Finding the right professional Lake Tahoe Fishing Guide is critical to having a successful outing. Here are 5 Tips that will help you pick the right Lake Tahoe Fishing Guide for your next visit.
1 How Experienced of a Fisherman Are You?
Picking the right Fishing Guide on Lake Tahoe starts with how much experience you have in the type of fishing you want to do on your adventure. Depending on the type of fishing that you want to do, some guides would prefer to guide fishermen with with a bit more knowledge and experience. This is more common in the fly fishing community than it is with a guide on a Charter boat.
If are new to this type of fishing you will want to find a fishing guide that is as much of a teacher as they are a guide. Also, if you have younger fishermen in your group then you will want to make sure that the fishing guide you select is good with kids. For instance taking someone to technical fly fishing waters that has not fly fished before could be a bit of a challenge.
When selecting your fishing guide ask them the following questions:
Do you provide instruction?
Do you enjoy fishing with novice fishermen or kids?
Do you have patience with people that are just learning?
2. What Type of Fishing Do You Want to Do?
The waters of Lake Tahoe and the surrounding areas offer a myriad of different types of fishing such as trolling, jigging, fly fishing, spey fishing, ice fishing, etc. Just because someone is a fishing guide doesn’t make then an expert in all the different types of fishing available in the Lake Tahoe region.
If a Lake Tahoe fishing guide tells you that they prefer to fly fish from the bank, but you are wanting to fish from a boat then this is probably not the guide for you. Find a guide that has extensive experience in fishing that way that you are wanting to fish. Just and FYI< kids and novice fishermen generally have a much better experience fishing from a boat then a walk and wade type experience.
Also make sure that the guide you select has enough equipment and tackle for everyone that will be fishing. Stay clear of a guide that tells you that you can share rods and reels. There is nothing worse that setting on a boat watching other people fish, waiting for your turn.
Questions you may want to ask a fishing guide are:
What type of fishing do you spend most of your time doing?
Where are some of the favorite places you take your clients?
What type of equipment and accessories do you provide?
3. What Type of Water Do You Want to Fish?
In the Lake Tahoe area, there are many different types of water that you can fish. We have fast moving high mountain streams, leisurely winding rivers, small alpine lakes and of course the majestic Lake Tahoe.
If your dream is to fish a high mountain stream and wade for native rainbow trout then hiring a guide that spends the majority of their time trolling in big lakes is probably not the right one for you. Conversely, Stay clear of a guide with a 12′ open bow boat if you want to fish Lake Tahoe for a day.
Questions you may want to ask Lake Tahoe fishing guides about the waters they fish:
Do you generally take people out in a boat or do you wade?
What types of Rods do you supply?
Are you on Pro Staff with any manufactures?
4. What Species of Fish Do You Want to Fish For?
Although most fishing guides have experience with different types of fishing, they tend to have a favorite species of fish that they prefer to go after. A number of times when I mention to a guide that I want to fish for a certain species of fish I have been told, “I don’t personally fish for that species, but I can refer you to someone who does”. I have tremendous respect for these guides honesty.
You may also want to ask a Lake Tahoe fishing guide how they typically fish for a certain species of fish. If they say they enjoy site fishing for Lake Trout with dry flies, you may want to turn and run, they don’t know what they are talking about.
Here is a quick guide for fishing various species in the Lake Tahoe area:
Lake Trout Found in the deeper sections of the larger lakes
Rainbow Trout Found in lakes (generally in shallow waters) and rivers
Brown Trout Found in lakes and rivers
Cutthroat Trout Found in small streams
Questions you may want to ask a guide you are talking with:
What is your favorite species of fish to fish for?
What times of the year are the best fishing?
What did you fish for today?
5. Do You Want to Fish to Fill A Cooler oR Put A Fish on Your Wall?
Different fishermen fish for various reasons. Some want to catch their limits and bring back to the family a cooler full of fish for dinner. Others want to fish for Trophy sized fish and get some photos for their office or den.
Knowing the type of fishing a guide does most can tell you a lot about the types of trips they offer. If on their website you see pictures of fishermen kneeling in rapids displaying their most recent catch then that gives you a pretty good idea of the type of fishing experience you are going to have.
Questions you have want to ask are:
Do you need us to bring a cooler to bring home our fish?
Do you fillet and portion the fish for us?
Do you encourage catch and release?
How To Research A Lake Tahoe Fishing Guide
websites are a great way to determine if your expectations will be met or not. Take a look at their gallery pages, you will get a very good idea of what you can expect.
Another place to research guides is through the various business review sites such as Google Business, Trip Advisor, and Yelp. Typically, businesses with more than 10 current reviews with an average star rating of 4.2 or better will give you a great experience.
In closing, selecting the right fishing guide can make the difference between a good fishing trip and the fishing trip of a lifetime. If you trip is a few weeks or months out spend some time researching the type of fishing that is available, when various species of fish are being caught and what type of fishing people are doing.
In Lake Tahoe the signature species that most people want to experience catching is our Lake Trout, also known as Mackinaw. The best Mackinaw fishing is in the deeper parts of the Lake. We fish for them mainly by jigging special lures and flies. The nice thing about Lake Trout is that they can be caught 12 months out of the year.
Catching a 5 to 10-pound Mackinaw (Lake Trout) is fairly common, and fish in excess of 30 pounds can also be found. We hear day in and day out from people we have taken fishing is that they just caught the biggest fish of their life.
We hope our suggestions have been helpful. Mile High Fishing Charters is a professional Lake Tahoe Fishing Guide and Charter company. We are one of just a handful of guides that will fish 12 months out of the year. Give us a call and let us help you determine if a Trophy Lake Trout trip is what you are looking for.