Neltume River

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Quick Facts

  • Class: II/III+
  • Distance: (3.2k) (2 miles)
  • Average Gradient: 3.7m/km (20ft/mile)
  • Maximum Gradient: unknown
  • Temperature: 20 C (70 F)
  • Water Quality: Clear, Blue
  • Character: Wide shallow ledges
  • Nearby Rivers: Enco River, Fuy River, San Pedro River

General Description

The Rio Neltume runs from Lago Neltume, south, to the confluence of the Rio Fuy. The Neltume river is a great warm-up river for the Rio Fuy or a great alternative river for beginning or less experienced paddlers. Neltume river is a short, warm water run that becomes more difficult as it nears the Fuy River confluence.


The river is shallow and wide, requiring swimmers to keep their feet up to avoid on-coming rocks and possible foot entrapment scenarios. Rescue will probably occur at the bottom of the rapids due the river's width.

River Flows / Gauge Information / Season

The Rio Neltume typically averages about 28 cms (1000 cfs) during the summer months.

Rapid Descriptions

  • Confluence Rapid: This is the last rapid on the Neltume before it joins the Rio Fuy. Noisy and wide with small ledges and holes studded around the edges and sides. The channel is not that obvious which creates a good lesson in water reading for beginner paddlers.

Put-Ins and Take-Outs

  • Put-in: Put-in on Lago Neltume, river-left shore. Access to the river is across private farmland, so ask for permission from the local land owner.

  • Take-out: Taking-out at the confluence with the Fuy River is not possible, so plan taking out at the First Bridge of the Rio Fuy. Class II water from the confluence to the First Bridge.

  • Optional Put-in and Take-out: For a whole day of class II/III paddling put in above Lago Neltume on the Upper Rio Neltume and paddle across the lake. Take-out on Lago Panguipulli in the village of Choshuenco.


To paddle the Neltume River you will need to get to the town of Choshuenco on Lago Panguipulli. Choshuenco lies between the larger cities of Los Lagos to the southwest and Villarica to the northwest in Chile. San Martin de Los Andes in Argentina is the closest city coming from the east. Map: Los Lagos

Places to Stay / Campgrounds

For places to stay check out the town of Panguipulli on the opposite side of the lake than Choshuenco. Their tourism office website will help you with lodging or camping:

Maps & Outside Links

  • Maps:
  • Outfitters:
Expediciones Rucapillan

Copyright & Terms of Use

  • Copyrights: (Copyright © 2006, Expediciones Chile) All photos, maps, diagrams, text and computer code is the copyrighted property of Expediciones Chile with all rights reserved.

  • Terms of Use: Any type of reproduction, republication, or re-transmission for commercial use is prohibited without the expressed, written permission of Expediciones Chile. Users of this Wiki guidebook may print copies of the text, images and diagrams for personal river running use only. Users may not alter the diagrams or text without expressed written permission of Expediciones Chile. Users must read and acknowledge the disclaimer before printing. Printing implies acknowledgment of the disclaimer.


  • Disclaimer: Under no circumstances should paddlers substitute the information and diagrams in this guidebook for their own sound judgment on the river and their collective experience running rivers. The diagrams, maps and descriptions found here are only approximations of what paddlers will find on the river once they get to Chile or Argentina. They are not to scale and nor are they completely accurate. Water levels change, rocks move around, landslide debris can enter the river at any time making the diagrams obsolete. Expediciones Chile also reserves the right to update these diagrams and descriptions at any time as we find better ways to illustrate and discuss the rapids. Use this guidebook at your own risk.

    Read More: Disclaimer
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