Columbine Outfitter/Guide School
Class Schedule and Basic Itinerary
· First Aid and CPR (Environmental Application)
· Casting and Fishing Skills
· Teaching and Lesson Planning Techniques
· Conversation and people Skills
· Guide Responsibility and Equipment
· Philosophy, Ethics, and Conservation
· Organization and Analysis of Short and Long Trip
· Streamside and Camp Cookery
· Working with Handicapped
· Watercraft Operation and River Navigation
· Water Rescue and Safety
· Outdoor Leadership
· Business and Management
· First Aid and CPR
· Casting and Teaching
· Watercraft operation and River Navigation
· Camp and Streamside Cookery
Sunday – Arrival at NOON and orientation
Monday – 1st Aid and
casting orientation and evening lecture
Tuesday – Fly tying class and evening
Wednesday – Fishing and evening
Thursday – Camp and streamside
Friday – Fishing and camping orientation,
field lecture, exam
Saturday – Fishing and trip organization,
Sunday – Water rescue and safety,
float and rowing instruction, evening lecture, exam
Monday – Float and rowing instruction,
Tuesday – Float and rowing instruction,
Wednesday – Finals: drift boat evaluation, casting evaluation, written exam
Thursday – Graduation with breakfast
School lasts a total of 12 days with the first and last days being
Our schools in Colorado and in Wyoming are
the same except for the watercraft training. The Colorado school will train in raft operation; the Wyoming
school will train in drift boat operation. Certification of river miles rowed with a trainer are certified and solo trips
are documented for qualification in states that require documented training.
During your guiding
career, you will encounter a wide variety of people and fishing situations. A primary concern for you as a guide is your guest’s
safety, and this aspect will be threaded throughout the curriculum, whether it’s walk/wade or floating. To be successful as a guide you must be flexible and able to lead people under many different water situations
and weather conditions. We will be looking at basically two different arenas of leadership such as: Walk/Wade on a variety
of waters, and Float-Fishing from a watercraft. You will be exposed to as many facets of these areas as possible. You will
be exposed to small streams and creeks, alpine lakes and cow ponds, and large rivers. You will finish with float-fishing from
a drift boat and learning river navigation. All of these waters will expose you to a wide variety of strategies, techniques,
and safety requirements.
The skills required of you as a guide are certified, some of the areas of certification are:
1) Casting and Teaching - developing good casting and fishing skills are essential. Also, the ability to impart that
skill to your guests, by performing formal lessons or graciously sharing helpful knowledge to a skilled angler will greatly
increase your value as a guide.
2) Drift Boat and/or Raft Operation
and River Navigation – it is also essential to acquire and master knowledgeable operating skills so that you may
give your guests maximum safety and fishing potential, thus getting down the river without incident. You are responsible for
the lives of your passengers. 3) Meal Preperation and Presentation - Although this does not seem to be an important
aspect to being a guide, many outfitters utilize this part of a guests adventure as a premier selling point. A well thought-out
and well planned lunch on the water is a delightful experience and will gain you valuable points with your clients. 4)
Handicapped Capable - Your employer will very much appreciate the fact that you have skills to deal with this potential
customer. It opens up a new spectrum of business for the outfitter and your services will be well rewarded.
Your communication skills, your ability to cope and deal with people, and how
well you develop your people skills will determine the direction of your career. There are few people who make guiding a career.
It is a great way to make a living for those who are footloose and fancy-free (basically fish bums) or those who want to guide
on a part-time basis. If you want to run your own show and become an outfitter,
you must have a propensity to taking care of your guests. You will need to provide a quality fishing experience with the knowledge
to put the customer onto fish, but PRIMARILY to provide a quality recreational experience that will out weigh any fish caught.
You will also need to
take care by tracking them, taking pictures, and corresponding with them and maintaining the relationship established during
your brief time with them. Hopefully these efforts will entice them to take future trips and move up from being a customer
to becoming a client.
school will teach you these aspects of being a professional and more. Through your guide school experience you will develop a
new perspective of what guiding is about. You will also develop and hone your fishing skills through application on the water.
All your skills will be documented and certified and added to your resume. We will look forward to presenting you
to several of our prospective employers from our data base. We have potential employers in a variety of businesses in
the hospitality and service related industries.