Forged Pro Staff
FORGED® couldn't be happier with its Pro Staff family, for they are the embodiment of why we do what we do. Our Pro Staff are Professionals in this Industry, and their stewardship of the environment and ability to make all clients feel like second-to-none do FORGED® proud. As well as Ambassadors to FORGED®, our Pro Staff also contribute to the brand with designs, improvements and fantastic photography of their unforgettable excursions. If you're looking for a Guided trip, you've come to the right place.
Bob Bautista was born and raised in Winnipeg Manitoba and learned how to become a expert angler for pike, walleye, perch, channel catfish and many other species found in the local rivers and lakes. A lot of his knowledge accumulated on the prairies was adapted to fish for trout and kokanee in the Okanagan. He loves to fly fish streams of any size and the many Stillwater around Kamloops and Kelowna, which is the area that he guides professionally. During the spring you can find him fishing chironomids and leeches under an indicator, throughout the many lakes in the region. As the weather warms up, he likes to toss dry flies for rainbow trout and cutthroat trout on southern Alberta waters. Fall draws him to the mighty Columbia river for large strong rainbow trout and walleye. Bob brings an incredible wealth of knowledge to Forged®, and has been instrumental in making our reels even better.
Mark Hillson learned to fish at an early age, from the Bow River, to
Ontario and all over Beautiful British Columbia, Mark has seen and
fished it all. With over twenty years fly-tying experience, he can
supply you with all of the essential flies you need to succeed, no
matter what fish you’re targeting. Mark is an essential and valued Pro
Staff member at FORGED®, and a certified River Guide that will make your
Vancouver Island fishing trip memorable. For information on Mark’s
guiding services or to book an ECO tour, visit www.cowichantroutfitter.com
For as long as he can remember, fishing
has always been Kurtis Billings' passion. His father taught him how to
fly fish at five years old on the Cowichan River, and soon after
Kurtis fell in love with Steelhead. If a type of fish resides around
Vancouver Island, Kurtis has targeted it. The Ocean is Kurtis’ second
home as he was brought up targeting salmon at a young age, and he now
uses that experience currently working his dream job doing summertime
charters for salmon and bottom fish off the West Coast of Vancouver
island. Kurtis has been an avid fisherman around Vancouver Island for 15
years and hopes to create smiles for his guests for many years to come.
FORGED® is honored to have him join the family, and thrilled to share in
his enthusiasm and professionalism. For information on Kurtis'
services, contact: River Quest Charters 5650 West Riverbottom Rd, Duncan, BC V9L 6H9 (250) 748-4776
Marley Bates started trout fishing at a young age, spending his
summers camping and traveling around the Pacific North West with his
father out of an old Volkswagen van. Since he bought his first fly rod
in his early teens, fly fishing and exploring the rivers and lakes of
the Cowichan Valley and surrounding areas has become an obsession. When
he's not on Vancouver Island targeting big trout in back country lakes
or salmon and steelhead in local rivers, he's traveling down south in
New Zealand visiting his kiwi side of the family and hooking in to large
brown and rainbow trout on the dry fly. Marley's passion for fishing
has turned into a way of life as he now has a career as a salt water
fishing guide, fishing for salmon and bottom fish in Nootka Sound,
Moutcha Bay Resort, Nootka Sound : firstname.lastname@example.org
You would think that with Brian Bergeson’s fly fishing accomplishments that he came from a long list of fly fishing lineage. With his experience and expertise you would think that he grew up in the Bridger or San Juan Mountain ranges. Not Brian, he calls Duluth, Minnesota home. As a Minnesota native he cut his teeth perfecting his art fishing for local Brook Trout, Walleye and Lake Superior Salmon and Steelhead. Joining the 1999 Youth Team USA Fly Fishing Team elevated his interest in fly fishing and furthered his skill set. Brian battled alcohol abuse in his 20’s and lost interest in fishing. Missing friendships and North Shore Steelhead Brian became sober a few years later. Around the same time he met a long lost friend in the middle of the Brule River wilderness who reignited his passion for fly fishing. It was at that point Bergeson decided to elevate his game. Since then he has been one of the fly fishing pioneers of Esox Fly Fishing in the Midwest, and continues to chase fish all over the country with a fly rod. Brian operates Rip Lips Custom Musky Flies and is a signature tier for Montana Fly Company. He is also a Field/Pro Staff member of TFO Fly Rods, Scientific Anglers and Fishbum Outfitters.
Cpt. Josh Laferty
Capt. Josh Laferty is co owner of Rock On Charters, based in the
heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Virginia "Team Rock On" offers
guided trips on the fly for New and James River musky, and Smith
Mountain Lake striped bass. Captain Josh is a Virginia native and has
spent the last 30 years afield in the Old Dominion, and every guided
trip with Rock On Charters reflects this life long passion. USCG
licensed and fully insured, "Team Rock On" is the regions premier guide
service for freshwater sportfish on the fly.
Captain Josh Laferty - 540-613-0850 www.rockoncharters.net
Dakota has been fly fishing since the age of 6, taught by his father on the banks of the Tetsa river deep in the Northern British Columbia mountain range. Dakota is currently endorsed through Simms Fishing Products, and Nautilus Fly Reels. An avid steelhead and trophy Bull trout fly angler, Dakota has an huge follower database through instagram which all are welcomed to follow (@tightlin3s). He's written articles for flyguys.net , Wilsons, and is currently writing something for flyfusion magazine on bull trout. Dakota will be moving to the coast next year, to become a full licensed guide for Steelhead and Salmon in the Kitimat-Stikine region of BC. This is just another step into his addiction of this madness which he loves more than anything in the world. Look out for his new youtube channel in the works!
Wesley started fly fishiing with his grandfather, teaching him to fly fish and tie around ten. He started
with trout in the kamloops and prince george areas, until high school when
he started spending summers at his grandmothers in terrace, BC.
"It didnt take long for me to become an addict. When I graduated I moved to terrace and have spent the last 6 years exploring the area and chasing a tight line. Now I am a second year guide for northpacificspey fishing charters. I would have to say my favorite species is chinook salmon, but steelies are a close second. Favorite technique is definitely swinging flies."
Felix Geiser has been fly fishing for as long as he can remember, and guiding since 2003 on the Upper Pitt River, The west coast of Vancouver Island, Haida Gwaii and Skeena River System.Born and raised in the Vancouver area of British Columbia, he grew up fishing all the areas rivers for Steelhead, Salmon, Trout and Sturgeon.In the Summer you can find him In Winter Harbour, on the north west tip of Vancouver Island chasing chrome salmon, Halibut and Tuna on both Fly and conventional methods. In the Fall it’s all about chasing ocean chrome anadromous fish on the world famous Skeena River system, where he guides for a world class operation. Felix spends Over 200 + hard days on the water for large powerful fish and is very demanding of quality fishing gear that will get the job done and put up with the abuse. This is why he is proud to represent Forged Fishing products. He is all about supporting local BC products, that are made to last and perform at price point that will be very appealing to any angler.
Forged Field Staff
FORGED® Field Staff represent the majority of who we cater to: anglers who pursue this lifestyle passionately, and like Pro Staff, are stewards to our environment. Field Staff also act as Ambassadors for FORGED®, and contribute to our designs and testing. If you're fortunate enough to meet them on the water, be sure to introduce yourself, because not only are they great anglers, they're great folks!
Mike has had a love of fishing that began when he was a small boy, spending the weekends fishing for trout off the seaplane docks in the Campbell river estuary with his father. 3 years ago he picked up his first fly rod and tying kit. That first trout ignited a passion that has done nothing but grow. Any time not at work you'll find Mike out floating around his favourite local lakes in a pontoon boat chasing trout and bass, swinging flies on local rivers for salmon/steelhead or scouting beaches for the next good searun hole. "FORGED® products allow me to follow my passion no matter the season, no matter the species, without breaking the bank." Much of our best photography comes from Mike, and for that we thank him.
Kara has been fishing Northern Saskatchewan ever since she was old
enough to hold a rod. After moving to Alberta three years ago, she
started fly fishing and discovered a whole new world of opportunity.
Brian’s interest in fishing started about
55 years ago when his father first put a rod in his hands. He naturally
progressed through a variety of fishing styles until he came upon fly fishing some
45 years ago, and the art and science of studying the water and throwing flies
has been his passion ever since.
“We are quite blessed here in Manitoba to have an abundance of lakes and rivers, which provide us the opportunity to target numerous species of fish. This is actually great for me because next to fishing, there is nothing I enjoy more than tying my own flies, and the varying food sources for the numerous local fish species gives me a great excuse to spend many hours during the long winter months huddled over my vise."
Hadden has been a fly angler since 12 years old, his first experiences beginning on the Liard and Tetsa rivers. Learning from his father, his passion for the sport has continued to grow ever since. Some favorite places to fish are the Halfway River and its tributaries, small freestone streams casting dries to rainbows and grayling. Hadden also enjoys exploring the beautiful waters that the Peace Region has to offer. Forged® is happy to benefit from Hadden's experience and passion for our sport, and if you see him out on the river, make sure to say Hi!
"I have been fly fishing for about seven years, My life revolves around it. I spend most of my time fishing in Lake St Clair in South East Michigan for smallmouth and Muskie on the fly. Once summer comes around I spend most of the summer months up north chasing smallmouth and carp on the flats. I also have a passion for filming and taking pictures of fish. Smallmouth bass are my favorite species to target because you can catch them in so many different ways, whether topwater or stripping streamers. My Instagram name is flyfishing_life and if you see me on the water say hello !"