Being a guide

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by Whitey, Mar 18, 2014.

  1. mx610ktm

    mx610ktm Member

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    I'm sure as I grow older and the way I enjoy fishing changes due to age or injuries I will completely change my mind. But where I am now in life I can't justify it. Guides are definitely important for flyfishing just not to me. But they keep shops open which I love so pick your poison
     
  2. mx610ktm

    mx610ktm Member

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    Yeah so young guides get your shit figured out cause I'm gonna need you in 20 years
     
  3. Trapper

    Trapper Author, Writer, Photographer

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    Whitey -- I'm glad you enjoyed my book and stories. I've tried a few other fly fishing forums and this one is the best I've found. When is the Caddis Festival? PM me a photo of yourself, so I can try to find you.

    Trapper
     
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  4. South Fork

    South Fork Active Member

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    14 hours a day times 100 plus days on the river. Guiding sick, injured or pissed off.

    I will take that over an office job any day, but by about day 45 straight, I start to question my sanity.
     
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  5. Greg Armstrong

    Greg Armstrong OldRodsHaveMoreFun

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    Reminded me of my old home town - a long time ago.
    They used to have the annual "Cabbage Festival"... complete with the crowning of the Cabbage Queen.

    Guide on, all you old timers!
     
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  6. Porter

    Porter Active Member

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    Guiding is not all the cake and eat it too that some claim they have, just like teachers don't always work part time and have summers off, both are tough professions and I respect both. Just like the teacher who has a few class clowns I'm sure(and know ;) ) the guide puts up with some real a**holes at times but they remain poised and professional throughout their encounter. Thank you all!
     
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  7. Bob Triggs

    Bob Triggs Stop Killing Wild Steelhead!

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    I think that it helps if you like people to begin with, that you enjoy their company. This work should be approached as a life long craft, with an endless opportunity for learning. Being a serious conservationist and naturalist will improve your own participation in the game. It would be nice to see more guides getting involved in some of the restoration programs we have in here Washington. People want to learn about the places you are taking them, the natural history and social culture of the region, the wildlife and forests etc., and about the fish too. And if you are studying the history and status of your fishery, you may have to make some well informed but tough decisions, like when and where to fish, and when not to fish. My hat is off to you Whitey.

    There is so much to learn of any fishing environment, and from the people, and your fishing, that one could never really know it all. I have guided some of the wealthiest people you can imagine, people who spend well in excess of $100,000 a year chasing wild trophy trout across the planet. And I have guided some of the hardest working "working stiffs" as well- people who could barely afford a guided day on the water anywhere, and they were delighted to catch any fish at all. I have spent weeks and months in wilderness camps, deep into the most beautiful places on earth, working with some of the best people I ever met, and also with people so boorish and inept that it was a struggle to survive being on the water with them. I have experienced only a few rare instances of guiding anyone who could ruin my day on the water. One of the better head guides that I worked for, at an Alaska lodge, reminded me one September morning as we were loading gear into the float planes at dawn, while the guests were still at breakfast, while most of the rest of Alaska was still sound asleep, while our backs hurt and we were sore all over and end-of-season tired, while we were slipping and sliding on frost covered docks and ramps: "Don't forget that while they are here, every single day is their Opening Day." On more than one occasion, as we met the arriving guest anglers at the airport at the beginning of each week of an Alaska summer, there would be a few people who we weren't so sure that we wanted to spend a week in a float plane and jet boat with. And always we were judging them by the shallowest of details. By the end of the week we were sorry to see them leaving so soon. Some of these people are still my close friends almost 20 years later.

    I think you have to love seeing people try something new, discovering a way to catch fish that they had never tried before, and being happier to see them hook a fish than you would be if you had caught it yourself. You have to like helping people at any level of experience, encouraging the beginners, and biting your tongue with the experts. And always putting them first. I was lucky to work for some good people in the beginning, and their attitude was always that the people who we were guiding were our Guests, not our clients. So a lot of it is your attitude, how you see people and how you want to relate to them. I have learned a great deal from my guests, and some of it was about the fishing.
    http://olympicpeninsulaflyfishing.blogspot.com
     
  8. Jordan Simpson

    Jordan Simpson Active Member

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    As a relatively young guide (in terms of age and industry experience), I partially agree with the OP, as well as disagree.
    I fall into the age bracket of the OP's post description, but not necessarily into the skills or personality.
    I grew up as the only person in my family who fished- and still am- and had to teach myself a lot of stuff. I was obsessed with it, and always will be. As a kid, I would watch fishing shows and take notes on everything. I have folders with info about the date of shooting, what gear, what baits and structure they were fishing in the episode- all on bodies of water I'll probably never fish; but as a kid, I thought and dreamed that one day I would and I wanted to be prepared and know everything about it.
    As my angling life progressed, so did the social interactions of those who shared my passion. I've actively pursued this life from recreational and sport angler to industry professional- retail, sales, and guiding- but that's because I can, and feel I should (along with others who know me).

    But there are people who I've met along the way that do the same as me that I feel shouldn't. They're great anglers, incredibly knowledgeable about the resources and bodies of water that they fish. They know the hatches, the dates, water and air temps, and what stretches of the river require you to crawl and kneel.
    But are they a people person? Nope!
    Should they be ambassadors of our sport or lifestyle? Nope. Should they be the first person for someone who's never fished before to meet? Hell no. NO. Never.

    I feel if you're passionate enough about the resource, knowledgeable enough to the level that you can be successful on the water (regardless of fish cooperation) in terms of hosting as well as teaching, and have the people skills to teach and encourage, then if you want to be a guide, then you should try it.

    And as a guide, I've gotten mad at other guides who have the paperwork to guide but none of the actual people and fishing skills to be a guide. I've had lines run over, low-holed, and fish come off because of other guides. And from one professional to another, we should also show that professionalism and share the water. Take wide berths when drifting or passing actively fishing people, or slow down as not to wake.

    Like I said, the OP made some incredibly valid points- many that could have come out of my own mouth, but I don't think age was one of them.
     
  9. alpinetrout

    alpinetrout Banned or Parked

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    Based on all the reports I've seen that show statistics of retirement savings rates, 90% or more of baby boomers who saw their retirement accounts "tank" didn't have anywhere near enough in them to retire for more than about a year or two to begin with. They were all counting on selling their houses to their children's generation at 1000% markup to finance their retirement, and when it became apparent that that wasn't going to happen, they started blaming everyone else but themselves.
     
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  10. dibling

    dibling Active Member

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    Question for the guides - What does gratuity look like on a day-float trip? I have my first ever float this weekend on the Yak with an out of town friend and am unsure. I've done trips on charter boats in Hawaii (some good and bad) but am not sure what the going rate is. Appreciate any input.

    - Troy
     
  11. jake-e-boy

    jake-e-boy sans caféine

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    fity %
     
  12. freestoneangler

    freestoneangler Not to be confused with Freestone

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    After reading the book "A Good Life Wasted" the bloom was off that rose. I have a good friend who runs an outfitting business in TB's, who we stay/fish with 1-2 times/year, and they work their butts off. I think it would be fun as a part time gig, but would get a bit old for me day after day. I actually encourage guides I fish with (when one on one) to grab a rod and fish... some have and I really don't mind a bit.
     
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  13. freestoneangler

    freestoneangler Not to be confused with Freestone

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    If they detail my car...maybe :). I have used 20% as a normal tip.
     
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  14. mat1226

    mat1226 Active Member

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    Jordan,

    Good to hear what you have to say here. I have to say that I do not agree with the OP. If a young guy or an old guy for that matter has the balls and the gumption to get his name out there and solicit clients, good for him. Let the marketplace work for gawd's sake. Why in the world would anyone discourage a young man who thinks he can get the job done? I say if you are a guide and think you know your craft and you see a guy struggling for whatever reason, take the guy under your wing and pass some of your knowledge on to him. By the way I have never been a guide, but my brother did for over a decade out of one of the shop's in West Yellowstone. He worked his butt off. He would never discourage someone from giving it a go, least of all a young guy with gumption. Nothing to worry about here, the kid gets it together or he moves to a new trade.
     
  15. deansie

    deansie Active Member

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    I'd agree with this...for every two twenty something guides that don't know anything, I bet there's a 30 or 40 year old out there guiding that is equally ignorant, arrogant or disrespectful of other anglers. Like anything in life, one learns from experience and over rotating in one skill set does not make one guide better than the bunch...while I agree with some of the comments of the OP, most of it seems to be fairly generic comments that don't do justice to all the "kids" out there doing it right way.