Kristin Lorenzo came to us seeking to be a better angler. The proof is in the picture. Reserve your spot in the Montana Fishing Guide School Today.
We first met Kristin when she joined us for our June 2017 guide school, and since then have seen her back in the Big Sky area eager to fish and ready to learn more. While she's currently pretty busy as a high school teacher, we won't be surprised to see her out on the water guiding soon. Kristin was nice enough to tell us about her guide school experience, and what she's up to now.
Why did you attend guide school or what did you hope guide school would help achieve?
The best way to improve is to go outside of one’s comfort zone. I attended guide school to learn from professionals with the hope of polishing my fishing skills, developing many new ones, and meeting people who share my passion for fishing. I'm a high school teacher, so I felt that my teaching skills would transfer easily to guiding. Lastly, I wanted to learn to row a drift boat and develop an eye for fishing from the boat. With time I intend to spend some of the summer months as a guide.
What was the best lesson learned from guide school? How do you use that lesson while out fishing?
“Believe it” is my motto that resulted from working with two particular guides during the school. The motto means I have to be confident in all aspects of fishing because I’ve done the work; therefore, I must trust my instincts and rely on past experiences to drive my current choices while on the river. For instance, I distinctly remember being on the Upper Madison, I chose the location and the flies, and I knew how I wanted to run the drift. A fish hit, but I didn’t set the hook because my faith in my ability stopped as soon as I cast. After I missed the fish a second time, one of the guides said, “You know what your issue is? You have to believe it. Believe that the fish is there.” Later practically the same advice came from a different guide when trying to navigate the rocks while rowing. I would assume the worst outcome instead of trusting my instincts and abilities. The motto also means I must be willing to take a few risks, which is something I wouldn’t have done prior to school. At the end of October, I drove to upstate New York to fish the Salmon River for Steelhead (I know, I know...Great Lake steelies are weak compared to the West coast! This is as good as it gets for Easterners.). I researched guides in the area, and I went. I had fun and learned a lot!
Most memorable moment from guide school?
My most memorable moment was on the upper Madison on the third day of rowing. It “all” clicked. I was no longer conscious of my every move with the oars: my thoughts and actions just synced. I remember being focused on reading the water, rowing, and talking about the placement of casts to the others in the boat. The next thing I know, the guest in the front of the boat hooked a fish where I had planned. Although a bit of luck is involved, I just remember thinking, "I can do this." That moment made up for all of the embarrassing incidents that occurred in the previous days!
Another memorable moment was on Willow Creek when Drew netted two brown trout as each had taken one of the nymphs on my double rig.
Are you currently guiding, and if not, where has fishing taken you since completing guide school?
I'm not currently guiding although I did finish the paperwork to have my license in Montana, which I just renewed. I've set several goals after attending guide school. I want to learn more about the hatches and water throughout an entire season in Montana. Last summer I fished the end of June like I've always done, and I made another trip back in August. I learned a lot because so many factors were different. Additionally, I bought a drift boat. I want to continue to develop my rowing and guiding skills and navigate new rivers. Currently, my boat is in Pennsylvania, and I'm going to spend the first part of this spring exploring local rivers. Drift boats in NW PA are a rarity, yet I feel opportunities exist.
I've “guided” a few friends and family members who have no experience fishing. It went well. I will continue to do that as it keeps my teaching skills in check, but it also allows me to share what I think is so valuable about the fly fishing. Guide school reminded me that not everyone approaches fly fishing like me; however, if I can provide a positive, fun day or afternoon then I've made a positive impact.
If someone were to ask you why they should sign up for guide school, what would you say?
If a person is considering guide school, I would encourage them to just do it. Whether the individual wants a career change, a challenge, or an intense week of fishing, I think it's really important to set some goals for the week, get plenty of rest, and be prepared to work! I had so much fun, but at the end of the day I was exhausted! I kept a daily journal while attending the school. It helped me keep track of the things I learned, document frustrations, and note bits of advice.
Any other thoughts, shoutouts?
Everyone at GRG has been so welcoming and helpful. Everyone has a sense of humor, which makes it a fun place to be. Keep up the good work!
For more information or to sign up or to sing up someone you think should take the Montana Fishing Guide School, contact us today or visit the the guide school website.