PIRARUCU LODGE

PIRARUCU LODGE

This floating lodge is designed to let the river underneath calm you until you fall asleep

Pirarucu, is and exclusive fly-fishing project that Brazilian Government support and allow, with a focus on Arapaima. The local Association work together with Enviromental Officials to create these very first official sport fishing operations in Brazil.


Maps

Location

Location

Located within the Mamiraua Reserve about 600km west of Manaus a complex of lakes and channels between the Solimoes River and Japura River.

This is a perfect destination for non anglers and families since the Uakari lodge runs ecotourism programs for Bird Watching WildLife. 

The maximum group size is six anglers.  

Mamirauá is a perfect place for non-angler companions to experience the Amazon jungle. The lodge offers an extensive program of daily-guided tours and activities, making this destination a perfect family trip.

Mamirauá is the largest arapaima reserve in the world and it was the first Sustainable Development Reserve in Brazil, legislated by the Government of Amazonas in 1996.

Mamirauá Reserve

Mamirauá Sustainable Development Reserve is an area protected by the state it has an extension of 1.124.000 ha, making it the biggest protected flooded forest in the world.  located between Solimões, Japurá and Auti-Paraná rivers.
Mamiraua Reserve plays an important role in protecting the only 4% of Brazilian Amazon ecosystem that consists of freshwater swamp forest. 
It’s inserted in the Central Amazon Corridor and it’s part of the Amazon Biosphere Reserve. Besides, it’s a recognized Brazilian reserve by Ramsar Convention, that protects wetlands of great importance.
 
As every year the reserve goes through high and low water levels the variation among the crest of these two stages is about 10 to 12 meters. 
The flood variation, the geological history and geography of the place give Mamirauá high levels of endemism and particular species. The water in the core of the reserve is called “black water” in the Amazon, which, despite dark tinting from jungle leaves, is actually quite clear, allowing for sight casting opportunities for a variety of different species.

Travelling here

Guests fly first to Manaus Brazil most U.S. guests will reserve flights to Manaus out of Miami normally flying on American Airlines or TAM. They will have a night at Manaus and depart the next morning via commercial jet liner to the city of Tefé (1 hour) from Tefe a fast boat will transport them to Pirarucú (1 hour).2

Accommodation

This lodge has ten floating cabins each with twoen suite rooms four. The main lodge building features a dining room, living room and kitchen.

It is constructed of local woods following the CAboclos local style and everything is on the water connected with wood platforms. 

Located at the heart of the reserve with short run times to the fishing, in fact most days guests will return to the lodge for a well-prepared lunch before returning for an afternoon fishing session.

Electricity at the lodge: Electricity is only available in the dining room (not in the bedrooms) and is solar powered and available for use between 10am-10pm. The electricity is the same as in the U.S. - 110/220 volt - but with two prongs.

Considering the limited solar panel generation, there’ s no eletricty plugs at rooms only at dinning room. If you want to charge laptops or camera batteries, do it at dining/living room lounge preferable during lunchtime.

Satellite phone and internet are available.

 

Sample itineray 

Day 0 - Upon arrival at Manaus International and staying the night in a hotel for the next morning wait for the transfer for picking you up for the domestic flight.

Day 1 - You will take the domestic flight to get to the lodge and once you arrive at the lodge you will meet the fishing team and staff, and get situated in your suite and get a explanation of the daily fishing plans and get ready for your session of guided fishing.

Day 2 - 5 Each day individual teams (2 anglers) will head out for the day and fish one of the beats in the Pirarucú area, 

TYPICAL DAY:

5:30 am – Coffee is hot

6:30 am – Breakfast

7:30 am – Head to fishing grounds

12:00 pm – Anglers will have a short ride back to

the lodge for lunch.

2:30 pm – After lunch, fishing will resume until late

afternoon when the guides will deliver anglers back

to the lodge around 6:00 pm.

6:30 pm – Cocktails and appetizers

7:00 pm – Buffet Dinners will be served inside the

dining room area

Day6 - After breakfast, you will take the fast boat ride back to Tefe and then transfer to Tefe Airport in time to board the Flight 5245 at 9:25am back to Manaus. Your staff driver will deliver you to the International Airport.


The fishing

What really distinguishes Pirarucu from other destinations is its namesake, The Arapaima. The name of Pirarucú is the guarani and portuguese name for the Arapaima and her synonyms for the same fish.

Arapaima can grow to over 400 pounds and most closely resemble a freshwater tarpon. When hooked they explode in aerial displays, take off on long runs and surrender only after lengthy battles. The fish are often seen gulping air from the surface thus offering sight casting to singles pairs of fish. Arapaima is a very resistant fish out of the water that takes up to 70% of the oxygen needed to live from the air.

While Arapaima is the main focus there are three other species such as;

Arowana -  These wonderful fish are also omnivorous and eat almost about any insect or bait fish presented to them. 

Tambaqui - The Tambaqui is a round fish that is a close relative of the Pacu and can grow up to 100 pounds. At Mamirauá is normally found in the 8 to 24 pound range.

Peacock Bass, Yellow species - These smaller peacock bass range in size from 2 to 8 pounds.

Gear and equipment

PEACOCK BASS

Yellow species: These smaller peacock bass range in size from 2 to 8 pounds, and act much like their larger cousins found elsewhere in the Amazon. When found, they are usually busting bait along the shorelines.

GEAR

6/7 weight with smaller poppers or streamers on a floating line.

RODS

6-7 weight single-handed rods are good to have for the Arowana (and if around, the Tambaqui and Peacock Bass). For Arapaima, bigger rods in the 10 to 12 weight range are best as these fish can range from 100-400 pounds. It is best to have at least three rods rigged with different lines and/or flies in the boat, one set up for arapaima and one or more for the other species. We recommend having one 7wt rod with a floating line for the Arowana, one 10/11 weight rod for the smaller Arapaima with intermediate line and a 12 weight rod for the Giant Arapaima rigged with a 400-600g sinking line.

Please plan on bringing an extra backup rod. Powerful rods with a strong butt section are recommended.

REELS

As with rods, reels that have been designed for saltwater fly-fishing are the best choice. These jungle fish will test your stripping fingers more than your reel, but in the event you can get them on the reel before they get into the wood, reels with strong smooth drags are recommended. Bring a trusted reel that you feel comfortable with. Weight of the reel is important also since you will be casting a lot. 30-pound backing is required. We recommend the Silver King reels from Nautilus.

LINES

Most of the Arapaima fishing is done dredging the depths, so sinking lines are a must, such as a fast sinking sink-tip 24-foot 400 to 600 grain. We strongly suggest you bring at least two back up fly lines, as the the Pirahnas on occasion will bite your line while stripping in or fighting a fish. For the floating and intermediate lines, weight forward lines designed specifically for the tropics and saltwater are what you want. Rio Outbound Tropical Short or comparable, ultra-aggressive, warm water fly lines hands-down work the best. Another amazing line is the Rio Tropical Out bound Short clear intermediate tip line, the 30ft INT/15ft Clear.

Full floating Tropical Outbound Shorts are excellent for effortlessly throwing giant wind resistant poppers and baitfish streamers. Do not bring cold water floating lines, as the hot weather makes these lines soft and gummy.

Important Note. Bring 50-80lbs core resistant fly flines. The Rio Leviathan, Outbound and the Scientific Anglers Titan are good choices.

For the Arawana and Peacocks bring a warm water floating 6/7wt line, good for throwing large dry flies and small baitfish.

LEADERS

Arapaima: Segar 60-80# (non-stretch) or 80-100# Flouro – leaders will be 5-7’ long straight with no butt section or tippet. For the smaller Arapaima bring spools of 20, 30, 40 # fluorocarbon also tied straight leaders of 5-7’ in length.

Arawana, Peacock & Tambiqui: Require longer 8-9 foot leaders tapering down to 12-20#.

FLIES

All Arapaima: Fishing is done using baitfish, patterns of all various weights and lengths. There is a new world here to discover. For baitfish imitations, streamers in white/yellow, solid black with glitter, black /purple and black/red, really any combination of these colors are very effective.

Large Arapaima, we need heavily dressed flies in lengths from 4 to 12 inches, with good action in the water, in barbless 6/0 to 8/0 (high quality hooks as Tiemco600SP or the Onwer Aki) are required.

As for patterns, the most typical flies used are synthetic material streamers such as the Glimmer Minnow and the Sardina Cruiser. However many baitfish imitations have proved to be very successful: Puglisi Streamers in medium to very big sizes, Whistlers, Umpqua’ s Jungle Love and Tarpon Snake, Decievers and Half and Half’s. Imagine that arapaima can eat a baitfish from up to 10 inches!! So plan to have big streamers in clear colors mixing with yellow/red/orange and also darker colors as black&red and combinations.

Small Arapaima: Same as above but tied on 4/0-6/0 hooks. Best to have the strongest and sharpest hooks available. Arawana. Peacocks, Tambaqui:Big foam poppers and divers as well as very big rubber leg dry flies like Chernobyl Ants, beetles and cockroaches are fun to fish. It is a good idea to have a few fruit flies in case you get into a big school of Tambaqui.

Clothing Suggestions

RECOMMENDED CLOTHING
YOU NEEDN'T OVERLOAD YOURSELF WITH GEAR, BUT THESE ITEMS ARE REGARDED AS ESSENTIAL:

wo Pair of Polarized Sunglasses (in case you lose or break a pair).

Waterproof Sunscreen SPF 30+ (UVA) (UVB)

(Waterproof and unscented)

 

Buff Face Mask, (light in color)

Fishing Hat w/Brim for Sun

Fly Rods 5/6/7/8/9 Weights (no less than 3)

Reels with Minimum 30 pound Dacron Backing

Saltwater Outbound Fly Lines (extra lines for backup)

Flies and Fly Box

Long Sturdy Pliers (debarbing and hook removal)

Hook Sharpener

Stripping Fingers or Finger Tape

Leaders, Fluorocarbon Tippet and wire tippet

Fishing Sun Protection Gloves

Line clippers

Light Weight Gore-Tex® Rain Jacket

Light Weight Synthetic Fleece Top

4 Long Sleeve Fishing Shirts

1 Pair of Fast Drying Shorts or swimsuit

3 Pair of Fast Drying Pants

Season

The season at Pirarucú is from September to the end of November.

The dry season in this part of the Amazon runs from July through January so this season straddles when water should be low and fish congregating in the lakes and channels.

November 30th marks the end of fishing due to special regulations from the environmental authorities in Brazil who close any kind of fishing for Arapaima throughout the Amazon to protect juvenile fish

PHOTOS

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VIDEOS

Species


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