The Best Jobs In The Fly Fishing Industry (And How To Get One)

Meetings, phone calls, long commutes, coworkers, did I say meetings? Everyone has to work; some just have it figured out more than others. The jobs below, while they may not be as glamorous as they appear on the outside, they’re still a whole lot better than being stuck in a cubicle all day long. Have you been dreaming of ditching the day job for working in the fly industry? Now’s your chance, find out how you can get the job of a lifetime, right now. Stay tuned for the, “A Day In The Life Of A…” series detailing each career path listed below, coming out every Friday on the Postfly blog. Fly Fishing Guide The dream job of maybe every fly angler at some point in their lives, being a guide isn’t all fishing. In fact, ask any guide around and they’ll tell you they rarely fish with a client, but instead fish through clients. Postfly Ambassador and fly fishing guide Tom Rice ( is based in Nova Scotia, Canada, putting his clients on brook trout on dry flies all season long. He said, “There’s no money in guiding unless you go up to Alaska, but seeing people catch fish is really great. It sounds corny, but you’re making dreams come true.”
Make The River Your Office A career as a fly fishing guide may be the most dreamed about position in the industry. Credit: Tom Rice
Get The Job: “Fish the water by yourself and learn it really well before you start bringing people out,” said Rice. After that, it’s all about creating a brand, building a client base and getting people on fish. “Also, you have to have a passion for it. Do it for you and you alone, no one else.” Check out the full look into A Day In The Life Of A Fly Fishing Guide with Rice and find out if you have what it takes, here. Full-Time Adventurer While most jobs in the fly fishing industry are day jobs spent at a desk staring at a computer screen, albeit with a few great perks, some anglers get to spend their days on the road, fishing as much as possible. The amazing thing is, every angler can be a full-time adventurer, at least for a little while, as long as they're willing to commit. Mark Vlaskamp ( got tired of scrolling through his Instagram feed and seeing people post epic photos every day as if they were living a much better life, when in reality it was content from the same trip getting posted over time. “I wanted to live the life that they were faking and live it every day,” said Vlaskamp.
How To Fish Full Time Road tripping fly angler Mark Vlaskamp spends nearly every day on the water. Credit: Mark Vlaskamp
Get The Job: “Honestly the biggest tip is getting out of debt and getting your responsibilities settled,” he said. “No one wants to hear that but that’s super important.” Once you do though, then the trip is that much more rewarding. Vlaskamp said, “Five days out of the week is spent on the water; I do a lot of fishing.” Check out the full look into A Day In The Life Of A Full-Time Adventurer with Vlaskamp and find out if you have what it takes, here. Fly Rod Designer The fly fishing industry would still be fishing with whippy sticks and branches if it wasn’t for the artists and craftsmen responsible for the advancements in fly rod design. They’re also the ones responsible for every single fish you catch and the way it feels in your hands. Talk about a rewarding career. Peter Knox, Sage’s new up and coming rod designer, gets so jacked up about the future of fly rod design that it consumes nearly his every thought. “This gets me mentally charged and ready to return to work and make something happen,” Knox says. “It’s not often that I show up at work not excited about what’s happening.”
Day In The Life Of A Fly Rod Designer Peter Knox spends most of his time thinking about the future of fly rod design. Credit: Sage
Get The Job: Before you start rolling blanks, Knox says, “Get good at casting and try to get an in-depth understanding of as many fisheries as you can.” That knowledge base will help you understand how to create the perfect fishing tool for any fishery, and to know what is practical. “We always have to look at the practical side of things and make sure new processes and components are actually possible.” Stay tuned for a full look into A Day In The Life Of A Fly Rod Designer with Knox and find out if you have what it takes here. Fly Fishing Artist Some anglers live and breathe fly fishing, but a very select few have so much passion that it bubbles over and comes out in a burst of creativity that can inspire the masses. A fly fishing artist has to create work that is not only beautiful but also fishy enough to adorn the fly boxes, truck windows, and boats of anglers across the country. Becoming a fly fishing artist is more about creating art all day, you have to be prepared to work–and work hard. “You don’t just get to draw or paint all day, unless you have the funds to hire a marketing and advertising team, accountant, web designer, etc.,” says artist Andrea Larko, ( “Be prepared to work 14-16 hour days to make your dreams a reality.”
Andrea Larko's Fly Fishing Art Andrea Larko's has made a name for herself throughout the fly fishing industry. Credit: Andrea Larko
Get The Job: If you have the passion and creativity to create fly fishing art then the next step is figuring out if you can market yourself as a brand and a business. “The majority of my everyday routine is doing everything else it takes to run a business and keep things in order,” said Larko. “ may cut into your fishing time a bit, but it’s so much fun.” Stay tuned for a full look into A Day In The Life Of A Fly Fishing Artist with Larko and find out if you have what it takes, here. Postfly Employee Fly fishing brands are the best companies to work for because not only are they're filled with insanely passionate people, they also allow you to think about fly fishing all day long, no matter what position you’re there to fill. Some companies are better to work for than others and though we may be biased, supplying the Postfly Tribe with flies every month has to be the best. Erin Foley used to be a Postfly Tribe Member herself, working a job that she didn’t like and thinking about fly fishing all day long. “Fly fishing, for me as it is for many, is a complete obsession,” said Foley. She saw Postfly was hiring and figured she'd just go for it, even giving up a promotion and a pay increase at her old job. “I can’t go 15 minutes without thinking about it. I figured if I was going to be thinking about it all day I might as well work for a fly fishing company.”
How To Be A Postfly Employee Erin Foley gave up a promotion at her old job to start working in the fly fishing industry. Credit: Ben Duchesney
Get The Job: While it may be hard finding a job in the industry, they’re out there and more available than you’d expect; you just have to try. “If you love fly fishing, don’t give up,” said Foley. “Just like fishing, landing your dream job will take time, patience, and dedication, but once you get it it’s worth the wade.” Stay tuned for a full look into A Day In The Life Of A Postfly Employee with Foley and find out if you have what it takes, here. Fly Tyer Some fly anglers enjoy conjuring up new patterns at the vise more than actually chasing after fish. For those with more dexterity than the average mortal, fly tying can be a rewarding career. Think you can be creative and efficient at the same time and crank out perfect patterns one after another all day long? Sam Looper, (Looper Flies) the Postfly Signature Tyer for the month of August started out by teaching himself to tie and has since perfected a few patterns of his own, now tying commercially full time alongside a full-time job as an engineer. His head for design allows him to create new patterns that are durable and effective, catching the attention of fly anglers and big fish.
Start Tying Flies Professionally Sam Looper is also the Postfly Signature Tyer for the month of August. Credit: Sam Looper
Get The Job: “Follow the rules, pay your taxes, set up your tax ID number, get a business license, do it legit–that’s important,” said Looper. “Also, learn to tie without putting down your scissors, because speed is the key; if you can’t do it efficiently and quickly don’t bother.” Stay tuned for a full look into A Day In The Life Of A Fly Tier with Looper and find out if you have what it takes, here. This is just the introduction to the series detailing the best careers in the fly fishing industry. While there are many more jobs that can help you escape the clutches of your cubicle, we’ll be detailing this collection of jobs on the Postfly Blog, starting with the full look into A Day In The Life Of A Fly Fishing Guide with Tom Rice. Find out if you have what it takes...
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