Meet the New Guide at WTO

Water Time Outfitters is growing and we are constantly striving to surpass our customers expectations with expert, fun-loving guides and exceptional hospitality, so our guests can focus on their love of fishing, maximize their success and take home memories that last a lifetime. Our new guide Zach Epstein helps us meet that commitment now more than ever…Meet Zach.

I started my career living in a tent on the banks of the Kanektok River in Alaska hunting for King Salmon, keeping my spey rods strung for ever-eager clients. I returned home to work for Jack Hagan of NW Flyfishing Outfitters in Portland, OR. Under his wing, I fine-tuned my coaching and customer service skills while teaching Intro to Fly Fishing courses and guiding the Deschutes, Sandy, Clackamas, and McKenzie rivers and the surrounding still waters of my hometown. Concurrently, I was invited to guide on the Warm Springs Reservation. That was no easy invitation, and it’s an experience I am very grateful for. My days are filled out of doors providing a service I believe the modern person needs a great deal more of: learning, bonding, and sharing a deep passion and love for wild places. When I’m not guiding, you can find me swinging my shotgun, honing my archery, calling in elk, and of course fly fishing in my backyard, and it’s always done with my best friend and dog, Gus!

In the summer of ’17, I decided I could catch an Oregon Rainbow Trout on a mouse. I had boxes of patterns left over from Alaska and a private lake all to myself. Sure enough, as the shade crept over the east bank I found a player. He jettisoned out of the water like a great white shark, spitting the mouse only to come down upon it pummeling it with his shoulders. I knew this game. Much like his cousin the Leopard Trout in Alaska, he would eat his prey in its stunned state. All I’d have to do is NOTHING. Just be patient, still; show one ounce of discipline. My heart was beating in my throat, each contraction encompassing a full swing around the sun. His nose surfaced and his tail swirled. Down went the mouse and my line went tight! It was a firm set, and we were dancing. I was all alone on a lake in the middle of nowhere, and all I could think was what a joy this moment was going to be share with others.

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