With years of fishing experience, a passion for educating others and a lot of flexibility, being a professional charter fishing guide is one of those jobs where work doesn’t feel like work.

In the state of Oregon, to become a charter fishing guide one will need to register with the Oregon State Marine Board. The board recognizes these individuals as Outfitter Guides.

Along with registering there are a number of minimum requirements they need to meet, such as providing proof of insurance, having basic First Aid and CPR skills and having an updated Passenger Boat Operator’s certification or license.

Outfitter Guides have options of choosing [More information can be found at https://www.oregon.gov/osmb/Pages/Guides-Charters.aspx]

Betty Kay fishing charter catch
Captain Kurt Smith of Betty Kay Charters

Aside from the legal side of what it takes to be a professional charter fishing guide, it is important for Outfitters to be familiar with their local area. Taking groups of people out to sea to catch fish can be more of an experience if the guide is knowledgeable about the local marine wildlife, history and weather patterns of the area.

Fishing charter companies will usually start preparing for the next days tours the night before. Getting the lines and bait ready and checking the National Weather Service are just a few of the things that need to be done before the usual 4 am wake up call on the day of a tour.

Guides are usually prepared to take one or two tours a day, depending on the season. On the Oregon Coast they can catch Lingcod, Rockfish, Tuna, Salmon, Chinook, Steelhead and Halibut.

As unpredictable the weather can be at the Coast, flexibility is important, along with people able to communicate to clients. Think you have what it takes to be a professional charter fishing guide?

When we are lucky, the skies are clear and if light pollution is low then the sky above is filled with stars. It is a spectacular view to see and if you look close you can see some important starts that have been used for navigation for a very long time.

The Big Dipper

The Big Dipper is an asterism, or a group of notable stars that form a pattern, in the constellation Ursa Major, also known as the Great Bear. Due to it’s prominent shape and brightness, it is one of the most familiar star shapes in the northern sky.

It contains eight stars where seven are usually visible to most. The Big Dipper is named for the shape the stars appear in, a handle and a bowl.

Each of these stars have a name. Starting from the handle and going around to the bottom of the bowl they are known as: Alkaid, Mizar-Alcor (the first double star to be discovered through a telescope), Aloith, Megrex, Phecda, Merak and Dubhe.


Another important star to know is the North Star, Polaris. This star is very easy to find if you know where the Big Dipper is.

If you draw a line through the two outer stars of the bowl it points right to it! Many sailors’ depended on this star to navigate because it points the direction of north.

Using the Big Dipper to find the North Star
Portrait of a Couple at Niagara Falls in Waterproof Clothing (1860s) Ambrotype by Henry Hollister, image via The Getty Museum

Tourism in the United States began some time after the European settlers arrived. They were too busy to take time to vacation.

However, in the early 1660s, Americans started traveling to spas and mineral springs for relaxation, with the goal of maintaining or improving their health.

Encouraging Acts

In the mid-1800s, the Bahamas and its government passed multiple acts that encouraged the promotion and infrastructure for tourist to come to the islands. Along with the Bahamas becoming a popular tourist destination, Niagara Falls became a notable hot spot for tourist.

The popularity of tourist spiked after the Civil War due to improved infrastructure such as railroads where it made people more mobile. Due to the time commitment and slow transportation time, it was still an activity for the elite, those that could afford to take time off of work, because a vacation meant an extended stay.


As one could guess, the basic form of tourism was practiced after World War II when more people, such as the middle-class, had access to automobiles and the luxury of paid time off benefits.

Today, only a third of American families will take a vacation, yet tourism revenues in the United States reached an all time high of $21,547,000 USD in May of 2018.