With the distinguished list of guide alumni, guiding at Alaska West Lodge is almost a rite of passage for any fly fishing guide. Many awesome guides have come through Alaska West. Many innovations have come from Guides at Alaska West. More importantly, Alaska West guides have a great reputation for putting guests in situations that create remarkable fly fishing experiences. All the Alaska West guides continue to uphold this reputation in a long-standing tradition, and guide Chris Childs is no exception.
Born in San Bernardino, California, Chris quickly moved to Oregon as soon as possible. Chris guides at Alaska West Lodge in the summers. In true outdoorsman form, Chris enjoys fishing and hunting for himself during the fall and winter months. Chris has probably guided you if you’ve been to Alaska West these past few years. If not, you will be. Let’s get to know Chris and how he thinks.
Deneki Outdoors – DO: How did you end up becoming a guide?
Chris Childs – CC: I was young, hungry, and some might say dumb when I found myself around a few guides that needed someone to carry their stuff!
DO: What’s your nickname, and how did you acquire it?
CC: Sure do, but you’ll have to come by Landmark Saloon some night to hear those stories.
DO: Who is the biggest influence in your life?
CC: If we’re talking fishing, which I hope we are… Matt McCrary. Ripping caster, insane fly tier, dialed guide, and no-frills wild man giving me the best tutelage a kid could ask for when it comes to swinging flies for salmon/steelhead and drinking Scotch.
DO: If you are forced to live on a deserted island for the rest of your life, what is one music album you’d take with you?
CC: Jimmy Buffet, Cheeseburger in Paradise! If I’m living on a deserted island, better believe we’re partying. Where my parrot heads at?
DO: What is the last book you read?
CC: Not the last book I read, but one of the best I’ve read in a long while. Wings of the North by Dick Turner. Incredible read. Thanks, Bama.
DO: Your favorite food?
CC: Seen Savahn with Tham Mak Hoong and sticky rice! Loa heavenly jerky (made with antelope) and papaya salad with some sticky rice all day.
DO: What’s one thing most people don’t know about you?
CC: Hard to see under all this Goretex, but I’m tattooed from my collar bone to my toe knuckles and used to do em’ for a living.
DO: What is the most important thing you do to get your day started?
CC: Black, sludgy coffee.
DO: What did you want to be when you were a kid?
CC: Fishing guide at Alaska West Lodge, of course.
DO: What’s one skill you wish you could learn?
CC: The Lindy hop
DO: What personality trait makes a great guide?
CC: Patience and insight. But if you can’t dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bushwah.
DO: What do you think is the best thing about Alaska West Lodge?
CC: Alaska West is steeped in tradition and innovation when it comes to pursuing anadromous fish on the fly. Not to mention the ripping staff that truly cares to carry on that tradition, insanely perfect river, and big eager fish!
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