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The Pros And Cons Of Light Salmon Guiding

The Pros And Cons Of Light Salmon Guiding

Good Salmon fishing Guides are without doubt worth their weight in gold, there are very few Salmon anglers who would ague with that, but is it necessary to have one on your shoulder the whole time?

Having been involved with running a Salmon lodge in the past I have seen on so many occasions where guides have turned tough days in to successful ones with there intricate knowledge of where the taking fish are in the conditions on the day. The choice of what style of guiding is best suited to You comes down to four things, your preference, your experience, the river and your budget.

Obviously, when you book a weeks Salmon fishing at a lodge the week is geared towards your enjoyment and if it suites you better to either have a guide with you at all times or not is how it will be as long as this was the arrangement with the lodge prior to your arrival. For many Salmon anglers the guiding status is not a major issue as they just want to catch a Salmon with or without a guide, this is when some thought can be used to pick a guiding package that will best serve your needs.

Experience

Your level of experience is a huge factor when looking at a lodges guiding programme, I would never suggest that an inexperienced Salmon angler should hit the river without a guide present at all times. Not only would this be a disaster for your fishing but this would actually be quite dangerous. In virtually all Salmon lodges you will be on a rotation with a fishing partner, as long as enough water is provided by the lodge then fishing in this way is much better as it provides safety and comradery. If you are an experienced angler who is a competent wader then fishing in a light guiding set up can be very rewarding.

Light Guiding

Once the guide has talked you through the pools that you are to fish and suggested what lines and flies to try, being left on the river with just your fishing partner can be brilliant. On tough days, by the time you are starting to run out of ideas, your guide will be back to fill you full of a fresh sense of enthusiasm. On the better days looking and landing a Salmon with just your fishing partner there to take the photo is one of the best feelings in fishing.

River and Fish Size

The river and the size of fish that run it should also be considered. You can be the most experienced Salmon angler ever to grace the earth but if you hook a 30lb+ fresh fish in a big powerful river and it decides it wants to go back to sea, you won’t stand a chance. When fishing big rivers for big fish I would always recommend having a guide present at all times, I have personally seen on a couple of occasions fish that have had to be followed by boat a couple of kilometres before being landed. Often as the season progresses on the big fish rivers the water becomes much less powerful and also a little bit warmer and the fish starts to lose its advantage. Late season is when experienced anglers can very successfully target big fish in a light guiding programme as long as your fishing partner is willing to help with the landing and of course the photographing.

Reduced Cost

Another huge plus of light guiding at a lodge is that it reduces the cost. In some of the best European Salmon countries the best guides can be expensive so if you are in the position where you can share this cost between more anglers it will work out less expensive.

It is always worth considering the factors above and in many situations you are far better off having a guide between just two of you. When looking to book a Salmon fishing holiday its worth thinking about your personal experience, the river and the fishing but it can be very rewarding and cost-effective to go down the light guiding route.

Want to learn more about our light guiding holidays and the benefits? If so contact our team who will be happy to answer any questions you have.

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