Montana Fly Fishing Guides


Montana Fly Fishing Guides

Caring, patient, fun guides dedicated to making your river experience the best

Dan Grabowski

Dan (on the left) comes to us via the great state of wandering fishers - Minnesota.

Growing up outside the Twin Cities, Dan figured out his true calling early on and leapt at the opportunity to head to Alaska and guide anglers for salmon and leopard rainbows of awesome proportions through the fabled Tikchik Narrows Lodge.

Dan guided in AK for 5 seasons before pointing things south a bit and coming to Montana in 2004. Dan is an exceptionally hard working guide who will go to great lengths to ensure his anglers a great trip (witness the picture!) on all our area rivers, spring creeks, and lakes. Easy going, patient, and articulate, you will find fishing with Dan a pleasure.

When not on the water chasing trout, you’ll likely find Dan chasing upland birds all fall with his English Cocker, Locky, who is as relentless about birds as his owner is about trout.  Dan also enjoys spending weekends with his wife, Christy, and their two children Betsy and Louis skiing around all the fun family run Montana ski hills throughout the winter months.

Jeremy Brown

Jeremy started fly-fishing as a youngster on the tributaries of the Finger Lakes in Western New York

After graduating from the University of Montana with a BS in Wildlife Biology, he has been working and fishing in far off places. He has wet a line from Alaska to New Zealand. Since landing in Livingston, Jeremy has grown close to the many different trout streams in the area.

From the dry fly flats on the Missouri River to the big freestone runs on the Yellowstone, Jeremy enjoys sharing his passion for fooling Big Sky trout with clients from all corners of the globe. He spends the fall months guiding archery and rifle hunters. In the winter you’ll find him keeping tabs on wintering elk, shed horn searching, and tying flies.

Nolan Majcher

Nolan Majcher lives to fish. His fly fishing career started on the difficult trout streams of central Pennsylvania

The wary trout of his old stomping grounds forced him to perfect his craft. To fund his fishing habits, Nolan worked for Orvis Pittsburgh as head casting and fly tying instructor. As an instructor he taught hundreds of anglers, both novice and veteran, proper techniques.

Equipped with the knowledge to be an excellent guide, Nolan migrated to the fishing paradise of the Yellowstone Valley. His passion for fishing is contagious when spending a day on the water together. Clients love Nolan’s laid back nature and no nonsense approach to getting fish in the net.

Dan Marchky

Fly fishing started at an early age for Dan.

It went from working on timing the cast in the backyard, to traveling all over the US as well as other seemingly exotic places beyond. Spending some years of his life in Pennsylvania then ending up in Montana, he has fished for many a trout in-between.

From spooky Cutties in tiny spring creeks to Golden Mahseer in the Himalayan headwaters, he has enjoyed fishing for all species that might rise to a fly.

Dan has a passion for river conservation and native fish, sincerely enjoys teaching people about the Greater Yellowstone region, and how to flyfish for our abundant trout. A day spent with Dan on the water is a day of education and enjoyment.

Ty Green

Tyler doesn't know a life without fly fishing

Tyler’s fly fishing career started in diapers at his grandfather’s fly tying vise, learning the classics. From Bob Clouser’s streamer techniques to Joe Humphreys trout tactics, Tyler doesn’t know a life without fly fishing. Central Pennsylvania’s experienced and patient oldtimers, mixed with Appalachia’s endless Blue Ribbon trout streams were perfect conditions for Tyler to develop his craft. Finding trout in backcountry places soon brought Tyler to the Rocky Mountain West, where the abundance of adventure and rising trout is enough to captivate anyone. Settling in Paradise Valley, Tyler developed a passion for the greater Yellowstone region that extends far beyond the reaches of the valley.

Whether it be wading the spring creeks, floating the rivers or hiking the lakes, Tyler puts in the work to find the fish. In the off season, you’ll find him guiding Elk and mule deer hunters in the fall, chasing ducks and grouse with his labs in the winter, and backpacking Montana’s backcountry every chance in between. Tyler’s outgoing personality, patience and dedication to putting his clients on fish, ensures you leave a better angler than you came.

Lance Gray

A real dry fly nut Lance was raised in the Paradise Valley just south of Livingston.And having grown up in an outdoor family Lance cut his teeth on the Yellowstone River.

While in high school and through college Lance guided whitewater rafting trips on the Yellowstone, Gallatin, and Madison rivers, always finding time to fish at days end. Holding a degree in Communications, Lance concentrates his focus on casting technique, fishing skills, and local area history.

Lance possesses a tremendous amount of knowledge and patience so whether you’re a beginner or seasoned expert, you can rest assured after a day with Lance you will walk away a better angler. When not on the water Lance enjoys teaching his 2 kids to fish as well as getting out himself to hunt elk or pursue game birds in the Montana uplands with his setter, Jet.

Kevin Edwards

Kevin thoroughly enjoys teaching people and does so with enthusiasm and skills

Kevin grew up with a father whose passion for fishing was contagious. As a young child of 7 with a Fenwick 5 weight glass rod Kevin’s fishing career began chasing fish with a fly. Kevin started out on the famed banks of the Owens River on the Arcularius Ranch, East Walker River, Hat Creek and Hot Creek in California. Along those waterways he sharpened his skills.

Fly fishing has taken Kevin places that he never would have thought he would have gone otherwise. After a few trips to Montana, Kevin knew this was the place for him. He made the jump in 1990 and never looked back. Pursuing trout in Montana really has no boundaries if you have the time and Kevin had plenty of that. Kevin thoroughly enjoys teaching people and does so with enthusiasm and skills whether guests are beginners or seasoned anglers. Kevin has a degree in the Culinary Arts and has been the Executive Chef for a private guest ranch in the Crazy Mountains for many years before adding professional guide to his accomplishments. Kevin also other guides upland bird hunting adventures with his crew of 6 English Pointers: Jack, Ed, Soose, Evie, Pippin and Pie. In the off season, Kevin trains bird dogs and enjoys traveling.

Ryan Sones

Ryan is blessed with a beautiful family who call Montana home.

Ryan started fly fishing at 8 years old during a father-son trip to the Yellowstone and Madison rivers. This was the beginning of the end. During that trip the mountains and her rivers had done their damage. They both had left their marks. The scars ran so deep, Ryan even manipulated his college thesis around fly fishing. He realized by doing so he could take a week-long fishing trip— during actual school time— all while gaining school credit. After college he could not move to Montana fast enough. Never looking back, 22 years and 15 ski passes later, he still heeds the call. Ryan is blessed with a beautiful family who call Montana home. However, after all his time in God’s country, he’s still befuddled. You see Ryan is regularly tormented by daydreams of running through the woods, bow in hand, chasing bugling elk. Or even worse… casting to tarpon sliding through the Florida Gulf flats praying for just one more perfect cast. Ryan loves sharing his knowledge and love for fly fishing with anyone and everyone. When he’s not on the river or playing Mr. Mom, he keeps busy with a photography business.

Zach Petrich

Born and Raised in one of the most beautiful places on earth- Paradise Valley

Zach is a 6th generation Paradise Valley boy. Growing up and continuing to live on the family ranch, his interests include fly fishing, hunting and ranch roping.  Zach has been fishing the Yellowstone River and its many small tributaries since he could walk.

Aside from his passion for wild streams and rivers, Zach also enjoys technical, hatch based stillwater and spring creek fishing that entails precise casts and drag free drifts to wary trout. While Zach finds other areas in the world thrilling to fish, his passion remains on his home waters where trout cannot resist the temptation of devouring large foamy dry flies.

In the off season, Zach will likely be found working on his family ranch, tying flies or reading a Louis L’amour book by the wood stove. Zach strives to teach his knowledge of fly fishing while continuing to learn more about the sport himself. A day on the water with Zach will give the angler a relaxing chance to enjoy their passion for trout fishing while practicing new techniques at any skill level. Along with the opportunity to hear about local history and events, Zach also enjoys sharing stories about his experience at home on the ranch.

Jeff Welke

Originally from northern Michigan, Jeff Welke started fly-fishing at ten, tying flies at twelve and then worked at The Fly Factory all through high school.

Jeff started teaching fly-casting instruction at 17 through the FFF, managed the fly shop and guided in the summers while pursuing his BA in Business Administration at Michigan State University. After discovering the local area during a trip to Yellowstone, he made the move out west right out of college to begin his career and also pursue the sporting life he dreamed of since a boy. After moving to Livingston, Welke spent several years as the former general manager of Dan Bailey’s Fly Shop.

He currently is a local real estate agent and spends the summer months also guiding fishermen on his favorite streams while sharing his passion for angling and instruction. Jeff resides on a ranch south of Livingston with his three bird dogs and enjoys spending the off season gardening, foraging for wild mushrooms, wandering around in the mountains or hunting for big game animals and birds all across the region.

Sean Blaine

Born and raised on a lake in Northern Idaho, Sean grew up on the water.

After graduating college and serving in the military, he moved to Bozeman in the spring of 2000 and started his professional fly-fishing career. Since then he has continued to hone his fly fishing skills both on the water as a guide, and assisting fellow anglers choose the appropriate tackle while in a couple fly shops.

Sean takes advantage of all the great fishing in the area by spending as much personal time on the water as is possible. He can assist you in putting together the right rod and reel combo, choose the perfect fly for your day on the water or guide you on any of the areas many rivers, streams and lakes.

Sharing a lifetime’s worth of accumulated knowledge, experience and enthusiasm for enjoying your day on the water. Sean just recently returned from a winter in Tierra del Fuego where he was the head guide and manager at one of the world’s best Sea-run Brown Trout fisheries.

Ask him what it’s like to catch a 20+ pound brownie!

Buddy Holcombe

Growing up in all corners of the U.S., Buddy found his home in Montana in 2005

In the summers, Buddy bases himself on the border of Yellowstone National Park, in Gardiner, MT, where he spends his evenings hiking to new places for unfound fish. Buddy studied Environmental Science and Psychology in Missoula, at the University of Montana.

His family is in Great Falls, just a few hours north, where he frequently visits, at least in part, because of its proximity to Montana’s greatest wilderness area, The Bob Marshall. Buddy spends the off season working overseas in different capacities – from supporting science to medical and humanitarian efforts, Buddy is always interested in the next experience.

But at the end of every winter, Buddy is always back in Montana, gearing up to provide his guests the same experience he looks for on his own

Matt Nispel

Despite being born in Wisconsin, fishing didn’t really find its way into his life until “Matty” got introduced to fly fishing in the mountains west of Colorado Springs as a young adult.

After a failed first outing with a friend left him curious, he started putting every free hour into teaching himself and honing his skills on rivers such as the South Platte, Arkansas, Taylor, Blue, Frying Pan and New Mexico’s San Juan.

With each passing year it became clear to Matt he belonged working outside not inside. Ditching life in a cubical at work in the insurance industry, he packed up and made the move to Livingston where he worked as general manager and guide at Dan Bailey’s Fly Shop for five years before leaving to guide full time.

Having fished and guided all over Montana, Matty is equally at home on all our rivers big and small, spring creeks or lakes. Known for his constant smile, enthusiastic approach and abundant patience Matt’s ability to balance focused fishing with big laughs and smelling the roses along the way is enjoyed by beginners and seasoned anglers alike. In the off-season cross-country skiing and reading fill the gaps between time at the tying vise and personal fishing days.

Matson Rogers

Angler's West Owner & Outfitter

This season marks Matson’s 31st year guiding. Growing up in a family immersed in the sport of fly fishing and living next to fabled trout streams like the Roaring Fork in Colorado and the Brule in northern Wisconsin, he has been fly fishing since the age of 4.

Matson holds a degree in Environmental Economics from St. Lawrence University in Canton, NY, and is a former instructor at the Western Rivers Guide School located in Jackson Hole, WY.

Along with his home waters in Montana, Matson has fished throughout the Rockies,  New England, the Upper Midwest, Alaska, New Zealand, Belize, Bahamas, Mexico, British Columbia, and Labrador. Along with being a Sage Ambassador, Matson is also fortunate to be a Clackacraft Drift Boats prostaff member. Recently Matson has been featured in Simms Fishing Products Fall and Winter ad programs in print as well as online.

Matson runs Angler’s West with the invaluable help of his wife and life partner, Katherine. Together they are the parents of 3 wonderful children: Sam (22) Sydney (19) and Sawyer (16).

Nick Solley

Nick is one of our in-store guide trip booking managers, casting instructors, and guides. Nick was born and raised in Washington, Connecticut, and grew up fly fishing the many iconic trout streams that span across New England. Nick graduated with a BS in Geology from St. Lawrence University in Canton, NY, and was a dedicated member of the Outing Club and Hunting and Fishing Club. During his time at SLU, his love for the outdoors became the primary passion of his life.

Immediately after college, Nick lived on Cape Cod, Massachusetts teaching surfing at Sacred Surf as well as working at Catham Shellfish Company while using any spare time to religiously fly fish for striped bass during the summer migration. In the fall of 2018, Nick packed his bags and headed West. After working the winter in Big Sky, Nick started the 2019 summer season with Angler’s West. Since then, Nick has become one of our stalwart shop employees and guides.

During the season you will find Nick at the fly shop helping guests with the ins and out of fly fishing the Yellowstone or on the water teaching them firsthand. On his days off, Nick enjoys discovering new rivers and streams in the Greater Yellowstone region.  Wintertime finds Nick snowboarding Montana’s abundant powder stashes that become the next summer’s trout water.

Sam Rogers

Born and raised in Montana, his family owns Angler's West so it was only natural that Sam became immersed in everything fly fishing.  

With someone like Sam, “young” doesn’t mean “inexperienced.” Sam’s addiction to fly fishing led him to work at his father’s fly shop when he was 6 or 7 years old. He would tie all kinds of wonderful creations and put them in open bins throughout the store’s fly selection and add a homemade label with hopes of selling his wares. It worked pretty well and you could say Sam was hooked on the fly shop. He’s worked in the store during summertime in many capacities all through high school and now through college as well.  Sam splits time between his shop duties as well as guiding.

When not in the store or guiding guests on the home waters of the Yellowstone River, you can pretty well guess that Sam is out exploring new waters to fish or developing new fly patterns for his next outing. He has fished extensively in the Rocky Mountain West, the Mid-West, New England, as well as in exotic locales like Labrador, Belize, Mexico, and the Bahamas.

Sam will be starting his senior year at Montana State next fall. He is working toward a BS degree in Environmental Science and Ecology.

Kenny Wilson

Kenny grew up in Northern California, working at his family’s fishing resort and fly fishing Lake Almanor and surrounding rivers and lakes throughout Plumas, Lassen, and Sierra counties. Kenny earned a degree in Environmental Studies while alpine ski racing at NCAA Division I Colby-Sawyer College in New London, NH. Upon graduation, he moved to Montana where he conducted alpine ecosystem research for Montana State University and the USGS throughout Montana, Idaho, Nevada, and New Mexico.

It didn’t take long before Kenny knew that Montana was his new home. Currently based in Bozeman, MT, Kenny is centrally located to much of Southwest Montana’s rivers and lakes allowing him to spend a lot of time on a variety of water during the summer season. Splitting his time between working in the fly shop as well as guiding, Kenny enjoys teaching clients of all skill levels, including seasoned veterans, beginners, and children alike. His patience, enthusiasm, and passion are unmatched. Fishing with Kenny, there is no doubt that every angler will walk away with more than they began the day with – enjoyment for the sport, respect for the waters, and an awe of the landscape.

During the winter months, Kenny is the Alpine Competition Director/Head Coach at Bridger Ski Foundation, where he works with junior ski racers.

Marya Spoja

Native Montanan, Badass fly fisherwoman

Marya grew up trying to catch minnows with her hands and in general running around causing trouble on her family’s ranch over in Lewistown, MT a short two-hour drive from Livingston.  It wasn’t until graduating from college and moving to Livingston that she discovered the joys and frustrations of fly-fishing, which has now fully taken over her life for many years now. For the last 8 years she has been helping fly fishermen explore the region we call home.

We’re fortunate to have her as part of the Angler’s West team on the water. In the summer, when not guiding, you’ll find Marya somewhere outdoors- either finding new places to fish or returning to some of her favorite fishing spots. If it’s the winter, good luck trying to find her-she’s dogsledding or backcountry skiing somewhere most days of the week.

Zach Pleshar

Whether working and teaching novice anglers or sharing his knowledge with experienced anglers, everyone will enjoy a day on the water with Zach

A day on the water with this accomplished guide will emphasize the total experience of fly fishing in Montana, creating an environment with the right balance of fun and serious fishing.

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