Why hire a Guide?
Different fishermen will receive different benefits from a guided trip. Professional Fishermen on the tournament circuits hire guides when they fish new water, why shouldn’t you?
So, the right question is not “Who needs a guide?”, but “What can I gain by hiring a Guide?”
Guides are a different kind of person; they live for fishing. Guides are passionate about what they do and want to be able to share that knowledge and experience with other fisherman. They eat, sleep and drink fishing. They can fish from sun up to sun down and still want more. When they are off the water, they are thinking about how they can make their day better, what they learned and how to improve. Guides are a happy group, they love what they do and the life they have, they wouldn’t trade it for anything else. They fish to live and live to fish. The opportunity they have to take clients out on the water and teach them new skills and help them become better on the water is the most rewarding for them. Whether they are taking out a seasoned fisherman or a beginner, seeing the looks on their face when they catch their first trophy bass. Nothing can replace that feeling.
There are so many resources available today, fishing reports, maps, internet blogs, all trying to help folks find the next big bite. They are useful but for the most part, cannot give you all the information you need to fish effectively in only a few short hours. It will never replace the knowledge you can receive from a guide who has fished the area for years. A fishing report may tell you what bass where caught on the day before and close to where they were but once you get there and they aren’t biting then what? A guide can adjust and find the right bait to use to bring them to the boat. He has learned through trial and error, he has spent many frustrating days figuring it out and knows what works and what doesn’t.
Some fisherman struggle with the ability to figure out new waters quickly, so if you are going to spend the money traveling, on hotels, on rental equipment, etc., why not hire a guide early on to help and learn valuable information. Utilize the guides knowledge of the area and find out what to look for, where to fish, what baits work and what doesn’t. It will make your trip much more enjoyable.
Any level of fisherman can learn from a guide. Beginners will learn more in one day with a guide than spending several days on their own trying to figure it out. Guides love the opportunity to teach people and help them. Every guide has their own techniques so even an experienced fisherman will end up learning a thing or two.
Communication is also the key to a successful trip. Please make sure you let them know what you are expecting out of the trip, what you are expecting from them. Ask questions, whether it is about the equipment to use, the baits or just overall what key points to look for when trying to find fish. You have to remember not only is this their job, to take clients out on the water, this is their passion and they live for this.
Don’t try to tell the guide that you know what you are doing he will soon catch on. Let him know your level of skills ahead of time, so he can tailor the trip to your abilities. If you are physically challenged or have a handicap this should be told to the person who is booking the trip so it can be handled before you head out.
The guide you hire should be a professional and should be treated with respect. You can help with a bag or rod if he looks like he needs help. He will help you with your equipment if you need it. If you’re fishing with a partner don’t help your partner out let the guide do that. It’s great to offer encouragement, but don’t interrupt while the guide is attempting to instruct.
Expectations: You are paying a bit for a guided trip and you expect to catch fish. You need to check his references, referrals or testimonials from the guys who have experienced these trips. There are no guarantees you will catch fish every time you go out.