The Meaning of Guide

By Capt. Sarah Gardner


For most people, the definition of “being a fishing guide” is simply someone who takes people fishing – and gets paid to do so. Guides, on the other hand, know that there is much more to this job description, and occasionally a trip will truly challenge their skills and change the definition.

It was 3:30 in the morning, and I was wide awake – my brain still buzzing from the last trip.

Earlier, I tearfully said goodbye to a dear client and his new guest. Dave was a false albacore veteran and a world-traveling fly fisher. His partner was also an experienced trout and salmon angler, but this was her first saltwater fly experience (name withheld for privacy). Dave had already prepared me for her skill level by email. I was looking forward to working on her saltwater casting, and to creating a new albie addict.

On the first morning, he met me at the boat alone. “My friend just received a bad biopsy report. She is still in the car, on the phone with an Oncologist. Please don’t let her know I told you, but I think you need to know.”