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No country for old flyfishermen !

SHAME y vergüenza !!! a few years ago the government of La Rioja decided to virtually close fishing to foreign visitors -and other regions of Spain alike. The only way to obtain a fishing license now in La Rioja is to pass an exam in April after attending classes (in Spanish) at the local Federacion de pesca between February and May.  In other words tourists can go to hell to stay polite ! Hopefully there are other nice regions around where traveling anglers are still welcome. I leave the rest of the page as it was in the hope the good days could return. And in the meantime lets also discover fine wines of other regions as well...

The Rioja region of Spain is best known for its wonderful wines, rather than for its waters, but among Spanish anglers, the rivers deserve a reputation on par with their wines. The fishing setting is the National Hunting Reservation of Cameros, wild mountain area dominated by Mount Urbion (Alt. 2228 meters), which is the source of most streams and valleys. There is a unique mixture of preserved nature, old stones and rich gastronomy. The main city of the area, Logroño, was a stop on the way for the pilgrims to Santiago since the 11th century. It is now the capital of Spanish wine trading and for some, the capital of Spanish gastronomy. The "tapas street", Calle Laurel, is a whole experience. The mountain trout streams are found one hour south of Logroño. There is no fishing on Tuesdays and Fridays. Dry fly fishing is good from mid-May to mid July. While fishing is good throughout the summer months, the prime time for this trip would be the end of June. We can build guided packages featuring first class or sporting hotels, B&B or houses, in well kept traditional villages which feature many curiosities to be explored for who like old stone architecture. 

los montes pardos...

y las aldeas blancas.... (E.Hemingway)

(... dark hills white hamlets...)

la Rioja pictures of a great trip...

The size of the daily plane from Madrid, tells  it is not a mass tourism destination...

Welcome to the airport of Logroño

it is time for a first snack in one of the wonderful cafés

and a walk in the old town center

very quiet and nice looking in the morning

the storks are peacefully staying on top of the bell tower...

... while you are taking the road to the mountains.

and dicover the first treasures of these wild landscapes

a bridge on the river you will fish

small streams

your mountain hotel

and it is time to wet a first line

and hopefully hook your first local brownie

while the sun is setting behind the "Monte Urbion".

la Rioja riverside life...

the main streams are generally wide and shallow

flowing in steep valleys. There are boulders and pebbles on the bottom

and nicely coloured brown trout

some of the fishing spots are really idyllic, and the local anglers delightful...

Like here: Carlos... king of the "truchones" (oversized trout), and of the good life !

or Paco, equally at ease with fly rod and trout or with ham and knife

government's river keepers, are very friendly but take serious care of their streams  

nice villages are scattered in the valleys

you will find there medievial bridges...

elegant buildings...

and beautiful streets...

to make a few steps

peaceful day life... 

and active night life...

la Rioja a gourmet experience...

the riverside "aperitivos" are mouthwatering and can be spectacular

as often in good wine regions, they burn bundles of vine cuts for the BBQ

this gives an amazing taste to lamb chops or bacon

and the spicy "chorizos", are probably the best of Spain

In Logroño are found wonderful wine shops

and food shops

dozens of temptations to smuggle delights back home

a paradise for the "foodies"

la Rioja Wines & vineyards of La Rioja

It is generally admitted that the red wines of la Rioja are competing on the world market with the best wines of Bordeaux. Rioja and Bordeaux have comparable ambitions, targeting the same palates, with the same expectations of quality achievement. Although the vines, earth, climate and methods are very different, the truth is that they are very much comparable. In La Rioja, the main grape is the Tempranillo and the use of Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot is usually forbidden. The vintage in La Rioja has less importance than in Bordeaux. Aging starts by the maturing time into oak casks. There are three stages: Crianza (2 years cask), Reserva (3 years), Gran Reserva (5 years). The landscapes of the vineyards offer a wonderful sight along the country roads of the region.

We will be delighted to arrange your visit to the "Bodegas" (cellars) of the most famous wineries in La Rioja.

La Rioja, vineyards in the fall - picture from the official turism website



-1- Catalonia The upper valleys of Cataluña, for a perfect break from Barcelona. -2- Aragon Impressive high valleys in the National Park of Ordesa in the Pyrenees. -3- Navarra The famous rivers fished by Hemingway when he was attending los Sanfermines bullfight fiestas in the 20's and again in the late 50's. -4- La Rioja La Rioja is best kown for the wonderful wines, but Spanish anglers grant an equally good reputation to its waters. -5- Cantabria Excellent rivers and unspoiled charming valleys of easy reach from Santander and the elegant seashore of the mar cantabrico. Likely to be awarded 1st Spanish wife endorsed destination. -6- Asturias Famous coastal rivers Carès, Deva, Sella (and others) for the amazing trilogy: Salmon, Sea run trout, and Brown trout.

Rio Najerilla, compulsory stop....

... at famous bridge of "la Hiedra"


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