Fly Fishing Guides on Manistee River - Wellston Michigan
Schmidt Outfitters has five full time fly fishing-only guides and provides professional fly fishing guide services on many famous Michigan rivers and streams, including the Manistee River, Big Manistee, Little Manistee, Upper Manistee, Pine River, Pere Marquette River, and more. We have operated our guide service full time since 1976.
Many anglers and guides forge relationships that last for their entire lives, sometimes the relationship is even passed from one generation to another. Why? Many believe that once the relationship is bonded, there is a special confidence that develops between the two. The angler is certain that “his" or "her" guide is simply the best and no other will do. A certain sense of familiarity exists in knowing what each other is thinking and the harmony is sometimes uncanny. This can be the way the guide moves or stops the boat, a special movement of the oars when the guide approaches a favorite spot, the increased anxiety when a “big one” is with-in range. The client just knows.
Guiding anglers is a proud profession and no one takes the job more seriously than the guide, wanting nothing more than his or her client to have enjoyed the day pursuing the fish of their dreams. At Schmidt’s we take our job as fishing guides very seriously, we want nothing more than your satisfaction.
John GoukerJohn lives in Irons, Michigan with his wife Chasity, his son Ajae, and Chesapeake Bay retriever, Baylor.
He is a lifetime angler, a professional fly fishing guide, fly tyer, and instructor in our fly fishing schools.
John enjoys chasing all types of cold and warm water species, from trout to smallmouth. He specializes in walk or float trips on the Little Manistee River and kayak-fishing the backwaters.
John fished extensively in his native Nevada, as well as northern California, Oregon, and Vancouver Island (British Columbia.) He has also travelled to fish the Patagonia region in Chile; Cabo San Lucas, Mexico; and the north shore of Lake Superior in Ontario, Canada.
Gary has been an avid fisherman all his life, but in the last 20 years, fly fishing has become a passion. He fishes all type of species, but prefers salmon and steelhead to others. He started salmon and steelhead fishing on the Pere Marquette 35 years ago. He enjoyed fishing that river up until he and his wife, Christine, moved to Wellston. He has fished the Manistee river system for the past 10 years and has grown to enjoy it as much as the Pere Marquette. Gary enjoys tying flies as well as fly fishing, and has acquired considerable knowledge in both in the past five years.
He and his wife have been coming to the Wellston area for the past 30 years, but moved up here permanently in 2005. As part of their family, they have two chocolate labs, Kahlua and Mocha.
Nick was born and raised in Northern Michigan and started steelhead fishing when he was 13 years old. He enjoys fishing on small rivers and experimenting with new fly fishing techniques. He has a broad knowledge of steelhead and trout species. He specializes in nymph fishing using a variety of his own tied flies. He has grown a passion for teaching others and his greatest enjoyment is seeing the look on his client’s faces when they catch their first or fiftieth fish.
He also upland hunts with his German Short Hair dog, Sage. He has 25 years of experience in hunting the northern woodlands. He enjoys watching his dog working and seeing the birds flush out in the spectacular fall colors.
He is accomplished in creating and building his own cedar strip drift boats, which he uses on his guide trips.
Mark is an absolute pleasure to spend a day on the river with. He's knowledgeable, hardworking, and just fun to be around. He has fly fished all over Michigan, parts of the American West on numerous occasions, and truly enjoys fishing in the Florida Keys and Caribbean. Mark has a profound passion for the outdoors and continues to protect natural resources as well as promote conservation ethics for the benefit of current and future generations. He is a professional in all aspects, has a strong work ethic, and is fond of good company and bringing smiles to people's faces. He strives to provide a unique fishing experience and to provide his clients with opportunity to enjoy the grandeur of western Michigan rivers.
Mark has spent his last 10 years working as a wildlife biologist, conducting research on various wildlife species such as black bear, white-tailed deer, bobcats, river otters, and trumpeter swans to name a few. While he enjoyed his time conducting wildlife research, he decided a change was in order and chose to pursue professional fishing as a career. Mark also manages his own mapping business, TrophyMaps.net and provides high quality, detailed bathymetric maps of the Great Lakes.
Fishing all over North America, guide Brent Borcherdt has come to the same conclusion that the rest of our staff has: Northern Michigan's beautiful scenery and changing seasons combined with the excellent fishery is tough to beat. Brent has guided professionally in Michigan since 2004, and has also guided a season in the Bristol Bay region in Alaska. He's passionate about fishing Michigan's trout and steelhead and loves to take advantage of any opportunity to fish dries, especially in early summer.
Brent lives in Traverse City with his family--wife Rachael, daughter Brooke, and black labs River and Scout.