What To Expect From Your Guide

By David Hulsey

Fly Fishing guides are a strange bunch. I’m talking real fly fishing guides here. Not daddy’s little boy with his gold card and ten thousand dollar website. Not Joe Blow that caught a couple of fish after a heavy stocking of soap heads and decided, “Hey, I can be a fishing guide!” Not the guy after a quick buck. I’m talking about the guys and girls that bang it out day after day untangling a million knots and still keeping a smile on their face, even though they would really like to hang you from your fly line. Folks with 20 years of experience and thousands of days on the water that have a pair of waders that never dry out through the year and then they decide they will give it a shot. Real Professional Guides.

Professional Guides will give you the best days of their lives just to see you screw up all day long and then hook up and catch your first trout. Knowing they probably have just put another link in the fly fishing chain. To a pro guide, it’s all about passing along a few skills during the day to make you more effective on your next trip and to have a good time doing it. Teaching about conservation, and the environment that those trout live in, should come up during the day. Pro Guides don’t have “pet flies” or techniques that limit your ability to learn new things. Changing flies and techniques should be commonplace on a trip if you haven’t figured out the silver bullet for the fish. A guide should never fish on your trip unless you insist or unless he or she is trying to show you a more effective technique. If he does, he’s probably a beginner trying to learn himself.

If you do catch a nice fish, make sure the guide lets you hold it safely and properly for a picture. If he wants to hold the fish by himself for the pic he is probably trying to get pics for his Instagram feed…Again, beginner city. Trying to make a short cut to fly fishing fame without putting in the days on the water is a sure way to turn off experienced clients. They can spot this a mile away. A guide should be courteous and helpful, to a fault, if he or she wants to make it in this business. Sacrificing flies, leaders, tippet and sometimes a fly rod or two along the way can take a toll on the guide’s brain and finances, but yet they still lace up those wading boots day after day, putting that next link in the fly fishing chain.

Give David Hulsey a call at (770) 639-4001 to book a class or a guided trout trip. See his website at www.hulseyflyfishing.com.