What people say about Swingwater Flyfishing

Tom is always striving for excellence and applies this mentality every day on the water with every guest. His knowledge of the rivers he guides is exceptional, and his spey instruction is some of the best out there.

What the pros are saying

“Tom Mahan stands out to me as one of the truly great guides that I have had the pleasure of working with.  There are certain guides that are just perfectly suited to be in their chosen profession – Tom is one of them. He exudes an overwhelming passion for his craft and can’t help but pass this enthusiasm on to every angler he spends time with.  I have been particularly impressed by his ability to quickly and efficiently get new anglers spey casting…and I don’t just mean “get it done” spey casting, but throwing darts! Tom is always striving for excellence and applies this mentality every day on the water with every guest. His knowledge of the rivers he guides is exceptional, and his spey instruction is some of the best out there.  Tom values the experiential aspect of the sport above all else, and finds plenty of fish along the way.”

Reid Curry
General Manager, Emerald Water Anglers

What clients are saying

  • I have gone on several trips with Tom and at the end of each day, I am always looking forward to the next. He is an excellent instructor and guide but most importantly he is very in tune with the river and the fish. Every time I have been on the water with Tom it has been a great experience. Can’t wait to throw some more flies!

    MikeWA
  • Rarely have I met anyone that rivals my passion and enthusiasm for time on the water until I met Tom. My first experience with him was a two day trip on the Cowlitz. My personal goals for that booking was not landing a steelhead, but rather a fundamental and highly scrutinized break down and understanding of my cast, which was limited to only one day trip with a spey rod prior. This was time and money well spent! Not only was Tom clearly well versed in all things spey, but more importantly he quickly assessed when to push the intensity of his instruction and when to tell me in his words, “take a seat”. I loved it! My expectations were surpassed, and by the second day we were discussing potential dates to swing the OP for three days in February 2017 and we did. That trip he continued his “dissection” of my cast, tweaked when necessary, and I left with a confidence and understanding I had not expected. Oh yeah, I forgot to mention Tom put me on fish both trips. On the Cowlitz I landed a juvenile steelhead, appropriate considering my skill level, and I missed my “unicorn” on the OP. Whether you are a beginner or advanced spey caster, do yourself the service of spending some time on the water with Tom. There is no downside!

    FloydAR
  • Swingin is a game of that consumes every fiber of your being and once it grabs it does NOT leave you.  When you step into a river to swing for steelhead or any salmonid for that matter, you want to do it with the utmost of your confidence and your ability.  The knowledge and skill offered from every aspect of spey=Tom Mahan.  Tom has an unmatched desire to share his expertise both on and off the water.  I’ve been fishing with Tom for several years now and came to the conclusion very early that Tom has poured his soul into all things spey.  From beginners all the way up the chain to advanced tactics, you will leave your trip a better speyman/speywoman after spending it with the GURU of steel.  The best part of fishing with Tom aside from his mountain of spey knowledge is that as good an angler as he is, he’s an even better person who accommodates any and all.   Don’t pass up an opportunity to learn from a true and foremost professional in the game.

    JeffMT
  • I want to thank you for the great fly fishing experience. With your guidance, we had Epic fishing for the four days that we fished with you. Your patience in teaching us new techniques for successful Big Rainbow Trout fishing were invaluable. My fishing buddy and I look forward to many more days having you as our guide, either in Alaska or in northern California.

    JamesAZ

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