Matt Chatani - Guide

How long have you been fishing?
since I was 3

How long have you been fly fishing?
since I was 10

How long have you been guiding? Since 2018 

Why and how did you get started in guiding? 

I was lucky enough to grow up around the guide scene. My Dad is an outfitter/guide on the Bow. That helped me get my start in the industry. I have always enjoyed fly fishing and being outside. I get so much satisfaction when I can help people catch fish. 

Are you a fly tyer?
Yes

Favorite pattern(s)?
The Bow River Bugger is my go-to guide streamer, it’s so versatile. I’ll fish any dry fly that I can see. I don’t really think the fly matters much, I enjoy trying anything creative and different. 

What do you row? Why?
I row a 16’ Clackacraft LP and have a 16’ custom Jet sled. The LP is easy to stall in place and feels very maneuverable. It slides over gravel easily to get into the skinny water where other boats stick and struggle. Both my boats have lots of dry storage. My jet was completely custom built for fishing the Bow, it’s a fraction of the weight of other sleds on the market, I love the elevated casting decks, it rows great and runs great.

Favorite fishing technique?
Personally I can sight fish all day. I love having clients who understand the complexities of sight fishing and enjoy the reward just as much as me. I also love the higher tempo and pure violence of streamer fishing. I think that making fish eat streamers when they’re not in a super chase-y mood is one of the hardest things to do as an angler and guide, and I really enjoy the challenge.  

Your strengths as a guide?

I take my job seriously and always work hard. I’m resourceful, I understand when to adapt and change the way I’m guiding to meet changing conditions. 

What do you do to add to the experience on a slow(er) day?
I usually try to establish a connection with my clients other than just fishing. I do my best to make sure they become better anglers regardless of the fishing, if the client has something to take away from the day, I think we all enjoy it a bit more. 

Favorite guide-related memory?
I have way too many good memories! I love my Job! 

Embarrassing anecdote (something that happened while guiding)?

I had a client rigged up with wire leader for a pike we had spotted. It got wrapped up in the net and the wire leader cut a little hole in the net bag. I guided the next week with that little hole and no problems. The following day my client mentioned the hole and joked about losing a fish through it. Of course, I tell him that won’t happen (I was wrong haha.) After bagging a few average fish, my client hooked a nice brown, which I scooped and all is well. As I began to pass the net off to my client for a photo, the fish swam up toward the hole and right through and then broke off. Luckily, the fish were happy that day, so we quickly forgot all about it. I changed my bag that night haha

This is seasonal work…. What do you do in the off-season?
I work in the shop

Given the opportunity who would you choose to fish with? Or someone who has inspired you as an angler/tyer/teacher/guide. 

I always love fishing with my dad. He’s been a massive inspiration to me and taught me pretty much everything I know. I also really look forward to my annual tarpon trip down south with my uncle. 

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