Becoming a fishing guide

As I’ve written in other posts, I used to be a political activist. I took part in many protests and thought that I could change the world. In the end, both the world changed and myself, because when I was diagnosed with cancer, I started having a different standpoint with regard to what I had believed in up to that point. Sometimes, it matters more to be happy and have a simple life than try to shift people’s viewpoints without any success.


th1I always enjoyed fishing and used to go out on expeditions with my friends. I’ve been fishing in Alaska for over a decade and I thought I’d become a fishing guide so that I’m able to combine my passion and manage to make a living out of it, as well. This post is intended for individuals who’d like to do the same, and I’m going to try to detail as much as I can so that this info helps you. The first thing that you will need in order to make it as a fishing guide is maturity. You have to be perfectly capable of handling yourself in spite of how tricky the situation you might be in could be. Clients can be nice or rude, as in any other industry. If you were to work at a supermarket, you’d meet the same type of customers as I normally do when I’m out on fishing trips. Some people are able to leave their frustrations at home, but others aren’t, and that will take a toll on you if you can’t handle it.


th2Another quality you will need is dependability. There won’t be any day where you won’t have to prepare something for a trip or at least clean the boat or put some gas in the engine. You should never have a problem with doing this, because if you do, you’re not the man for the job. In a nutshell, you have to love fishing so much that you’re not bothered by all the other activities with the help of which you will be able to reach the fishing spot and spend some quality time on the boat. You don’t have to be a people pleaser, and it might be that many men become fishing guides mainly because they hate small talk. However, you have to be able to pitch in without being told and you need to be reliable enough to offer somebody some help when he or she needs it.


Finally, the most important quality in this game is your expertise when it comes to fishing. I’m not going to go into the geographic technicalities and tell you how important it is for you to know the area you’ll do your job in. However, even if you’ve been a fisherman for many years, you might not know anything about a certain species. If your entire life you’ve been fishing for largemouth bass and now you want to become a salmon guide in Alaska, it might pay off to do a bit of research to learn about the angling techniques as well as the biology of the fish you’ll be targeting.

A few tips for catching trout

Trout refers to different types of fish that belong to one of 3 various genera namely, salvelinus, salmo and oncorhynchus. While most trout live in freshwater such as lakes and streams with cool water, some spend their time in the ocean and only come to spawn in freshwater, pretty much like salmon. Some common types of trout include rainbow trout, lake trout, steelhead and brown trout. Trout eat aquatic invertebrates and other fish, with trout that get to be more than 12 inches big usually feeding on smaller fish. If you are to catch trout successfully, please take note of the following fishing tips.


Have the basic equipment ready.


Trout can easily break the line when pulled out of the water so you will need to have a hand net ready to land the fish. You will also need a fish stringer on which to string the fish you catch. Label this with your name and address to avoid mix ups with that of other anglers. A hemostat will facilitate the removal of swallowed hooks. Waders prove to be useful when fishing in parks that allow wading. However, waterproof boots will do just as nicely. Do make sure you know park regulations. A fishing vest helps keep your fishing essentials handy. The sun’s right2glare on your eyes can be reduced with polarized sunglasses, which also enable you to sight trout under the water more easily.

Don’t forget your rod and reel. While a standard spincast rod and reel will serve you well, other rod-and-reel combos can serve you even better. You want ultra-light rods and spinning reels that enable you to feel a strike more easily while providing greater flexibility. You want a rod 6 to 6.5 feet long to ensure better castability and easy use with a float. A light line is handled easily by an ultra-light spinning reel. You will also need #10 to #14 regular shank bronze hooks and a few small split shots when you have to present your bait in swift water. A small knife and a canvas creel will also be handy.


Bring suitable lures, baits and flies


Trout are smell and sight hunters so they detect their food sources using those two senses. That is why trout anglers bring natural and scented and colored baits. There’s a huge variety of natural trout food including crayfish, frogs allowed as baits, nightcrawlers, bait fish, insects, grubs, larvae, salmon eggs, worms, corn, bread, cheese and other food substances that are not harmful to fish including paste-type bait, putty or dough bait.

Unscented soft plastic baits include synthetic worms and synthetic eggs, soft plastic lures and synthetic grubs. Artificial lures also work fine, as do artificial lures called flies. In early season, you can use small minnows that work well when the fish are sluggish. Big brown trout are lured to a chunk of sucker meat or chub. Jigs, spinners and other minnow imitators can also get you trout.


Use the proper trout fishing method


Drift fishing can be very effective in any condition. It allows you to cover a wide area and also presents the bait to more trout. Similar to drift fishing, float fishing employs a bobber or floater. The floater has to be adjusted according to how deep the fish is. Do hook setting when you sense sudden movement on the floater. You can also fish with jigs in a variety of colors. Brown, black, white, olive, yellow or a combination of those hues proves to be effective. The easiest method is bottom fishing, which is also the most effective.


Rules for exploring the wild outdoors

There is a big chance that, for once in your lifetime you find yourself not in your normal urban habitat, but into the wild. Going into the wild is not, by any means an experience you should take lightly. A lot of people died because of unfavorable weather conditions or because they didn’t have the necessary gear with them to make it on their own out there.


The first and most general rule you need to obey to when you are on a trip in a remote place is good organization. That applies to almost anything you do: the way you pack your gear, your daily tasks, the order in which you secure the most basic needs, etc. If you are on an exploring trip, for example, it is quite important for you to manage your time properly between the main stop points. It is essential that you adapt your priorities depending on the area you are in. If the main problem is the cold, make sure you always have a tent endowed with a simple and fast installation system, if you are in a sunny area, make sure you have water provisions, etc. However, there is the so-called “rule of three” that you should always stick to. According to this principle, you can stay alive three hours without enough warmth, three days without water and three weeks without food. Thus, your priorities should mainly be approached in this order.



Leave things as you found them. The equipment and products used by travelers can affect the environment that they are inhabiting, even if for short periods of time. Dishwashing detergent and other hygiene products can severely damage species of plants and animals. As such, make sure you dispose of your garbage and leftovers properly. For better protection of the environment you should use a camping stove and keep campfires to a minimum.  Don’t leave any leftovers behind you and cover the holes you dig for human waste.


If you do light a fire, make the least possible damage to the surrounding nature: use only sticks you can pick up from the ground and that you don’t need to cut from nearby trees. If you do need branches, make sure they are unhealthy, affected by parasites and dry.


Be friendly to other visitors or to those in need. Human company is not something you are likely to enjoy into the wild, so, if you so happen to meet another person following your trail or a nearby course, you should be polite enough to make time and talk to them for a bit. Moreover, if you can help them with something need, don’t be selfish, give them as much as you can so that you can survive as well, but don’t say no if the request is reasonable, that person’s life may depend on your willingness to help them.


Great Alaskan dishes you should try

I was writing in my previous blog post about eating healthy and how you can do so by including seafood in your meals twice a week, at least. Now I realize that even though I gave some tips on what kind of fish you should in introduce in your diet, I haven’t talked about what delicious dishes you can prepare using fish. So, because I have some insight on Alaskan cuisine, I’ll share with you some simple recipes that you might like.


The first has as a main ingredient salmon (don’t forget that wild Alaskan salmon is the best option you have when it comes to avoiding the consumption of endangered species), dipped in a sauce and sprinkled with dill. What you need for it is fresh salmon fillets, mayonnaise, mustard, some fresh thyme (chopped), dried oregano, chopped basil leaves and dill (fresh or dry, but I personally prefer it fresh).

As you may have guessed, you need to prepare the sauce by mixing together the mayonnaise, mustard, thyme and add oregano and basil. In the meantime, place the salmon in a baking pan, lined with baking sheet (or aluminum foil) and preheat the oven at 190 degrees C. Once your sauce is ready, spread it on top of the salmon and bake it for about 40 minutes max. You’ll love its wonderfully refreshing taste and, at the same time, you will enjoy all its health benefits, as it is very rich in essential nutrients.


A second recipe that I cook quite often, and it’s also easy to make, as most my recipes are, is tacos with halibut. The fish you choose depends on your personal taste. I prefer using wild-caught Alaskan halibut for this dish. Yes, I know tacos are not from Alaska, but I’m using Alaskan fish and tacos are so popular everywhere that you could say they’re part of many traditional cuisines if prepared with traditional ingredients.

So how do you make these? First, you go to the supermarket and buy tortillas, some salsa and cheese for topping and you add the halibut. Then you cut the fish in medium sized pieces and fry it (you can also boil it or bake it) and season it with condiments – whatever suits your taste best. I prefer grilling it and then cutting it, but, as I said, any other method works, and it depends entirely on personal preference. However, for a good taste, I suggest that you prepare a mix of finely chopped parsley, cumin, red pepper, garlic, olive oil and salt. It would be great if you had a chopper to turn them fast into a past. If you can’t cut them really fine, add some salt and blend these ingredients until they acquire a saucy texture. You dip the fish in it and then grill it for several minutes. Then place the fish in the heated tortilla, you add raw red onion, shredded into fine strips, and finally add some salsa (guacamole works perfectly for me) and topping, and you’re good to go! Tasty and easy to make.

Add fish to your eating routine

The issue of eating healthy is something that seems to interest people much more now than it used to in the past. I remember being less worried about what I’d eat a couple of years ago, before my cancer period, but I believe eating healthy is something we should all worry about, especially now when we have less control on the ingredients that our food contains or on the cooking methods employed for our restaurant dishes. A friend of mine who traveled to China has recently told me about how they cook food in restaurants there, using huge quantities of fried oil to have it ready quicker, due to the increased number of clients. I’m not saying that doesn’t apply to the way food is cooked here, but it got me thinking to write a new blog post about how to eat healthy in the 21st century.


I guess by now everybody must know some things about good and bad foods or the fact that vegetables are mandatory and low fat foods are much better for our bodies, while a lot of fat will entail cardiac problems at a certain age, that there are some foods that are seen to be poisonous by specialists and so on. Well, I’m here to say the exact thing, but throw in some fish.

Seafood, as any good nutritionist would tell you is great if you want to live a long and happy life. There are exceptions to that nevertheless. Not all fish is good for your organism. From a general point of view, there are many advantages to be drawn from eating fish: it contains proteins, minerals and omega-3, all of which are good for your body. But, to enjoy the long-term benefits of eating fish, try eating it at least twice a week.

right1I would like to emphasize something of the utmost importance when eating fish: eat species that will not endanger the environmental balance or that are not on their way to becoming extinct. Sardines are one of the seafood varieties you can eat with no worries. They are tasty, easy to find on the market and are not expensive. Moreover, they contain a lot of nutrients and a lot of omega-3.

One other tasty fish you can eat without thinking that chances are you won’t find it in an year or two anymore is salmon, but only wild species from Alaska (other species of salmon are endangered). Its taste makes it a favorite amongst those who love fish and it can be cooked in many ways and accompanied by many other ingredients. It has a high content of omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin D.


For the moment, I wouldn’t recommend eating Bluefin tuna, as it has been added to the list of endangered species by The World Wildlife. Certainly, there are many others that should be avoided, but I know how much tuna is loved by everyone. Its numbers are, unfortunately decreasing and I’d prefer having it around for a long time.

So, there you are, some species of fish you can safely eat twice a week without fearing it will vanish because you ate too much of it and that will balance your lifestyle.

Fly fishing for beginners

Fly fishing is a technique you’re likely to learn in years and years of experience, as it can be done only with a particular kind of fly or very lightweight lure, which makes it difficult for the fisherman to cast. The line has to be unique, in that it has to be thin enough to go well with the bait, yet durable enough to hold the catch once you’ve gotten a grip on it. Some of the favorite locations for fly fishing seem to be rivers and still waters, but there’s nothing stopping you from trying out your skills at sea, as well. If you’re wondering about the species you will be able to target using this technique, we’ll put your mind at ease by telling you that it all depends on the water conditions and as such, the catch might vary. Some people manage to catch trout, others salmon, but it all really depends on what you have in mind and the place you’re going to fish in. Recently, species such as pike and perch and even carp have become quite popular among fly fishing anglers.

rightguy1rightguy2If you’re a complete beginner and hardly consider yourself well-versed in the art of fly fishing, I recommend focusing on getting the proper equipment from the beginning. Since you’re a rookie, perhaps you might benefit from utilizing a rod and reel combo instead of purchasing them separately, as you may not even know what to look for. Look at products such as the Wild Water Fly Fishing Complete Starter Package or the Crystal River Fly Fishing Combo Kit. Both of these options feature a durable construction and come with reels capable of smooth performance. Besides, you’ll notice that most of the buyers who’ve gone through the trouble of reviewing them say that they’re comfortable and convenient enough and basically come with all the extras you will be needing, regardless of the location where you plan to fish. An 8 ½-ft or 9-ft three-piece rod as well as a single action reel that can hold as much as 100 yds of floating and backing line would be an excellent addition to your equipment set.

Selecting line, waders, vests, as well as accessories can be done with ease once you’ve started to become well-acquainted with the gear you have to get so you’re able to take your fishing performance to a whole new level. Getting good fishing clothing isn’t particularly hard, especially as most of the items you’re likely to come across are reasonably priced and feature mesh parts so that you benefit from enough ventilation. What’s more, a nice pair of waders that’s lightweight and has been made with Goretex or neoprene wouldn’t hurt as these materials are water-resistant and comfortable enough to wear. Some of the common insects that are now being used in fly fishing include mayflies, stoneflies, midges, caddis, scuds and sowbugs, terrestrials, artificial flies, as well as damsels and dragons. Artificial flies are convenient as you’ll be able to use them over and over again, but it all depends on the personal preference of every angler.

How to prepare a fishing trip to Alaska

The usual fishing trip to a nearby lake, or even on the shores of the ocean has nothing in common with preparing to go fishing in Alaska – unless you live there, in which case you are probably aware of the risks. Some may be wondering why take a trip to Alaska to fish?

Here you can simply enjoy the nature and your life

Here you can simply enjoy nature and your life

Alaska’s climate conditions make it an amazing ecosystem with an unparalleled biodiversity. As such, it is a great spot to observe wildlife, admire gorgeous landscapes and fish for rare species of fish, such as the Arctic Grayling that is one of the most sought after species among fishermen. If you’re brave enough, you can go fish in the wilderness, in places barely touched by any humans. It is understandable why an amateur fisherman would dream of such a trip. However, as previously mentioned, a trip to Alaska, even for fishing purposes, is not like any other and you need to plan it carefully.

alaska2First things first, before you go to Alaska, check for meteorological conditions in the chosen period. Unfavorable weather will ruin your trip and can even put you and your friends in danger. If you’re going there to catch a particular species of fish, it is recommended you ask what the optimal period for fishing that species is before arriving there and be disappointed.

Contact a fishing trip facility that you can find in great numbers in the area. Alaska is no small piece of land and, though many facilities offer fishing gear, lodging and even local guides to accompany you in unknown territory, you must be assured before you get there that the spot you picked is able to provide you with all these and even more. In addition, if you have a certain remote area you would like to visit, check what transportation means are available. Some regions are only reachable by plane, which will add to the overall costs of the trip.

Maybe you consider a guide to be an unnecessary addition to your trip and you hope you can spare some money by going there by yourself. However, you shouldn’t rely on your survival skills in Alaska, so taking a guide with you is of the utmost importance.

Don’t forget that a fishing trip to Alaska will require more than basic fishing equipment. Generally, you need heavy-duty rods and bait to be able to catch fish on Alaskan waters, as big species of fish are common. Having two or three different rods, to be used for various species and fishing settings is the best way to ensure that you also catch something. It goes the same for the rest of your gear, the more diversified the better.


Don’t forget to pack warm clothes, and waterproof equipment. As mentioned, some fishing accommodation centers provide specialized clothing and gear for fishing, but, just to be sure, you can bring at least the basic waterproof equipment. Don’t forget packing sunscreen as well, before you leave home – the sun shines brightly in the Alaskan summer and it does so for many hours.

If you’re planning a longer trip, with various areas you would like to visit, make sure you have maps of the areas and GPS technology to help you find your way back in case you get lost.

Best Rivers for Salmon Fishing in Alaska

Alaska is one of the most beautiful places for fishing in the entire world, and I am glad that I can say that based on my experience and no one else’s. Anyone who travels in this area will be amazed with the bountiful number of fishing spots that can be counted by the hundreds. You will discover amazing places if you ever plan on traveling to Alaska, and especially you will find a lot of salmon. With so many species of salmon to choose from, you will only need to plan your trip right. Here are some of the best rivers for salmon fishing in Alaska. I hope my little list will help you.


Kenai River

Alaska. Kenai Peninsula. Kenai River, fly fisherman, and raft. MR.

I know that it is a bit of a stretch to name this river, because there are so many different spots along it where you can enjoy salmon fishing, that just a simple mention will not do it justice. I will try to list a few of these fishing spots so you can make a good decision for your next fishing trip. For instance, Moose Meadows is a great spot for coho and sockeye salmon. The place is good for people in wheelchairs, because they can use the flat metal platform installed here, so they can fish from their wheelchairs. Cunningham Park is another great spot, and it is ideal for silver and sockeye salmon. Be aware that here the water tends to rise and fall and you need to adjust your lure to score a catch. Bing’s Landing is another good spot for sockeye salmon, also located on Kenai River.


Pasagshak River


Here you will find some basic camping accommodations, so if you do right Pasagshaknot mind not being able to enjoy the latest advancements in lodging, this could be a great place for you. Located close to the Lake Rose Tead, and very short for a river, this one is ideal for sockeye salmon fishing. The lake is the salmon’s favorite spawning place, which is why you will really maximize your chances of catching plenty of salmon if you camp in this area.


Ninilchik River


While this is a great spot for king salmon, be aware that the fishing season is very right ninilchicklimited and this species of salmon is not that easy to find because it is not very abundant. Nonetheless, if you manage to catch one, you will really have someone to brag about upon your return home.


Some of these places can be chilly sometimes. I recommend you make sure you have the best fishing clothes to avoid getting ill and feel comfortable while you are fishing. From all the articles present on Fisher Pants, I like the fishing shoes the most.

My New Mission in Life

I want to welcome everyone to my blog. A little bit about me first. I used to be a political activist and there was no protest where I was not involved. I believed in government conspiracy theories and I was constantly trying to expose them. I was reading a lot of stuff related to these theories and I believed I could do something to change the world and save it from its leaders. This is not, however, how I discovered what is most important in life.


Seven years ago, I was diagnosed with bladder cancer. My whole life turned upside down. I no longer cared about conspiracy theories and who needed me to protest who knew where. I wanted nothing but to get better, and after several surgical interventions and chemotherapy, I beat it. I beat cancer and I was finally free to breathe and dream again.


But I no longer wanted to go back to my usual way of living. I lost all interest in political activism and I decided to focus more on living and less on complaining about the things I hated. I discovered that life could be lived differently, and while having cancer was a frightening experience, its fight with it taught me a valuable lesson.

world traveler

I started traveling all over the world, and now I have quite a few stories to tell stashed in my brain. I have been to so many beautiful places, and I have discovered so many things that I want to share them all with the world. I am currently working as a fishing guide in Alaska, and I must tell you that it is a dream job for me. Besides the fact that I get to spend a lot of times outdoors when I am working (how many white collar workers can say that?), I get in touch with people and I am capable of educating them about the beauty of nature and how to preserve it.

fishing guide

This blog will be about the places I’ve been to, about fishing, and about how to love nature. I hope you will become as passionate as me about these things and that you will find something useful in my small recounts about the places I’ve seen. I will continue to publish blog posts on this website and stay in touch with everyone who shares the same interests as me. I hope you will become one of my readers.


Until next time, stay in good health!