The days of the old crusty fishing guide is behind us.
Before we get into this article, make sure you check out my latest fishing report on my “Fishing Report Page”: HERE
Not only am I a full time guide but I am also a client. In this world of endless pop ups and choices, picking the right guide for your yearly guided fishing trip can be a daunting task. I’m no different than my clients. I work all year and save my penny’s for my big trip and finally my chance to pull on a fish of a life time.
Ok for me I have some clear advantages I know what I am looking for when shopping for my guide. Let me share some pointers without being self promoting that will make this less of a struggle.
First the basics.
Lets cover social media presence and website. We need to see both and some integration into social media fb(for the over 50 crowd) and Instagram for the younger generation are awesome tools to be used showcasing experiences on the water. They are free. Mostly.
The website should be a landing pad for the social media tools. The website should give a basic description and be seemingly updated and current.
Let’s face it the days of word of mouth are passed. It’s word of post going into 2020. By no means do these tools have any bearing on ones ability to get you into a fish, but they do show professionalism. I assure you, no one working the web for clients wants a negative Yelp review. The website should give you a sense of comfort that this guide catches fish and has decent equipment. I don’t necessarily think it needs to be the best what ever that is. Effort should be made to provide a current website with contact info.
Don’t be afraid to reach out, send an email or call your potential fishing guide. He/She should be willing to take some time to talk. Its important for both “new” guide and “new” client to communicate, to get a feel for personality. Does this fishing guide make you comfortable? Is this fishing guide a good fit?
The days of the old crusty fishing guide is behind us. Perform a Google search of “fishing guide” and there’s many, many options. Take your time to make a choice. You don’t want to spend the day with someone who is upset/stressed out because you are challenged with a technical cast or you need help in holding the rod using an improved method. Although I’m on the water daily, like you I don’t fish, actually fish with a fly rod or conventional rig daily or even monthly. As a fishing guide, the job is a teaching position first. A learning experience where you never feel stupid or inadequate is part of your investment.
Always be clear
Always be clear about what you want. Are you getting in to a mixed trip with 2 other couples you don’t know? Or are you wanting to book the whole boat for just you and your friends? Also remember if your looking for a deal your not Looking for a great experience. You get what you pay for. There’s a price for every fishing experience. Trust me.
Be willing to pay a fair value. Its always worth it.
Next know what you’re looking for and be open for suggestions. What I mean is let’s say you want to catch a steelhead. But its early and summer run salmon are the hot fish. Listen to your guides suggestion. It’s in the guide’s best interest to keep you happy and rods bent. A guide should usually offer suggestions for what is your best species at the time of your adventure. There is a saying out there I love and I find my self saying it often(mostly in my head) “its fishing guide not fishing god”. All this means is it’s still fishing even the best guides get skunked. It’s a fact of life. What makes a great guide is how they deal with it. How they react to tough conditions, tough fishing defines the best guides.
Will they work as hard as they should? What does that look like? Will they try different things throughout the day? Will the attitude be positive even during the toughest fishing? This is what separates a pro from a newbie. We can only control so much. At the end of the day whether you limit out or catch nothing, the most important thing is how they made you feel. That’s what matters. Did you feel important? Were you a priority? Did you walk away feeling like you learned something about your day? These are the things we as guides can control. Being on time having good equipment and being a good communicator are huge but the biggest thing, the most important thing, is you like this person, this fishing guide. You’re excited to spend your day, you time and money on them. That is by far the most important thing. This is how you guarantee a great time on the water. Take your time do some shopping and research. Fish with some one you like. Over the years you’ll have great days and some days the fishing just never really turns on, but a day on the water is priceless.
I hope this helps and gives you some insight for more information about me or what I’m up too.
Have any ideas, experiences or tips on getting on board with a great fishing guide? Share your comment below and I will reply. You comment below helps me out, helps make this blog a better resource and honestly… your thoughts are interesting and useful. Got for it!