Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Here we go!

Not quite sure how to start this whole blog deal! I know I'm a bit late to step up to the plate and start blogging. Truth is, I don't visit many blogs... maybe that's why it has taken me so long to start one. I really enjoy writing and hope to someday have a book published, maybe an instructional compilation, or even a story of my crazy life chasing fish. I'm finally following the sound advice of my friends and clients and taking a step in the right direction with creating this blog. If nothing else, it gives people a chance to stay in touch and read my current ramblings.

First off, a bit about me. I started guiding in Alaska eleven years ago on the Kenai Peninsula. I was a 16 year old punk with a dream to become the fishiest guide on the water! Needless to say, I worked my tail off and spent as much time around the best mentors I could have ever asked for. I saw a lot of big trout and got a shot guiding steelhead trips on the south peninsula, which quickly became my favorite fishery.

Togiak King= Happy Nate
Autumn days waking up at 3:30 am, chasing tide-fish coming in on the morning tide, it was fast-paced guiding fueled by caffeine and an obsession with putting people on fish. I was humbled many times over these two years, and finally lost my cocky "fishiest guide on the water" attitude!

My lovely wife
By my third season, I found myself out west guiding in the Wood-Tikchik system and Togiak National Wildlife Refuge for Bristol Bay Lodge, where I still work today. For the past five years, I've done much less guiding during the season than I would like, but I have no complaints. My job on our management team involves a lot more than making sure people catch fish, but I find myself guiding as much as I possibly can. I enjoy the fast-paced insanity and long hours of the summer season. Not to mention BBL has about the most intense fishing program available anywhere! It's a been great operation to be apart of from all aspects of the business.

I currently reside in Ellensburg, Washington where my wife, Janessa and I work for the lodge in our winter office and caretake on a nearby ranch. I have worked a bit here and there guiding and working for a few local fly-shops back in my college days, but I don't find myself on the Yakima much anymore. I currently work with a pretty motley crew as a gypsy steelhead guide here in Washington.

I enjoy the heck out of all types of hunting and often find my most intense moments on the water occur when I'm actually "hunting" fish. I think this is why I enjoy being a steelhead guide so much.

I enjoy the prep-work for guiding or fishing almost as much as I enjoy actually being on the water. I'm a bit of a gear-head and love figuring out the next-best system, so you'll probably find quite a few gear reviews on this blog in the future!

I love the tying aspect of fly fishing and I'm obsessed with flies. I tie a lot and create patterns for what I think is the best fly company out there, Idylwilde Flies.

I'm very blessed to be able to make a living in this industry. I look forward to documenting my crazy adventures as my obsession takes me to fisheries both far and near. I'll do my best to update trip reports, fishing reports, and photos several times a week. Thanks for reading!

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