Why Choose Us? There are other shops and guides...here is where we excel!
- Our Guides are fully licenced from the Province of British Columbia and we are fully insured - if you don't choose us...make sure the guide you do pick has a licence and insurance.
- We fish because we love to! We're passionate about what we do and fishing isn't just a job for us it's a way of life!
- We Live in Fernie, and run a great fly shop year round, so we are not seasonal working from our cell phones.
- We don't pay for extravagant endorsements, nor do we feel we need to. Fish with us and you will see why.
- The shop has been here for over 10 years and the total years of our guides local experience is over 180 years!!!!
- Best Guides in the Valley! Need I say More???? Our guides stay with us because we are the best and there is no need to shop hop! In fact, we are the only shop that has guides that were actually born in Fernie!
- Our In house Staff - Friendly, knowledgeable and passionate about fly fishing. The shop GIRLS are cute too!!!!
- The Elk Valley is our home waters and all of the staff and guides spend all year finding new fishing spots just for you! Preferred and Private River Access...... especially on the upper Elk!
- The Shop has all you need including the Best Fly Selection in the Elk Valley
- The Extra Mile - We'll get it done for you! Don't see it, need help with it? Just ask and we will do our best to accommodate your requests!
We could go on about how great we are, but we don't brag......just stop by and see for yourself!
With all our trips, float or walk n' wade, we offer the most professional guided fly fishing experience in the Elk Valley - our service and reputation are second to none. All of our guides have worked and lived in the valley for many years and know the in's and outs of the waters in their own backyard like no one else. We have 7 different floats on the Elk River alone, and 100's of miles of walk and wade fishing. Let us put together a fishing adventure of a life time!
Float Trips - Full Day up to 2 Anglers (Quoted in Canadian Funds)
Elk River - $650 St. Mary River - $650 Oldman River - $650 Kootenay River Bull Trout Safari - $795
Bull River - $650 Waterton River - $650
Walk N' Wade Trips - Full Day up to 2 Anglers (Quoted in Canadian Funds)
Elk River & Tributaries - $650 Michel Creek - $650 Wigwam River & Tributaries - $850 Bull River & Tributaries - $650 Crowsnest River - $650
Oldman River - $650 Flathead River - $650 3rd Angler - Walk N' Wade only - $185 (not available on Wigwam, Flathead or Bull)
Stillwater (Lake) Trips - Full Day up to 2 Anglers (Quoted in Canadian Funds)
Local Lakes - $450 Distant Lakes - $495
Guided Trips do not include BC or Alberta angling licences or guide gratuity - Tips should go directly to the guide at the end of the trip and should not involve the shop. A fair gratuity for a guided day is 50$ per angler or $100 for two anglers (plus or minus based on the guides efforts that day).
All trips are based on up to two anglers for the quoted price and are subject to 5% GST
All Trips include:
- Access & use of our extensive fly selection specifically selected for the waters we fish.
- Plenty of beverages during the trip
- Tasty lunch
- Our expertise and experience in fly fishing the rivers, tributaries, and other local waters
- Transportation to and from our fly shop
- Full Day Float Trips on Mackenzie Style Drift Boats or drift rafts, or full-day Walk N' Wade trips
We offer a Full-Service Fly Shop and fly fishing equipment can be purchased upon your arrival, and can also be pre-ordered to ensure availability when you arrive. Call us for more details.
What to Bring & Fishing Equipment Required
- Hip Waders, preferably lightweight and breathable as it does get warm.
- Felt soled wading boots, the river rocks are very slippery.
- Sweatshirt / Fleece
- Rain Coat
- Hat and Sunglasses (polarized if possible so you can see deeper into the water)
- Fly rod and reel (4, 5, or 6 weight)
- Dry fly line and some 5X leaders.
- Sunscreen & Hat
Gear Rental is Available (subject to availability & advanced notice required)
- Wading Boots
- Fly Rod & Reel
**Booking Policy**- We require a 50% deposit at time of booking to hold the trip dates. Balance is due 30 days prior to arrival. Refunds on fishing only are full amount less $100 (+5% GST) processing fee up to 30 days prior. Refunds on packages are full amount less $150 (+5% GST) processing fee up to 30 days prior. Cancellation less than 30 days = no refunds. We suggest purchasing 3rd party travel insurance. Packages with third party accommodations are subject to the accommodators policy. Poor weather and or less than desirable water conditions are not accepted reasons for cancellations. Elk River Guiding Company reserves the right to cancel trips due to unsafe conditions at which time a full refund or transfer of date will be made.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Q: When is the best dry fly fishing in Fernie? We usually recommend the last three weeks in July, throughout August, and the first two weeks in September. This of course is based on the weather, which as you know is hard to predict! The river’s open up officially to fishing as of June 15th every season. Depending on when the spring runoff is, we can have phenomenal dry fly fishing as of June 15th straight through into October.
Q: What is recommended for tipping? This is at the client’s discretion, but we generally recommend a good starting point for Guides is $100.00 per day per boat (ex: 2 Anglers = $50 each). It is best to tip your guide directly, rather than paying with a credit card through the Fly Shop.
Q: What airport should I fly into? There are 3 options. We usually suggest flying into Kalispell, MT or Calgary, AB as flights tend to be more cost effective. Most clients will then rent a car from the airport and drive to Fernie. If driving from Kalispell, MT please factor into your travel time the potential wait at the USA/Canada border.
Cranbrook, BC / Canadian Rockies International Airport / 1 hour drive to Fernie, BC
Kalispell, MT / Glacier Park International Airport / 2 hour drive to Fernie, BC
Calgary, AB / Calgary International Airport / 3.5 hour drive to Fernie, BC
Q: Do I need a valid passport when traveling to Fernie, BC? Yes, a valid passport is needed when traveling from out of country.
Q: Can a purchase a BC fishing license at Elk River Guiding Company? Yes, you can. We usually recommend when going on a guided trip to purchase your BC fishing license upon arrival at the Fly Shop. This way we can make sure that the appropriate rivers as well as the outfitter are selected.
Q: Should I be concerned about bears? We recommend being “Bear Aware” when out fishing. We suggest making noise as well as carrying bear spray, and or bear bangers. Both bear spray and bear bangers are sold at Elk River Guiding Company. The Elk Valley is home to black bears as well as grizzly bears.
Q: What flies should I tie prior to arrival? This depends on the time of year you are visiting, please feel free to review the hatch chart https://www.elkriver.ca/fly-fishing, but here are a few examples:
Dries: Golden Stoneflies / Fat Alberts / PMX / Caddis / BWO / Adams / Western Green Drakes / Ants / Beetles / Hoppers
Nymphs: Golden Stoneflies / Prince Nymphs / Cooper Johns / Leech Patterns
Streamers: Black, White, Natural, and bright colors in Double Bunnies, as well as Woolly Buggers