"I can't say enough about how fortunate I am as an outfitter to have the following individuals working with me. Each and every one is an excellent instructor, guide, and friend. When I have an opportunity to take a day afield for myself, it's generally with one of the following people. What we all share is a love and dedication to our sport and sharing that with you. I hope you have the opportunity to find out how valuable their skills can be!"
Steve Leibinger One warm summer evening on the banks of a small trout stream in Wyoming, Steve’s father patiently taught him the art of fly fishing. And that night at the ripe old age of 7, Steve caught his first trout on a dry fly. That was the turning point in his life; flyfishing had a hold on him and would ultimately become his profession. Born and raised in the West, Steve received his Bachelors of Science degree in Physical Geography at the University of Wyoming before heading to Aspen, Colorado for “one ski season” and his first guide trip on the waters of the Roaring Fork River in 1994. He became the head guide for Aspen Flyfishing before venturing back north to bigger waters, bigger trout and bigger skies in the wilds of Montana. Steve immediately fell in love with Montana’s fly fishing and began guiding for Angler’s West in 2000. Thankfully, Steve’s wife Annie and daughter Stephanie (7) have happily agreed to let him follow his fly fishing dreams and make their home in Bozeman in the foothills of the Bridger Mountains. Steve’s experience and passion for fly fishing are evident in his guide style. If you are just getting started in the sport or if you’ve fly fished the world, join Steve for a rewarding day on one of Montana’s wonderful rivers.
Craig Boyd Hailing from Calgary, Alberta, and growing up in a fanatic fly fishing family, Craig has taken every opportunity to hone his skills on many of the finest waters of the Pacific Northwest and Rocky Mountains. Craig attended college at the University of Wisconsin-Superior where he lead his hockey team to three NCAA Final Fours and studied Biology. When not chasing the puck on some frozen pond, Craig could be found pursuing his first love, plying the waters of the Great Lakes tributaries. This love soon lead Craig west to find his fishing Mecca in Bozeman. Fishing extensively across Montana from the Beaverhead to the Big Horn and all the waters in between, home water riffles always draw him back to the Madison and Yellowstone. Beyond perusing his local haunts for the wily trout, Craig can be found skiing Bridger Bowl or chasing live music across the country.
Bill Buchbauer Billy is without a doubt one of the nicest guys you are likely to meet. With a big "Aw Shucks" grin, Bill does a phenomenal job on the water. Whether you are a beginner looking to start a new avocation or already a seasonded hand with the long rod, Bill has the ability to share his knowledge, skills, and affinity for the river with you. You will be in great hands, and likely have a new friend for life. Bill seeks out the high country when fishing wraps up in the fall. A semi-pro Big Mountain skier, this past winter Bill spent the winter months looking for the perfect turns in the perfect powder fields guiding heli-skiing for SEBA in southeast Alaska. Next winters location? Undecided, but snowy....
Michael Leach As a ranger naturalist for the National Park Service in Yellowstone National Park for many years, Mike has shared his passion for the Greater Yellowstone Region with people from all over the world. Growing up in Northern Idaho, Mike honed his love for the art of fly-fishing on some of the lesser known Idaho rivers and streams. He has also spent countless hours working the waters of the spectacular Bitterroot Valley and the Greater Yellowstone region such as the Yellowstone, Madison, and many others. As an educator, Mike has a great deal of patience and enjoys working with guests of all levels and experience. If you are looking for a guide who has great love and respect for Montana and with deep roots in the region then Mike is your man!
Burke Holmes Hailing from St. Louis, Missouri, Burke began fly fishing when he was 10. It wasn’t too long before he was tying flies and fooling the local blue gill and bass. He got his first dose of western trout fishing when he was 13 and has done everything in his power to stay in Big Sky Country. Burke began working in our shop when he was fifteen and has been answering phones and stocking flies ever since. Burke just graduated from the University of Montana in Missoula with a degree in Aquatic Biology. Burke fulfills a dual role with us as he's guiding as well as teaching First Timer trips and working in the shop. A day on the water with Burke will be full of conversation, humor, youthful enthusiasm, and trout.
Jeff Pavlovich (that's him on the right) Jeff comes to us from the South side of Chicago where he cut his teeth fishing the Lake Michigan steelhead tribs. For several years Jeff spent his time bummin' between the pacific Northwest and his beloved Wisconsin Spring Creeks. After spending three years with the Orvis Company teaching fly fishing and running one of their retail stores he decided to head West -to where his heart was tugging and landed in Montana. When not guiding or working in the shop as co-manager, Jeff can be found fishing new spots around SW Montana or tying up new patterns. Jeff heads up our newest addition to guided trips -chasing big nocturnal brown trout with mouse patterns. You won't see that 20-inch plus brown eat your fly in the middle of the night, but you'll hear it and feel it. And with Jeff's expertise, you'll be hooked on night fishing!
Chuck Borg Chuck hails from Enumclaw, Washington and grew up fishing with spinners and bait, but for the last 15 years focused completely on fly fishing. He graduated from Lewis and Clark College in Portland, Oregon in 1999 and immediately moved to Montana. Chuck has fished many of the waters of the Great Northwest, Chile, and Argentina. He has been a guide in southwest Montana for the last 8 years and has been blessed to have what he calls a “dream job.” He has the patience to teach basics to a novice and the experience to help advanced anglers refine their skills, all while providing a very enthusiastic atmosphere on the river. When this hard-working guide is not on the river he can be found enjoying the outdoors with his wonderful wife and their dog (aka the fish alarm).
Peter HowellPeter (on the left) grew up in the Midwest and like many of our guides was driven to Montana for its great fishing and outdoor lifestyle. While attending the University of Montana Peter began guiding on the Yellowstone, Boulder, and a number of other rivers in the area during his free time. His enthusiasm for fishing has led him to a number of places such as Alaska, California, Florida Keys, and the Bahamas to search for new fishing opportunities. In the off season he can be found skiing and looking for that next travel destination, which usually involves fishing, backcountry horse packing, or both.