Wednesday, December 11, 2013


It was the coldest it's been in decades up here in Wolf Creek and Craig from what some of the old timers have been saying. (Negative 30ish the other morning.) So what I've been doing is some prep work for launching my website for when I become an outfitter. Yep, that's right; I'm stepping up my game a bit and putting my name in the hat. I've payed my $1800 for the application, operations plan and exam and have been approved. All I need to do is pass the test, pass the boat/truck inspection and I'm golden.

What does this mean? It means as soon as it all becomes official, I can start booking my own trips and booking other guides for multi-boat trips. It's a lot like construction in that I'll move from being a sub to being the general and instead of going through someone to hire me, clients will be able to contact me directly. However, I would strongly encourage anyone who has booked a trip with me through another outfitter or shop to continue their loyalty and go through the originating booking agent. Relationships are built on trust and integrity and so are strong businesses. I really want to build my business the right way.

For some, it also means reciprocity. The guide culture up here on the Mo has been defined, in large part, by the fact that there are more outfitters than guides. For some outfitters you become their competition when you take the leap and they won't hire you. For others it means one more relationship they might benefit from. For those outfitters that are a little paranoid and want to protect "their" clients, they miss opportunities for potential days on the water and even lodging. The one thing there isn't enough of on the Missouri is lodging.

Last year I worked for nearly 20 different outfitters/booking agents consisting of seven different shops, four lodges, and a number of independent outfitters who are already doing what I will be doing. There is risk in making the move because I know some of those outfitters will no longer higher me. What I'm banking on is the added revenue from booking my own trips along with getting more business from the shops who don't have a resident outfitter making up for the loss. We shall see but regardless, it was time to make the move and I will continue to support and promote those who support me.

One last thing; I have been doing a lot of work on building a website as well as putting together some marketing materials. However, I can't make any of it public until I actually get my license so if you're looking for my website or want to book a trip with me, you'll have to wait for about a month or so. I'll keep you posted.

Keep 'em where they live...

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