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Old 03-19-2008, 08:34 PM
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Observations of a fishing guide

Here are a few things I have noticed around the lake over my many years as a fishing guide.

"How many fish can I expect to catch in a day?"...... is totally dependent on your casting ability..... and the weather.

Out in the boat fishing is NOT the time to learn how to cast.

An accurate cast is more important than a long cast.

Single hook lures rigged weedless don't hang up in trees as much as lures with two treble hooks. (see above)

Barbless hooks catch more fish and are easer to remove from the fishes mouth, your hat, your shirt, and your ear.

Long pants, long sleeve shirts, wide brim hats, and sunglasses protect your ears better than an application of sun tan oil. (see above)

When casting, always be aware of what is behind your client... they won't.

Re-spooling a fishing reel with expensive new line will almost always guarantee the next client to use it will be a beginner.

Cranking really fast on the handle of a spinning reel while the fish is taking out line will result in a twisted, tangled, kinked up fishing line.

Some "bird nests" in a reel are so tangled that only a pair of scissors will help.

When fishing with beginning anglers it's a good idea to have 2 or 3 rods rigged and ready to go..... per angler.

Sight fishing for spawning peacock bass is not as simple as most people tend to believe it is.

When site fishing for spawning peacock bass, you must be able to see the fish.

You can see the fish a lot better if you remember to bring your polarized sunglasses.

Locking down the drag on a fishing reel will result in broken line or bent hooks. (lost fish)

It's a good idea to frequently check (and loosen) the drag setting on the reel of most clients.

There is no such thing as a "fool-proof" fishing reel. (Fools can be very creative)

Women anglers listen to the advice given by the fishing guide.

Where skill is about even, women anglers will catch more fish. (see above)

Many beginning anglers, when hooked up to a fish, loose all hearing in both ears.

Any fishing rod laying in the bottom of the boat will be stepped on.

The more expensive the fishing rod, the more likely it will be laid down in the bottom of the boat.

Electric car windows and ceiling fans eat rod tips.

Fishing with live bait is not as simple as most people tend to believe that it is.

When using tilapia as live bait, they will always quickly swim into the thickest cover available.

After the live tilapia swims into the thick cover, it is usually quicker and easier to break the line and tie on another hook.

Always buy fish hooks in the 250 package size.

Learn how to tie one or two good knots....... and how to tie them quickly.

Aloha,
Stan
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Old 03-19-2008, 08:41 PM
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Default Re: Observations of a fishing guide

Some good observations here . . . but as a potential client I'd be uncomfortable with a guide so critical of his clients.
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Old 03-20-2008, 02:51 PM
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Default Re: Observations of a fishing guide

Hi to all,

Unfortunately most guides would agree with Stan. Many times a client will have more money than sense.

I have to say in defense of some senior clients. As a young fly fisher I could cast a country mile and with good accuracy. I could fish all day and all night with little rest. But as I have aged I have a hard time seeing fish. I stumble and fall more often than I care to admit. My cast get shorter every year and my timing is a thing of the past. If I fish for more than 1/2 day that is an accomplishment. So for all us old guys and gals, I am sorry we might give you guides a bunch of problems but we may not be fishing if it weren't for you and your equipment. (Stan I know you are not talking just about seniors)

Just to be clear, I still operate my boat and fish a couple of times a week but it is not as easy as it use to be. The Florida sun in the Summer will wear me to a frazzle.

Frank
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Old 03-20-2008, 03:49 PM
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Default Re: Observations of a fishing guide

I guess I've been lucky...
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Old 03-20-2008, 05:57 PM
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Default Re: Observations of a fishing guide

Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank Whiton View Post
. . . The Florida sun in the Summer will wear me to a frazzle.
Frank, that Florida summer sun will wear anyone to a frazzle!

I think guiding is one of the toughest jobs there is, and I'm not saying that because I've ever been a guide (I haven't, & wouldn't have the patience & empathy required). A guide may not have the boredom of a nine to five desk job, but he doesn't have the security of one either. You've got to be out in the elements every day you can or you don't make a living. You're often dealing with obnoxious clients who have no realistic expectations, and will be blamed - however unfairly - for the vagaries of nature, be it rain, wind, temperature, uncooperative fish and river flow conditions, or the client's own shortcomings.

However, I do think that in the never-ending competition for business, some guides overstate how much they really welcome novices. I've heard many anecdotes from acquaintances, and seen some on the river myself, where a guide is exasperated with a novice fly-fisher(wo)man's lack of casting or fish-playing skills when the guide should have expected that when he knowingly took on a beginner. I'm sure, being an outdoors pursuit, there's probably an element of machismo in this. However, the most successful guides I've had the privilege to have guide me have been teachers at heart, and I think that willingness to teach when the circumstances call for it is the indispensable skill for any truly great guide.

Just my 2c . . .

Neil
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Old 03-20-2008, 07:14 PM
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Default Re: Observations of a fishing guide

As I guide I find it best to focus on the good of each client, and work from there. Remember they are on vacation and came to me for a fun time. My only job is their enjoyment. I'm not their Judge. 75% of my clients are novices. Their is no greater joy than teaching someone how to do something and then getting to watch them do it. The smile on there face is Priceless!!!
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Old 03-20-2008, 08:12 PM
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Default Re: Observations of a fishing guide

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Originally Posted by Davo View Post
As I guide I find it best to focus on the good of each client, and work from there. Remember they are on vacation and came to me for a fun time. My only job is their enjoyment. I'm not their Judge. 75% of my clients are novices. Their is no greater joy than teaching someone how to do something and then getting to watch them do it. The smile on there face is Priceless!!!
Davo, you make my case - and your attitude tells me without doubt that you are a great guide!

Neil
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Old 03-20-2008, 11:48 PM
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Default Re: Observations of a fishing guide

I'm with Davo on this one. As a guide you have to see each client as an individual and start from there. I guide because I love to teach. Guiding gives me a chance to do it in an environment that I love. I try to keep the boat as stress free as possible. Most clients come to get away from stress. Catching fish seems to be a bonus to most. Guides that last focus on people and not on there own success. Success comes from helping others succeed!
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Old 03-20-2008, 11:50 PM
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Default Re: Observations of a fishing guide

Well put Greenriver!! It's their time not ours.
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Old 04-01-2008, 11:34 AM
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Default Re: Observations of a fishing guide

I don't think the original post was critical of clients, it's just what happens during the normal course of a fishing season, **** happens and every customer is at a different level of ability. Its the guides job to make the most out of that ability and hopefully the customer will walk away with something learned.

I agree with Davo and greenriverflyfisher on their post, well said. Guiding is an extension of your own self. You know what gear you need, selecting the right fly, rods, etc for the day, then imparting that knowledge to your client and hopefully the end result is a catch, but not the most important thing. I try to get my clients to relax as much as possible and enjoy the time out on the water. You make a bad cast, no big deal, learn from it and move on. Just keep thinking about the big picture and what fly fishing and nature does for the soul. Fly fishing is a life long learning process and I always tell my clients to enjoy everyday that they get a chance to get out and fish.
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