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Published: December 1st 2013
Friends and family,
We left San Martin on Saturday morning and headed for Junin de los Andes and the Malleo River to do some fishing on our own. When we reached Junin we decided first to find a hostel, something keeping with our motto of cheap is better than good. We decided not to try the religious style dormatory complete with bars on the windows and a block long. Looked like a YWCA with prison overtones. Instead we ended up at Hostel Tromen...somehow overlooking the particle board flooring, nothing is plumb architecture, and stairway from hell. Heck, the beds were solid and the price was right, $180A or about $18US. We then hit the grocery for our usual meat, cheese, and Matacol bars and over to the fresh fruit stand for a bag of bananas, pears, kiwis, and oranges that set us back all of $2.50US. With that we were off to the river.
The Malleo was beautiful. One of the best things about trout fishing is that you do it in some of the best places in the world, this was no exception. We caught a few small trout but the higlights of the day were John's first
Junin fruit and vegetable stand
Note the trout on the street signs, as is the case throughout downtown.
fish on a dry fly and the 18", 1 kilo rainbow we ambushed while it was quietly feeding in a big deep pool.
We returned to Junin in time to pick up more food for the next day and the went in search of dinner. It is hard to know when we enter a restaurant if it is empty because we eat early, Argentines think dinner before eight is crazy, or the food is bad. This time it was the later. After we ordered the pizza with salami and water, because the only beer they had was in liter bottles, the waitress disappeared. The other couple in the place went looking for her to find out where their pizza was. About then, another young woman came rushing in the door assuring the other customers that their pizza was about ready...she went into the kitchen and in A minute or two brought out their pizza. Meanwhile, the less than engaged waitress was sitting out side the place watching the steady stream of young men in their hopped up Fiats which were from between the era of classic and modern, as in ugly...but as small as they are there is plenty
of room for a liter bottle of beer to be shared in the front seat. Suddenly girl number two appears with our pizza, but half way to the table discovers she is still wearing her cooks apron and hair net. She quickly got rid of those on the way to serving us pizza crust with melted cheese and cold salami slices on top. At least they were thick slices of salami.
If San Martin is Argentina's Vale, Junin is its Leadville...and we loved it!
We got up today before anyone at the hostel, including the owner. John figured out how to open the back gate to free our car, we left the cash on the table with the key, and headed out to the river and to the volcano, Lainin. We picked up a few more trout in the middle of the morning caddis hatch and the went to Volcano Lainin. You can climb it, with the right gear, and I kinow John would have liked to, but we settled for walking up to the glacial morain and just enjoying yet another stunning place in this beautiful country. We drove over to Lago Tromen for lunch where some
No photo can capture this
more friendly Argintines entertained us with jokes and then back to San Martin.
We are here at the Wesley Hotel where our host greeted us with cherries we picked from the tree and a cold local brew that we enjoyed in the back yard. What a great country this is.
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