“Do I really need a guide?” is usually one of the first questions asked from anglers going on their first fishing trip. It’s impossible to accurately answer that question with a “yes” or a “no”, but we can give you the information you need to know to answer the question by yourself.
Guides can be worth having as long as you know exactly what you’re getting. For example, most people don’t realize hiring a guide is no guarantee you’re going to catch a trophy fish. The guide will take you to the places known to have fish, but catching them is still up to you.
If you don’t know what you’re doing, the guide can only help you so much. However, if that’s the case, a guide may be well worth it to you. Since you will be arriving at a lake you’ve never been on before, and you only have a few days to catch fish… a guide can really be a big help. Without a guide, you could spend days just trying to find out where the fish are.
Most guides are great anglers themselves. They spend all spring and summer on the lake and know what works and what doesn’t. Here are some things to discuss with any potential guide so you can see if you want to hire him:
-The type of fish you want to catch
-Whether you’re looking to catch lots of fish, or just trophy sized fish
-Has the guide ever fished for the species you’re after?
-What technique will the guide expect you to use?
This is what you’ll typically get when you hire a guide:
-Expert advice on the best locations to fish
-Expert tips on how to best catch your fish
-A well prepared, delicious shore lunch
You must decide if the above is worth paying the price for a guide.
Not to be overlooked is another option to considered. You can hire a guide for just a day or two (be up front about this) and then use his (or her) advice on what to do the rest of your fishing trip. This will save you money and still get you that expert advice you’re looking for.
Now, if you’re going on a fly-in fishing trip to a lake that you know (from your research and talking to others) is full of fish… you probably don’t need a guide! There, I even answered your original question for you. That’s because lots of the remote lakes have so many fish that even a beginner couldn’t help catching all they want.
How much does a guide cost? You can expect to pay anywhere from $100 to $200 per day plus a tip of around $25 per person. So, it simply becomes a matter of how much help a guide can be to you, and whether you’re willing to pay for the service.
There, now you can decide if you want to hire a fishing guide. Here’s to you and fishing!