Your name or any nicknames you have?

I get called Liv a lot.

Where are you at in the world? Where will you be fishing this year?

Beautiful western North Carolina! With only a couple years under my belt I still have rivers here at home to explore! This coming year I’m hoping to experience more salt water fishing with my honey!

Olivia holds up a rainbow trout

What river(s) and lake(s) do you guide/fish?

An angler never tells their secrets, haha but I will say that here western North Carolina there are endless rivers to fish here! 

How long have you been guiding/fly fishing? 

I have been fly fishing a little more than two years now!

What got you into fly fishing? When did you start? 

I grew up fishing but never with a fly rod. With always being outside taking photos I saw people fly fishing and thought I could do that. I wanted to try it for myself and from that point I was hooked! 

Olivia fishes in a lush forest

Why do you fly fish?  What does it “do” for you?

 Fly fishing has always been a way to slow down, take a step back, and breath. As a photographer I always see the absolute beauty of fly fishing; the river, surrounding environment, the delicate creatures in the river and the opportunity to be apart of it all. For me angling does so much. It has built friendships, gave me the chance to spend time with the man of my dreams, and get involved and become more aware of the beautiful place we live in. 

As a woman guide/angler, you’re definitely in the minority.  What made you decide to be a guide/angler? 

I chose to start fly fishing because stepping into the river and casting a fly rod became something I loved to do. It was a challenge, a way to relax, unwind and connect. It doesn’t matter if I’m the only girl on the water or there was only women on the river; when you find something you love it becomes apart of you, your life. Sure, I love seeing other women on the water, sharing our stories and having a good laugh but I never think of women anglers as a minority.

Olivia fishes from the front of a boat

Do you think being a woman gives you a different perspective as an angler/guide?  If so, how?

Yeah, sure! I think women can be competitive, but more often than not we tend to be calm, more laid back. Fly fishing is seen more as a chance to relax more than a sport.

What is a piece of advice you want to give to other anglers or a tip/trick that has helped you grow as an angler?

Be patient! For multiple reasons…. fly fishing is not something that can be mastered in one day. Even now, a couple years into it, I am still learning and still finding myself having to be patient. Locating fish, figuring out what they eat, untangling line, settling up your rod; it all takes time and is always worth it! 

What’s your favorite new piece of gear?

It’s so simple but my Tacky boxes are the best… when you’re standing in the middle of the river with your hands full having a fly box that’s easy to open and close becomes a game changer!

Olivia fishes with a friend

What is your favorite fly? (To tie, or catch fish on?) 

#20 Prince Nymph… It has never let me down! 

Best catch of all time?

My first wild brook trout. The bright orange belly and fins are hard to miss on a river and being able to see it up close is a special experience. Even now I get the same excitement when I catch one!

A wild brook trout

What’s your “Dream Trip”? 

Spend a couple weeks down in New Zealand fishing and camping for big wild browns! Especially the in the crystal clear waters of the Dart River and between the towering mountains on the Eglinton River.

How do people follow you on social media or reach you? 

I share a lot of my experiences and photos on Instagram – @Oliviadwil 

Olivia and a f friend smile for a picture

About The Author

Jill Kana

Jill is in charge of a great deal of our web content here at Denver Outfitters and is always looking for potential blog contributors, content, and #FlyGalFridays. If you have any desire to say hello or have an idea, please touch base with her at jill@denveroutfitters.com

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