About two weeks ago I had to book a last-minute trip with my son because my trip on the ocean was canceled due to weather but fishing in the Portland area was available. I looked up guides and I tried to book with Buddy due to his ratings, but he was booked solid and suggested his son Travis.
I was very hesitant because Travis was so young, but Buddy assured me that he had years of experience from years of working with him, and as a bonus, his boat only holds four people. I took the risk and booked the trip for me and my son, and honestly, I’ve never seen anyone’s work so hard in my life as Travis to try to get us a salmon.
First Trip: We were scheduled for a full day on the Columbia River, and no boats were catching fish, But Travis did everything he could, even staying hours longer than most of the other boats till at least one person on our board catch a salmon. If it was even possible to catch additional fish, I felt like we would’ve done it.
I actually felt comfortable to book with Travis again a week later, and he even called me the night before just to encourage me that based on that day he felt like I was going to catch a fish. Travers actually likes to leave earlier than the other guides to try to get the first bite, which gave us a better chance than most, but what really amazed me was how hard he worked once again (I think his youth was a major positive in this) and every bite we got, he got very excited for us.
Once again no boats were catching fish, But Travis never gave up and stayed positive and even thought outside the box on different trolling patterns than the other boats. Even after most of the boats left, Travis never felt discouraged and keep working hard, and long story short, although one or two stray boats caught salmon during the day, we actually caught three salmon between the three of us paying customers(one each) And even the other boats were all now imitating us how we were fishing no one else were catching fish.
I know for all my future fishing trips in Portland or the state of Oregon, I will only be booking with Travis (Or Buddy, if Travis is not available) The advantage with Travis is he will work harder than any other guides I saw, His boat leaves earlier than most and stays later than most. if there’s fish to be caught he will find them, he’s optimistic and keeps the energy going the whole trip and Time will pass very quickly and the trip will never be boring. At the end of the trip, the three of us had our salmon fillet and packed up by Travis.
If I caught any fish or not, this trip would’ve been worth every penny. A lot of the more experienced guide I’ve observed seemed tired and just going to the motions. I brought my young son on the first trip, he couldn’t make it on the second trip, but I’m sure if he had made it, fishing with Travis would have been his best shot at his first salmon. I would recommend Travis for families, or Serious sportsman, or first-timers, He might be young but he’s a superstar and I know down the road it will be hard to book with him because he’ll be one of the most popular guides in Oregon, So build those fishing memories while you can with him. By the way, I saw Buddy working as hard as Travis on his boat, so you can’t go wrong with booking either one of them.