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Thread: CATCHING NOT FISHING #2 - Bob Boese - September 26, 2011

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Bothell, WA, USA
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    Default CATCHING NOT FISHING #2 - Bob Boese - September 26, 2011


    I'm not much on fishing. I like catching. I like catching a lot. I really don't like hiring a guide who gets excited about seeing a permit or tarpon or bonefish. I want to catch one. If trout are rising, I want to catch them. If they're not, I still want to catch them. I don't want to admire bluegill or bass on their beds; I want to catch the biggest meanest orange belly or hawg in the pond. If I wanted to watch fish, I'd put on a DVD. I'm not in this sport to be a spectator.
    Last edited by rtidd; 09-25-2011 at 10:53 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Northfield, MA USA


    I am very different. I don't expect a guide to always be able to put me on fish. I expect them to try and put me on fish and to do a competent job of it. In many situations the ability to catch is effected by things not in the control of the guide.

    For me it is more the journey than the end. Some of my better days on the water involved minimal catching. The day I caught 30 striped bass was the largest mumber of fish by far, but far from the most rewarding. Now the day I figured out where to find the large striped bass on my own and caught a keeper on the fly, that was a much better day. The day before where I hooked one that got away was also pretty cool.

    If I were to consider success based on catch rate or size I would find myself having a whole lot less fun that I am having now.

    Clearly it is to each his own.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Broussard, Louisiana


    Typos stink. If a prospective guide asks if you're willing to use spinning gear DON'T go.
    Yes, it is each to his own and I'm absolutely not criticizing anyone who appreciates that fly fishing is not done in ugly locations, but that's not me. One of the greatest catching days of my life was at 11,500 feet catching six inch trout. I caught 6 before the altitude won, but the scenery from a mountain top was great...and much better because of those 6 trout.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Riverton, WY


    For me, if I hired a guide, it would be to help me learn something new, or to give me an opportunity I don't get to enjoy on my own, such as fishing from a drift boat.

    As of right now, if I were to go by myself, I'd hire a guide with the expectation to get into few but high quality fish. If I were to go with my wife or father, I'd want a guide who has patience, can help teach them the fine art of fly fishing better than me, and put us on many fish, primarily for their sake.

    I have learned one thing. I am not a guide. I can find the fish on my own, but everytime, I take my wife out fishing, we have terrible luck. heh
    Life is expensive... but it does include a free trip around the sun.
    Mottled Fly Fisher - My Fishing Blog

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    savannah, georgia


    Since this was an article about saltwater fly fishing I've gotta come to Bob's defense and say that fly fishing the south Florida flats is a whole different critter than going trout fishing or fishing for bass or sun fish in fresh water. First of all, the guides can cover a LOT of territory in a day and they charge a LOT of money. Second, the fish can also cover a lot of territory and they do so. There is vastly more habitat for them to choose from, and they take advantage of most of it. But they still have habits predicated on weather, tides, etc. These guides get paid for having the gear, knowing how to use it safely and efficiently, and knowing where the fish are WHEN in their area of operation. Generally speaking, it is a "3 strikes" sort of deal. It may take a good guide three "drops" to get on pattern on any given day down there. On tough days, it shouldn't take more than maybe 5 or 6. But he should still find fish. And fish don't stop eating. They just CHANGE their eating behavior.

    With all that said, saltwater fly fishing is a whole lot more like hunting than any other type of rod and reel fishing. This is especially true of sight-fishing on flats, where it is a matter of locating your quarry, stalking it to within casting range, and then bagging it in a vast marine environment that can be quite hostile to your goals.

    Some guides down there (like everywhere else, I guess) get very wrapped around you paying to fish with THEM instead of them getting to take YOU fishing. What I mean is that a good guide tailors the day to your abilities and goals. A "hot dog" doesn't give a rip about your abilities or goals. If you don't cast as well as he thinks you should, that's too bad for you. If he wants to go chase tarpon all day and you just want to catch something...anything...that's too bad for you. He's the Captain of this here boat! You're just paying for a ride.

    One thing that FL is eaten up with right now in the guide community is conventional tackle guides who are...by and large...pretty good anglers and charter Captains in their own right, but who are advertising that they are fly fishing guides when they have next to ZERO fly fishing expertise. That is why Bob wrote that if the guide asks you if you would mind using conventional tackle, DON'T GO! Demand a refund!!!! If they show up with more conventional gear on the boat than fly gear, demand a refund! If their boat doesn't look "fly fishing friendly," demand a refund! It is very common these days among power boat and paddle craft guides. And I am here to tell you that if a guy is not a long-time fly angler who has pulled hundreds of fish out of those local waters on the fly, he will NOT be able to put a fly angler in an advantageous position to catch fish. They are taking $$$ under false pretenses. And a bunch of the true fly fishing guides down there are being hurt by it.

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