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Frequently Asked Questions

Updated: May 20, 2022

The most common questions and answers regarding going out on a guided fishing trip

How many people can come on the trip?

The boat is rated for the Captain and 3 passengers, but that's pretty crowded. Ideally, one or two people fishing works out well, and if fly fishing, we generally take turns unless we run into a blitz or school of feeding fish.

What's included in a trip?

It depends on what's been booked, but fishing equipment, lures, tackle, flies, live bait, all safety equipment are always included on a fishing charter. Many folks prefer to bring their own fly rod or favorite bass rod, and I'm happy to chat about that in advance to make sure we're maximizing our chances at catching fish. A meal or snacks will be provided depending on your trip and non-alcoholic beverages are included as well (let me know if you have favorites you'd like on the boat). When you're with a licensed guide, you don't need an individual fishing license whether on the boat or wade fishing!

What should I bring?

Sunblock (lotion - no spray on allowed on the boat, as it can be a slip hazard)

A hat (preferably with a dark brim)

Polarized sunglasses with brown, bronze, or amber lenses. Sunglasses are the key to successful sight fishing on those bright days. I highly recommend Smith Optics, but some others prefer Costa Del Mar or Oakley for high end shades, and Huk and Calcutta both make lower cost versions.

Rain Gear is always good to have in case of a surprise storm we can't get away from

A celebratory beer. As a USCG Captain and business owner, I can't provide alcohol, but if you want a couple drinks on the boat, you're welcome to bring them. No glass on board, and remember that this isn't a booze cruise, and being out on the water requires good decision making - getting drunk will be a sure fire way to end the trip early.

What is the cancellation policy?

A trip cancelled more than 7 days in advance will have the deposit fully refunded. Less than 7 days will lead to a forfeit of your deposit. If there are boat issues, weather issues, or some other reason that we can't take the client out, VB Backwater will issue a full refund or reschedule if possible.

Can I keep the fish I catch?

I strongly prefer to catch and release the fish that we catch. Beyond that, most fish we target don't freeze well, and wasting a harvested fish is the opposite of conservation. This is your trip, though, and if a fish is caught that can be legally harvested, I'm not opposed to taking one fish per on board angler to eat that or the next day. There are also some local restaurants that will "cook your catch" that I can point you to if on vacation. My personal limitations are that I will not harvest any striped bass and I will not harvest any speckled trout over 20". This fishery is my livelihood. We do a lot to protect it, but it still takes a beating. If you still wish to harvest a fish, let me know in advance so I can make sure I have everything we need to prep and keep the meat fresh.

Should I tip the Captain?

Tips are always appreciated, but never assumed. We will work very hard before, during, and after your trip to try and exceed all of your expectations, and if you feel a gratuity is earned, we'd be very grateful to receive one.

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