A majority of our guides have over 10 years experience of guiding in the area; those below that mark are really close. I only hire guides that I have personally fished with and I want to represent my company. What does that mean to me? Being on time for pick ups, having a clean truck and boat, dressing professionally, understanding the clients' wants and needs, giving that extra effort and working harder than many other guides out there. That means treating your clients like they are the only clients you have for the week even though you worked the past 20 days straight. You won't find any fly by night guides working here. We don't hire college kids that are looking for a few extra bucks in the summer. All our guides are experienced, professional teachers that love what they do and want to share their experience with you.
After saying that, there is definitely a seniority list. The most senior guides get booked first, then down the chain it goes. I feel confident that all the guides I employ do a great job, but experience does count for something. Because we do many trips out of the area, specifically the Missouri River, I use local (Craig, MT) guides primarily to guide this destination as they are intimate with this 50 miles of river. They are in high demand in the area and booking early allows me to secure them before they are booked up. There are some great Missouri River guides in the Bozeman area; depending on your specific needs I also hire Bozeman guides, and sometimes Craig, MT guides. The point is if you want the A-list guides, it is imperative that you book your trip as early as possible. If you wait till a month out from your dates, I will do my best, but that is all I can promise.
So how early should you book? As early as possible for a few reasons. The first being you will be assigned my best guides. Secondly, if you want to fish the Missouri River, lodging is a quite a headache. With limited lodging, the earlier you book the easier it is to find a place to stay. Thirdly, it allows more time to answer any questions that arise about the trip. It is not uncommon for clients to book 6-8 months out to ensure they have their guides and lodging secured. This makes it easy for both the clients and the outfitter to handle all the logistics to ensure a great trip. I know that this won't fit into everyone's schedule, but those who do book early feel assured that every detail is taken care of.
So in closing, the more time you book in advance, the easier the booking process happens. The lodging is easier to book, the best guides are available, and you know that you’ll have a great fishing trip with Montana Trout Wranglers.