Rediculous Guide Prices

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by Thomas Williams, Jun 27, 2012.

  1. Thomas Williams Habitual Line Stepper

    Posts: 1,408
    Ansbach, Germany
    Ratings: +410 / 17
    Hey everyone. I am in the group of people that owns a car and not a truck. I do not own a drift boat due to the fact I cant transport one. I do own a pontoon boat however. I would enjoy booking a guided trip from time to time so I could focus on covering large amounts of water without dealing with being the captain. I am blown away at the prices guides require for trips! I feel that they are highly overpriced! I mean come on $350-$450 a person... thats out of control. True Its not like someone is holding a gun to your head and making you book the trips, and yes I would agree that there are guides that are amazing and are really keyed in to their waters and will multiply your success rate exponentially. It would just be nice if affordable trips were available. Im sure I may be offending some with this post and for that I apologize. Just wanted to get other people takes on the value of the trips available.
  2. Charles Sullivan dreaming through the come down

    Posts: 2,313
    bellingham wa
    Ratings: +558 / 0
    Do the math. How much do you make per day? Once you figure out that here are costs to being a guide, you'll figure out that they aren't geting rich.

    Having said that I don't spend my fishing cash on guides.

    Go Sox,
  3. attack Member

    Posts: 152
    Forks, WA
    Ratings: +18 / 0
    take $50 out of that for gas, $20 out of that for shuttle, $20 out for lunch, $10 out for guide licence, $20 out for insurance, $50 out for taxes, $20 out for boat and vehicle maintenance, $20 out for rods/reels/lines/flies...i could go on...get it?
  4. Upton O Blind hog fisherman

    Posts: 2,167
    out of state now
    Ratings: +218 / 0
    I recall standing at the seafood counter of a local grocery store two years ago. A lady was looking at the price of yellowfin tuna and commented how high the prices were. She then stated that it must not be the "season" for tuna, thus the high price. The seafood clerk informed her that, indeed, it was tuna season and the filets were fresh. She then said "Well, they are certainly too high priced, I'll take a pound and a half."

  5. Freestone Not to be confused with freestoneangler

    Posts: 2,359
    Ratings: +1,208 / 0
    You left out the depreciation of a $7000 driftboat and $20,000+ rig to haul it. Sorry Thomas, but if most guides kept books like a business should keep books, their net will be minimum wage if they are lucky. A guide I know told me he spent $17,000 in fuel one year. Believe me, none of the guides I know are doing it to get rich.
  6. Patrick Gould Active Member

    Posts: 2,356
    Ellensburg, WA
    Ratings: +688 / 1
    $450 per person is alot, but you're got to get a good selection of very experienced guides that will take you fishing for that rate split between two people. Some offer half day or shoulder season rates that make things a little more affordable.

    Beak it down a bit based on the $450 price:
    Guide's expenses:
    Gas: $100
    Gear: $20

    That leaves $280 over 10 hours or $28 an hour for a job where you only work half the days for a year or less. That makes it effectively $14 dollars an hour if you own the business, and less if you work for someone else. I feel real good about tipping these guys 20%!
  7. Drifter Active Member

    Posts: 1,633
    Ratings: +648 / 2
    $350 to $450 LMFAO Those prices are insane! Maybe you should get a drift-boat and truck - suv.
  8. Plecoptera Active Member

    Posts: 622
    Ratings: +28 / 0
    Unless you have a very small underpowered car, towing a drift boat should not be an issue. Most drift boat/trailer combos are under 800 lbs which is easily doable with a class I hitch and a 4 cyl. The only shortcoming if you don't have 4x4 or AWD is that you won't be able to use rough launch sites.

    My Subaru tows my cataraft on a trailer without breaking a sweat and still gets 25mpg. I can barely even tell its back there.
  9. Panhandle Active Member

    Posts: 4,103
    Selkirk Mountains, Idaho Panhandle
    Ratings: +23 / 0
    So let me get this straight......
    You dont own a drift boat or a truck that can pull one, but guides charge too much for having both. Do the math on the cost for owning what you cant afford. Actually, dude, just pony up and you can guide yourself for free.
  10. Drifter Active Member

    Posts: 1,633
    Ratings: +648 / 2
    boise la grande trip 035.jpg

    14 ft. mini drifter with trailer $1500 94 toyota 4x4 stock blue book $3200 not paying insane guide prices or relying on someone else to catch you fish - priceless!
  11. Rick Todd Active Member

    Posts: 1,861
    Ratings: +237 / 0
    If you get another guy, those prices are for one or two anglers. A lot of the fly shops on the Yak have half price deals in March-I always have fun then and you can save some money. For me, the price is worth it just to pick the guide's brain and find some new techniques and flies that are effective. I don't think I have ever regretted the money I spent on a guide. It does get expensive if that is your only way you fish, but one of the things I love about my pontoon is that I can put the fins on and position myself to make ideal downstream casts to the bank, just like I would in a guide boat! Rick
  12. Robert Engleheart Robert

    Posts: 1,147
    Lemoore, CA
    Ratings: +112 / 0
    A friend guides 200 days/year. About 1/3 of that's in Idaho, where he makes a share of that $450/day. The other 2/3 is his own gig in NorCA. Lets say 130 days @ $400 and 70 days @? benifit of the doubt say 250, though I doubt it's that much. That's an annual gross of $76,000. Taxes, insurance, depreciation on boat, trailer, truck,fuel and other o'head; I'd say he's lucky to net 2/3 of that (at best). That's an annual income of $50K with no benefits. Not a lot for someone with an MBA and scratch golfer.
  13. bitterroot Love vintage graphite!

    Posts: 1,428
    Ratings: +215 / 1
    I'd rather fish with a friend and not catch fish than fish with a stranger and catch fish.
  14. Rick Todd Active Member

    Posts: 1,861
    Ratings: +237 / 0
    Mark-I also have a drift boat, but unless you can convince someone to row you all day, it is NOT anywhere near a guided trip! My drift boat is a lot of fun, but I end up rowing about 70% of the time, so it is not a way around paying for a guide. (but a pontoon, Watermaster, Scadden Assault etc is a good substitute for a guide!) Rick
  15. Rick Todd Active Member

    Posts: 1,861
    Ratings: +237 / 0
    I'd rather fish with a friend (who is paying for half of the guide) and we both catch fish while learning a lot in the process!
  16. JS Active Member

    Posts: 862
    Ratings: +47 / 0
    Hilarious. Buy a boat and see how often you get to fish out of it whilst someone else rows(SPOILER ALERT: If you don't have any friends that row, the answer will be.......NEVER!!!). Also, unless you have spent time on the water fishing from a drift boat, you may need (dependant on your skill set) a guide trip to show you how to row/fish out of a boat. As Rick has mentioned above most of those rates are based on double occupancy, so if you have a friend make him/her come up with the other half.
  17. Flyborg Active Member

    Posts: 2,309
    Kalama, WA
    Ratings: +602 / 0
    Most guides I know are insane. They only charge $350-$450 a day to watch other people fish badly.
    Dan Nelson, flybill, aplTyler and 4 others like this.
  18. Steve Call Active Member

    Posts: 1,566
    Wetside, WA
    Ratings: +188 / 0
    What is your time worth? If you can afford days - not hours - learning a river so as to be reasonably successful - not to mention accessing water not available to you on foot - then paying for a guide isn't worth it. If your time is limited, like most folks, then paying for a guide has value.

    I save up and pay for a couple of guide trips each year and the knowledge I've gain and the overall experience has made everyone of them well worth the $. I know several guides and let me assure you none of them are getting rich. They've made a conscious choice to trade off opportunities to make more money in order to do something they love and are passionate about.
  19. JS Active Member

    Posts: 862
    Ratings: +47 / 0
    You beat me to it Rick. That was the biggest disappointment I had six years ago when I purchased my first DB. I had an incredible amount of people willing to go with, but with a disparaging number willing to learn to row.
  20. scottybs Active Member

    Posts: 452
    Bellingham, WA and IGH, MN
    Ratings: +80 / 0

    Having someone to shoot the shit with and row your ass down the river while maybe giving you some constructive criticism, and/advice might be a great thing for your flyfishing skill set. It's an experience, a one hopefully you'll appreciate for the rest of your life, hell maybe you'll even make a friend. That being said, I don't have a crazy amount of $$$ but maybe 2 or 3 days a year a family member or a buddy will split a drift with our favorite outfitter. In terms of a waded guide trip, unless you're a beginner and/or brand new to an exotic destination, hell with it, I'll take it on myself.