Hiring a guide is the best way to get the most out of your fishing experience. You will spend less time wandering around trying to find the best spots and more time catching fish.

Hiring guides has made a big impact on the development of our fly fishing skills over the years. Since my husband and I don’t live in a fly fishing haven – West Texas – our opportunities to fish do not come often. Sure, we’ve had plenty of practice on farm ponds, which we love, but bluegill don’t exactly mimic the same behaviors as river trout or redfish. So, when we have made trips to central Texas, Colorado, Arkansas, the East Coast, or more recently Montana, hiring a guide allows us to maximize our time on the water while learning a thing or two along the way.

I cringe when I think about some of the rookie mistakes we likely made on our first guided fly fishing trip. We really had no idea what to expect, nor were we aware of typical guide-client etiquette. Basically, we just did whatever the guide told us to do, and everything worked out fine. We were fortunate on our first guided trip to have hired a real gem of a guide in Southwestern Colorado. He not only took great care of us, but his professionalism helped us create a life long obsession with the art of fly fishing. He also unintentionally taught us about our responsibilities as a client.

Unlike golf, there is no written rulebook that explains client etiquette on guided fishing trips. But, there are several unwritten rules (and common sense) that are important to adhere to while you’re on the water. Here are a few tips to help you make the most of your next guided trip without driving your guide crazy.


Lindsay Kennedy
About the Author

Lindsay and her husband Byron live in Lubbock, Texas, when they're not traversing the lower 48 in search of the next hookup. Follow her on Instagram at @lindsay_onthefly.