Port Howard is the oldest and largest remaining sheep farm on West Falkland, and a great destination for those wanting to experience all aspects of the Falklands. Although wildlife is not Port Howard’s principle attraction, a Gentoo penguin colony and a large number of waterfowl can be found at Gladstone Bay on Port Purvis, only an hour’s drive from the settlement.
Port Howard offers one of the best golf courses in the Islands. The nine-green/eighteen tees Clippy Hill course offers a challenge to golfers of all standards. With no queues and just a handful of people on the course at any one time, whilst in beautiful surroundings, this is the perfect way to relax. You will have ample opportunity to see a working farm in full flow, especially if you are visiting during the summer season when you may be able to view the process of gathering, sheep shearing, wool classing and baling, and even maybe the final product being loaded onto the intercoastal vessel which also delivers stores, fuel and any personal goods to the farms around the Islands.
In the grounds of Port Howard Lodge there is a small museum giving an insight into the 1982 conflict when 1,000 Argentine troops occupied the settlement. At the edge of the settlement there are some well-marked minefields remaining from this period, and guided excursions can take visitors to some of the areas that figured during the conflict including the remains of crashed aircraft.
Port Howard Lodge
• Converted farmhouse
• 7 rooms (2 double, 3 family and 2 twin)
• All ensuite
• Full board accommodation only (packed lunches provided)
• Comfortable wood panelled lounge and bar
• Full and half day guided tours to Gladstone Bay or other settlements on West Falkland
• Walking farm tours
• Fishing guide/ghillie
Port Howard Fishing
Undoubtedly one of the main attractions of Port Howard is the excellent trout and mullet fishing on the Warrah and Chartres Rivers and many estuaries and creeks around the settlement. A ghillie is on hand from the Lodge to give you advice and ensure your time on the river is challenging and enjoyable and leaves you keen to return for another day's sport.
Recommendations from a Local Fishing Guide
A 10 ft or 10 ft 6 in rod with size 8 WF line will do for most of our rivers and conditions. I tend to use an 8 -9 line or one above what the rod suggests to take into account our wind and variable conditions. I suggest a floating line with a slow sinker tip or an intermediate. Most fish are taken just under the surface in the 1 - 2 ft area generally and just after the line lands. As for flys, opinions will always vary, but I have been using the General Practitioner, Stouts Tail and Teal Blue and Silver for many years very successfully all over the Falklands; all double barbed of various sizes depending on the wind, from size 3 - 6's. Sometimes tube flys are appropriate too if a flood is on. Generally the bigger the better if manageable in the winds.
The trout tend to be eating a local small orange shrimp called krill, or small smelt and some times the blue bottle fly hence my suggestion above. The flies you will use on the Rio Grande or typically on Scottish rivers for example are not suitable for here. The fishing here will be different to those rivers, for example there is not a lot of flow downstream unless we have a flood going so you have to make the fly move in the water with a small sharp retrieve.
When fishing up rivers deep wading will not generally be required. I like people to stay out of the river as much as possible to avoid scaring the fish in the pools. Wading will be necessary in the estuaries where larger areas need to be covered. The river conditions, water heights etc. on the day will dictate where and when to fish, up river or in the estuary during the day.
Read more about fishing in the Falklands... click here
Main photo courtesy Mark Spicer