We had a great time hosting Judson Conway and his crew, Matt, Owen, Connor, and Sam, of Elk Creek Outfitters (www.ecoflyfishing.com) out of Boone, NC for two days of False Albacore fly fishing at Cape Lookout. These guys are all accomplished trout guides in the mountains who specialize in float and wade fishing for trout, smallmouth bass, and musky in the mountain rivers. I’ve personally experienced some fantastic trips over the past four years with Judson, seeing some of the prettiest water that western NC and northeast TN have to offer and catching some nice fish along the way.
I had to recruit the skills of my good friend Nathan Edwards, the “longeared mule”, to help put the rest of these guys on some fish. Nathan did an outstanding job. He outfished me, but they did more spin fishing, giving them a slight advantage. Guiding other fishing guides, especially seasoned guides, is a fun endeavor but also can be a lot of added pressure to perform at the most professional level. These guys are skilled enough with a fly rod to take advantage of just about any situation you put them in, but you always want to stay sharp under their more critical eye. Fly fishing for false albacore is on the opposite end of the fly fishing spectrum from trout fishing in the mountains, but these guys adjusted, and we had an absolutely awesome time, everyone catching their first (or first few) false albacore on fly.
We will be doing some more albie trips this fall before the season is over, so stay tuned to our reports and check out the pictures from our trip.