Booking your trip

How far in advance should I book my trip?

The short answer: ASAP. The sooner you get it in your calendar, the sooner you can look forward to your trip. Our smallmouth schedule fills up especially fast with most prime dates taken by the end of April. Don’t be afraid to book a year out if your schedule permits.

I’m a beginner at fly fishing—are these trips for me?

We pride ourselves on teaching. You’re not alone, we take out greenhorns all the time, we’ve all got to start somewhere right? Hiring a guide is one of the best ways to learn.

Preparing for your trip

What should I bring along?

See our Pre-Trip Checklist page for trip-specific information.

What size rod do I need?

This depends on the type of fish you'll be catching:

  • Trout: 3-5 weight, 8.5-9 ft.
  • Smallmouth: 7-8 weight, 9 ft.
  • Toothy Critters: 8-12 weight, 9 ft.

What time does my trip start?

This is dependent on the time of year and the conditions the day of fishing. Generally speaking, we will start between the hours of 6AM – 9AM.

How long is a “guide day”?

  • Full day – 8 hours (with lunch)
  • 3/4 day - 6 hours (no lunch)
  • Half day – 4 hours (no lunch)

Please be courteous of our time, our guide has been paid for said amount of time, staying past that time should not be expected. If you are out longer than your given time, be sure to thank your guide as they are doing you a favor and still need to clean their boat and prepare for the next day’s guide trip.

Do we still fish if the weather is bad?

Weather is uncontrollable, that’s the bottom line. Bad weather doesn’t always mean bad fishing however. Some of our best days have been on some of the most challenging days weather-wise. We will fish rain or shine as long as we are safe (no lightning). If there is wiggle room to reschedule we will allow you the option. This is on a trip by trip basis. Come prepared to fish in whatever mother nature throws at us. 

Should I tip my guide?

Tipping your guide is standard in the fly fishing and outdoor industry as a whole. Generally, as a starting point, consider tipping your guide 10% of the trip cost. If the guide went above and beyond it wouldn't be unusual to increase your tip to 15% or even 20%.

Payments, cancellations and refund policy

Do you require a deposit?

We require a 50% deposit on ALL trips to hold your spot. In some instances deposits are non-refundable, please see our cancellation section below for more details.

When is my full balance due?

Due dates for the full payment of your trip balance vary depending on the type of trip you booked. Your invoice will have your exact due date listed, but here is the rule of thumb.

DAY TRIPS: Full payment is due on or before the day of fishing.

OVERNIGHT CAMPS: Full payment is due 14 days before the start of camp.

DESTINATION TRIPS: Full payment is due 90 days before departure.

What is your cancellation policy?

Cancellations and refunds vary depending on the type of trip. Below is each of our policies:

DAY TRIPS: Cancellations made at least 14 days prior to the scheduled date will receive a full refund. Cancellations made within 13-7 days prior to the scheduled date will forfeit 50% of the cost of the trip. Cancellations made less than 7 days prior to the scheduled date of the trip will forfeit the full cost of the trip unless a suitable replacement can be found to fill the spot.

OVERNIGHT CAMPS: Cancellations made at least 45 days prior to the scheduled date will receive a full refund. Cancellations made within 44-30 days prior to the scheduled date will forfeit the 50% trip deposit. Cancellations made less than 29 days prior to the scheduled date of the trip will forfeit the full cost of the trip unless a suitable replacement can be found to fill the spot.

DESTINATION TRIPS: Cancellations made outside of 90 days are eligible for a refund of payments, less a non-refundable $500 handling charge taken out of the deposit. Cancellations inside of 90 days are not eligible for a refund of payment unless a suitable replacement can be found to fill the spot. Deposits and final payments for travel packages are non-refundable inside of 90 days, so it is highly recommended that you purchase medical, travel or trip insurance if you must cancel your trip for any reason.

What payment options do you offer?

We accept cash, check, electronic bank transfer, or Zelle. Zelle is our preferred method and you can use the account (FlyPhoto LLC) to make a payment - please reference your trip type/date in the notes. We can also accept credit cards with the addition of a 3% transaction fee, please email us a request if you prefer to pay with a credit card.

Lodging and accommodations

Which trips offer overnight camping?

We host several fully outfitted camps each season that include overnight accommodations (camping or housing). These include Spring/Fall Trout Camp, Crash Camp, Frogs'n Footballs, and our Fall Toothy Camp. We also have the ability to put together a Custom Camp for your group of anglers, but dates fill fast so please contact us early. Other folks prefer to book multiple day trips in a row and we are happy to recommend lodging and dining options.

Do you have suggestions for places to stay around the area?

If you plan to stay in the area, please let us know and we will help you find lodging that fits your needs. For starters, check out our Lodging Accommodations (PDF) list.

Allergies & special needs

I have a food allergy or dietary restrictions, what should I do?

First thing is to inform us of your concern. We will do our best to fit your needs but cannot guarantee it. You may be asked to provide your own food option.