Welcome to our series called “Trout Bum of the Week,” in which we highlight some of the folks living the good life. . .of a sort. (See the bottom of this post for a link to the previous installments.) Most of the subjects are guides who have turned their passion into a vocation, spending their time in an outdoor “office” that may include a drift boat, gorgeous mountain scenery, and crystal clear water. Others do have day jobs but manage to spend every other available minute on the water with a fly rod in hand. Whether you aspire to one lifestyle or the other, it’s illuminating to explore the different paths these men and women have taken on their way to achieving “trout bum” status.
Alvin Dedeaux is the owner of All Water Guides (2015 Orvis Guide Service of the Year Finalist) and Alvin Dedeaux Fly Fishing in Austin, Texas. He spends most of his time chasing largemouths and Guadalupe bass in the warmwater rivers of the region. During the heat of the summer, he heads north to Colorado to guide for a few months in the Vail Valley and on the Colorado River (not to be confused with his home water, the Colorado River in Texas).
1. When did you start fly fishing?
I got my first fly rod for my 12th birthday in 1976. I had never even seen anyone fly fish. I read about fly fishing in a book at school and told my parents that I wanted a fly rod for my birthday. Somehow they found one. I caught a lot of bass and sunfish on that rod..
2. What’s your favorite water?|
I have been lucky enough to fish a lot of great places, but I think my home waters are still my favorite:the Colorado River downstream from Austin, Texas.
3. What’s your favorite species to chase with a fly rod and why?
That’s a tough one. I spend about half the year fishing for trout and the other half for bass. At the moment, would say bass are tops. I recently finished with 50 trout trips and just got back to the bass. I might be craving trout again in a couple of months.
4. What’s your most memorable fly-fishing moment?
The day my wife was rowing and I caught my biggest bass on the San Marcos River. I caught the fish on a 5-weight rod and a popper. A couple of hours later, she caught her personal best on the same rig. We spent an entire day on the water without seeing another person.
5. What is your most forgettable fly-fishing moment?
I was about 15 and I was riding my bike home from a great day of fishing when the neighbor’s dog ran out to chase me like he did every day. I decided to scare him and pedaled right at him, had to turn at the last minute and my rod went right into the spokes of my front tire snapping my rod and sending me over the handlebars.
6. What do you love most about fly fishing?
The friendships and memories. Almost everyone I spend any time with in my life is into fly fishing.
7. What’s your favorite piece of gear and why?
Right now it is my 7-weight Recon fly rod. It can toss the biggest bass bugs with ease, as well as double streamers for trout. It can even handle the heaviest double-nymph-and-strike-indicator rig for when things get really desperate.
9. What was your favorite fly-fishing trip?
Current fave would have to be my honeymoon in Belize, chasing bonefish, permit, and tarpon. My wife had never heard of a permit before that trip, and she vowed to catch one. On our second day on the water, we found a school of feeding permit, and she made a perfect cast to the school. Two permit charged out and were racing each other for the fly. I was going to cry if my wife caught a permit on our honeymoon, but from out of nowhere, a bonefish charged in and ate the fly! Even though she didn’t get the permit, I’ll never forget that moment.
10. How do you define the difference between someone who loves fly fishing and a true trout bum?
I would say the true trout bum is the person who, for better or worse, just has to spend as much time on the water as possible.