YD:  Hudge, what are the three flies that you always use? We want details!  Colors, sizes, etc.

John:  For peacocks, I like to have Clouser minnows (chartreuse/white and grey/white), Puglisi baitfish patterns like the peanut butter series in (olive/white and yellow/white), and some top water flies like the Pole Dancer. I prefer larger hook sizes in 2/0 to 4/0.

YD:  What kind of rods do you arm yourself with?  And lines?

John:  I love the new 9-wt. Jungle rod by Winston with an intermediate sink tip line and 7 feet of straight 40 or 50 lb. fluorocarbon to the fly.

YD:  What is the weather like? Since it’s a rainforest, doesn’t it just rain all the time?

John: When it’s not raining it’s pretty darn hot. It’s either wet or hot out with nothing in-between.

YD:  Okay then, any tips on what kind of clothes to bring?

John: Solarflex shirts and lightweight fishing pants. I like to pack hydration tablets to dissolve in my water bottle for a little energy boost around mid-day.

YD:  Now tell us the truth. How bad are the bugs?

John:  Honestly, the bugs aren’t much of an issue in most locations throughout the Amazon. There are sandflies or no-see-ums at night, so you’ll want some bug spray and socks on in the evening, but the mosquitoes are nearly non-existent. I’ve been to a few locations where there are some serious bee issues, but that is not the norm.

YD:  Zika virus: media sensationalism or international health crisis?

John:  I’ve got to say that Zika is another classic example of media sensationalism.  Obviously, Zika is something to be aware of, but I was in Brazil a couple of weeks ago and we never heard a word about the virus nor did we run into mosquitoes.

YD:  Enough with the tough questions—what is your favorite thing about jungle fishing?

John:  I love the people, all the birds, and the exotic fish species that live in the jungle. It’s just a different place.


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