Rio Futaleufú (bridge to bridge)

Rio Futaleufú (bridge to bridge)

Kurt Casey

Feb 6, 2008

The bridge to bridge section on the Lower Futaleufú is one of the funnest stretches of whitewater on earth. This section provides ample pushy, big volume, class 3-4 rapids. Due to an upstream dam in Argentina the water is warm (relative to other nearby Chilean Rivers)

Many kayakers running this section for the first are intimidated by the big water. they prefer to follow someone through the rapids but after 1-2 more runs these same folks will oftentimes be found comfortably leading others down the river. the biggest rapid on the section is called Mundaca and features some big exploding waves and holes. A few good play waves exist including the “Magic Carpet”. The wave has good eddy service but has been known to take people deep in the whirlpools below.

Pamela Yolito in Mundaca foto by Eva Luna Ramirez

The put in for the bridge to bridge section is the Paserela located about 40 km below town of Futaleufú. The takeout is 7 KM downriver at Puente Futaleufú. An optional takeout is 3-4 km below Puente Futaleufú at the camping area beside the river. This campground land is private and the owners will likely charge people to takeout here. This extra section of river has two large rapids called “Mas o Menos” a Casa de Piedra” the latter being hardest on the Lower Futaleufú.

Bridge to bridge
Girls day on the River foto from the put in bridge by Andres Bozzolo

Midway through the run is a great camping area called Cara Del Indio Cara del Indio The owners Luis and Lydia Toros are great people and offer hot showers, hot tub, fresh bread, etc.

A more comprehensive description of the this section and other parts of the Futa can be found at Tyler Curtis and Marianne Saether’s online guide Futa guide
A print version of their Futa guide and other Chilean Rivers should be available in middle 2008.