Wednesday, March 26, 2014

A Guide's Guide

On the Deschutes river one year, I was guiding two clients for summer Steelhead. My son Chris was along to help with the camp duties, and when his work was done he would do some fly fishing on his own.

The first day was unproductive for my clients, but Chris was catching and releasing quite a few trout. When the next day passed without any Steelhead, my clients were starting to grumble a little. I quickly went into my normal guide routine of offering reasons why they weren’t catching fish by saying things like, the water was on the rise, the fish had moved upstream, the water was getting too warm, and so on. In those situations you still have to be upbeat and positive and give them a ray hope. Finally, at the end of the following day they each had a strike but no solid hookups.

The next morning we decided to fish our way downstream, and I put them in a classic run that was usually productive. In the meantime, Chris went above them and began to fish for trout in some pocket water. Suddenly, he hooked what he thought was a big trout. He played it for six or seven minutes, but it turned out to be an eight pound Steelhead with a dark caddis nymph it its mouth. After the release, one of my clients laughed and said jokingly, “Chris, from here on out you’re gonna be our guide!”

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