Mile High Fishing Charters Lake Tahoe Owner and Captain Joby Cefalu was interviewed in October 2019 for the Fish On Ted podcast. In this interview Captain Joby gives us an in-depth look at the history of sports fishing in Lake Tahoe. If you are a sports fishermen this interview will make you want to add a trip to Lake Tahoe to your bucket list.
It is really eye opening to learn about this most amazing lake and all the Trophy Sports Fishing it has to offer. From giant Lake Trout to huge Rainbows and Brown Trout, Lake Tahoe has something to catch 12 months out of the year.
Below is transcription of the interview. Because transcriptions can be a bit hard to follow at times you can click on this link and listen to the entire interview right here on your computer.
Fish On Ted Interview – “Lake Tahoe – Trophy Lake Trout And Trophy Rainbow Trout“
Ted J: Well hello, this is Ted Johnson with the Fish on ted Podcast. And I wanna thank everybody for tuning in today. This recording is being made right in the beginning of October of the 2019 season right in the middle of a season changes for a lot of people whether you’re on the West coast or on the East coast and gearing up the fish work for other types of fish or other types of conditions. Today, we have a special guest. Our guest is Joby Cefalu from Lake Tahoe and Joby has a guide in charter service on Lake Tahoe if you can imagine. And without stealing much of his thunder, Joby are you there?
Joby C: Yes sir.
Ted J: Hello!
Joby C: How are you today?
Ted J: Great! How are you Joby?
Joby C: I’m doing well.
Ted J: Terrific. Terrific. How’s fishing been?
Joby C: Fishing on Tahoe is always very good. It’s has beautiful views, great fishing. Pretty much one of the best places to go fishing in the world.
Joby’s Background On Fishing Lake Tahoe And Becoming A Fishing Guide
Ted J: I’ll bet it is. Joby, I’m just curious, I know that you’ve said to me that you grew up in Lake Tahoe but how did you start fishing or how old were you when you started fishing? Was there somebody in your life that got you into water and got this bug started?
Joby C: You know Ted, that’s a good question. I don’t remember when I started fishing, all I remember is fishing. So it’s been pretty much most of my life. I’m younger than both my brother and sister by you know, 5 or 6 years. We’re very fortunate to live here in Lake Tahoe and one of our local schools, a teacher by the name of Doug Fort would take those classes camping each year. That camping trip was done down in down in Markleeville. I was aged 4 or 5 the first couple of times I did it.
Ted J: Wow,
Joby C: Yeah yeah. All the 5th and 6th graders would be out having a good time and I’ll have my rod at the river. One of the first big fish I remember catching was about a 27 inch cutthroat trout. I caught that cutthroat trout in Markleeville California. It was funny because I fished that river by myself. The next thing I knew there was about 60 5th and 6th graders with their rods in the water after that. I’ll never forget what that teacher said, and I tell my guests to this day. He said, “Joby, you would catch fish in a toilet.” I know that’s a kind of a weird statement but it stuck. That was the first big fish I remember catching Ted.
Ted J: Wow and it just grew from there.
Joby C: You bet. And I don’t know how familiar you are with Lake Tahoe but in Tahoe there’s an end of the waterway called the Tahoe Keys. The Tahoe Keys was developed in the 1950s and finally was finished in the late 60’s and what it is is a Marsh Land that was dug out. Tahoe is very unique in a sense that it is 100% snowpack or the water is derived from the snow.
Ted J: Right.
Joby C: There are about 73 inflows and just 1 outflow. One of the major inflows is the Upper Truckee River on the south shore and they dug out the Upper Truckee River marsh and made that into Tahoe Keys. An environmental nightmare, kind of a problem for the ecosystem but a great place to live and grow up. So that’s where I grew up, Ted.
Ted J: Wow! No kidding. Why, why did they do that? Was it for water conservation? What was the purpose?
Joby C: No, it was all development. It was basically to build lots on the water, I’ve lived here my whole life and lot of people may take offense to the term I use, but it’s a, it’s a poor man’s lake front. That’s what it is. So, it was about twelve hundred homes, twelve hundred homes along the water way here and the water way leads straight out to the channel that leads you to the lake. Growing up it was wonderful. I had a small skiff that my uncle Leo, a great man, and my great uncle, was a World War II vet, gave me the small skip with the small Johnson out board on it and for the most part, I attribute that to staying out of trouble or staying out of jail. I fished every day of my life from the time I remember.
Ted J: Did you really? No kidding. What a great story. When did the transition happened, Joby to make this into a profession?
Joby C: Well, my family was in a tourist related business. We had a laundry, so we serve, we serve the entire towel basin and we did laundry, commercial sheets and towels and napkins and tablecloths for the restaurants and motels.
Ted J: Yeah.
Joby C: And we did that my whole life. My grandfather started that business here in town, back in , gosh he bought it back in the early fifties, late forties early fifties. My Mom grew up doing it, my dad got in the business and so I pretty much expected to be in the laundry business. So I went to school at Chico California, California State University, Chico, which was a great place for a sportsman to go to school. I have to admit, I was a marketing major but I did more hunting and fishing than I did school to be honest with you. Such a great place to go to school and to catch fish and duck hunt and all the different things that the Sacramento river basin has to offer.
Ted J: Yeah.
Joby C: When I graduated from school or when I left school, I left without my degree. When I left school, I came home to run a family business, shortly thereafter we sold out. So I had a couple of choices to make at that point and I had worked in the commercial salmon fishing business with my Uncle Leo, I already mentioned his name.
Ted J: Right.
Joby C: And so it was always a passion. I worked for the company for several years, my son was born and I want to move home so I got my Coastguard license and bought a boat and that was the beginning. And that was in 1997.
Ted J: Really? So you’ve been doing this for what? 22 years now, something like that.
Joby C: Yah, been Fortunate enough to this for 22 years.
Ted J: Now in Lake Tahoe with all the snow and the weather that you have is the lake available year long to fish?
How Many Months Of The Year Can You Fish Lake Tahoe
Joby C: You know, it’s a great fishery 12 months out of the year, Ted. there are some issues or some definite barriers in getting on the water but for the most part we’ve overcome those barriers. I operate out of the Tahoe Keys Marina. The Tahoe Keys is at the end of the waterway. A lot of people ask me is does Lake Tahoe freeze? Well no, the lake does not freeze but the end of the waterway does. So we keep that cleared out, they put buffers in the water basically just like little propellers on the water to keep the water moving, to keep it from freezing. And then those areas that aren’t being moved, you run a tug boat through. We have access to lake 12 months out of the year.
Ted J: No kidding. And you’re targeting the same species 12 months long, mackinaw and trout that sort of thing?
Joby C: We will, so there’s four main game species in Lake Tahoe, Ted. We have lake trout also known as mackinaw. They are from the char family. They are deep water fish and they enjoy temperatures of, I shouldn’t say they enjoy, they live in temperatures that vary from 39 to 50 degrees, 40-44 is about where they like it. Well, we also have rainbow trout and brown trout, trophy rainbow trout, they’re beautiful fish caught over 10 lbs. every year and we then have a healthy population of kokanee salmon. The kokanee salmon have had some issues inside of the lake. Lots have to feed the lake, so certain stuff I like to talk about it later in your podcast. But those four main species we target. The lake trout or a 12 months species or twelve month target or fishing all year long. The rainbows and browns, they are gonna be easiest to target in late fall and spring because of the water temperatures on the surface.
Ted J: Right.
Joby C. And they kinda disappear in the summer months and in the winter months. They just go dormant to winter. And then kokanee, those guys come in and usually they run from anywhere from May to late August to September. This year, they were a little late, they’re still in but they run a normal life cycle as the salmon does four to five years, depending on the fish and the year. And those are the four target species.
Kokanee Salmon In Lake Tahoe
Ted J: Got it. Let’s talk a little about the kokanee salmon. I would imagine that of course our listeners from the west coast are familiar with kokanee. Probably the farther east rwe go in the US are listeners in South America are not familiar with kokanee salmon. Can you share that story with us?
Joby C: The kokanee salmon are landlocked coho salmon. Now these are delicious fish and they have been a very popular fish in the western United States because they can be a hatchery fish or, they can be raised in a hatchery. They can be planted in different lakes and they are fairly easy to populate as they live on that four, five year cycle as I mentioned. Just like of any of the pacific salmon species they’re going to have a four to five year life cycle. They’re gonna be born on the river, live in the river as fry for that the 1st year. After that first year, they move to the open water just as they would in the pacific ocean if they were an ocean bearing fish. They would then move into the Pacific Ocean, they hide in the deep water, where they can find feed for those years until they became a predator fish which is usually in the third, fourth to fifth year depending on the size of the fish. At that point, third, fourth to fifth year usually fourth or fifth for most of the salmon species, they congregate in areas where they can feed heavily before they head up the river to spawn and to start out that lifecycle over again. So, essentially once they feed and get large and they’ll move in those fresh water rivers as well and they will spawn in those rivers, and then die. So the state have found those to be easy fish to raise, very delicious fish for the anglers to catch, and so they are very popular fish throughout most of the western United States for the average angler to go out, you know, catch a bag-full.
Ted J: You bet! And now, how big do they get in Lake Tahoe?
Joby C: Well the lake record was caught just a few years ago by one of the charter companies in Lake Tahoe and it was about, actually that was a state record, it was five and a quarter pounds, , a beautiful fish.
Ted J: Yah, no kidding. That’s incredible.
Joby C: It’s unusual that the fish that large was caught here in recent years, because the fish had been shrinking overtime, just lack of heat, genetic issues at the hatchery where they get mixed with other batches of fish but there was one lot of big fish and one of the better fisherman on the lake that had fishrf on the charter boat for my competitor, he’s a great kokanee fisherman caught that fish. I believe that was 3 or 4 years ago and that lot of fish that he caught him out of, were all real big. Obviously, not as big as that one but all real big fish.
Ted J: Wow! No kidding! What’s the limit on Tahoe?
Joby C: Tahoe is five fish, you can keep up to five fish. And you know, you probably get forty to fifty bites in the morning and they have really soft mouths so it’s hard to keep them on the hook, so catching five can be really easy some days or very challenging depending on the day. A lot of it has to do with the soft mouth just plan them right.
Ted J: Right, right, interesting. You know, I’ve never known, I believe geographically, that Tahoe sits on sort of the border that is between Nevada and California, am I right?
Lake Tahoe Fisheries Are Managed By California And Nevada
Joby C: Tahoe is two-thirds California and one-third Nevada. The state in our country gets less and less cooperative as time goes on. This is one leg that they still reciprocate, you can fish with a California or Nevada fishing license. You can fish on the shore of Nevada with a California or vice-versa. California no longer does any enhancement on the fishery. They don’t do anything. They’re trying to repopulate the fish with the cutthroat trout which we can talk a little bit about the history of lake and the history of fishery later in your podcast. But California has, California fishing wildlife has done very little in recent years to enhance Lake Tahoe as a fishery. But that still stock a few rainbow trout and its appreciated that they do that but unfortunately most of those rainbow trout have been eaten by mackinaw or the lake trout because mackinaw or lake trout is on top of the food chain. But the ones that do make it does help supplement that fishery and as I mentioned we have trophy rainbow Trout and brown trout in our lake. So anything that supplements that fisheries is fantastic.
Ted J: Oh absolutely! So you get rainbow up to 10 pounds in the lake?
Joby C: Yah, there been rainbow caught. I believe the lake record is about 15 ½ lbs. for the rainbow trout and 16.5 lbs or 16.8 lbs for the brown trout.
Ted J: No kidding! Is that a native fish to Lake Tahoe then?
Species Of Fish In Lake Tahoe
Joby C: No, Ted. None of the species of game fish of the lake are native to Lake Tahoe. The native species of the Lake Tahoe are the Paiute cutthroat trout. There’s pictures and stories of fish being five feet long.
Ted: No kidding!
Joby C: They were commercially harvested in late 1800s during the boom in Virginia City in Nevada.
Joby C: Along with that commercial harvesting of those fish, we had the army corp of engineers built the dam. That dam on the northwest shore of the lake, the Truckee River, the one out of the lake. The Paiute cutthroat trout spawn upstream. And between the commercial harvesting and the dam that the army corp of engineers built on the lake, it wiped out the population of the Paiute cutthroat trout. And those populations pretty much were gone around 1910, which is a bad thing because they were beautiful fish. They’re no longer.
Ted: I can imagine a five foot long trout. That’s a beast, man.
Joby C.: Yah, they had been here a long time and we do have a native bait fish the red side chewey chub. We have also mountain white fish, top of white fish as people call him and those are all native to the lake as well. But the game species are not, they were all put in around that early part of the 1900s and I think the Kokanee were put in a little bit later. There were a lot of other fish that didn’t make it. At least as the story goes. The lake trout I believe, you know the population of the lake trout in the late 70’s, there’s a great book called “Fishing like Tahoe” by a gentleman by the name of John Roush. John Roush, is one of the pioneers of fishing on Lake Tahoe. He estimated the population of Lake trout to be hundreds of millions back in the late 70’s.
Ted J: Oh my gosh.
Joby C: We don’t think that some days we can’t catch them but when you see them stuck up on a sonar it’s pretty evident there’s a lot of fish in Lake Tahoe.
Lake Tahoe Lake Trout
Ted J: Wow! No kidding! So predominantly is it the lake trout that you fish for when somebody books a charter with you?
Joby C: You bet, there at the top of the food chain, so when I first started fishing, I always thought that my bread was gonna be buttered with a kokanee salmon. At that time, I guess in the late 1990’s, we’d catch 2 ½ lbs. kokanee, fairly common 22 inches 24 inches beautiful fish. The bite was very consistent and then unfortunately they just shrunk due to a few reasons. The state of California back in the 70’s put mysis shrimp in Lake Tahoe and they did that thinking that they would grow the kokanee salmon to even larger than they were. The mysis shrimp go deep during the day when the sun’s up and they go shallow at night. The kokanee salmon are opposite. They go shallower during the day and deeper at night. So they figured that mysis shrimp and kokanee will cross and the kokanee would feed on the shrimp and that they would be 6lbs, 7lbs but they didn’t. And what they didn’t take into account was the fact that the mysis shrimp feed on plankton, just like the coho salmon feed on plankton. So the mysis shrimp begin to beat the food supply of the kokanee and what ended up happening was the mysis shrimp ended up being one of the staple in the mackinaw or lake trout diet. I would have actually sided with the fish and wildlife on that one, and thought that’s a great idea. But whenever we get too caught up in trying to be Mother Nature, I think its turned out we are wrong more often than not. Somethings are just better left alone. And, you know now there’s talk of eradication of the mysis shrimp, eradication of the lake trout, eradication of this, eradication of that. Well, best of luck to them. And once again, its time, you know, people just quit messing up things and enjoy the fishery for what it is and maybe helping hand with another species or two, eradication it’s just, I don’t think it’s gonna happen.
Ted J: Yes, it’s too big a body of water, you can’t even attempt something like that.
Joby C: No, you’re looking for a needle in a haystack. There is the mysis shrimp and there’s a whole bunch of them in the haystack so it’s gonna be a little too difficult to eradicate those. Then from the perspective of the lake trout, almost impossible to eradicate those. They’re the top of the food chain. Tahoe’s not a lake you can drain. In fact, the amount of water in Lake Tahoe, the volume of water in Lake Tahoe is so great that you could dump out the lake into the state of California and you’ll have about 14 inches of water across the entire state. That’s a massive volume of water.
Ted J: It’s deep isn’t it? Holy smokes.
Joby C: You bet.
Typical Day On Lake Tahoe With Mile High Fishing Charters
Ted J: Wow. So you target lake trout, what’s a typical day like in the water with you, Joby?
Joby C: Well, I have, I’ve become very binary in the type of fishing that I do. I choose one type of fishing, sometimes two. I jig fish primarily and I jig fish for multiple reasons. Number one, I jig fish with light tackle. Light tackle is a lot more fun to catch a lake trout on as you’re fishing deep than it is the heavier stuff that some people use in Lake Tahoe. So a typical day, we’re gonna leave you know at sunrise, head out in the lake and we’re gonna go head out and do some vertical jigging for lake trout. We use a jig that is unique to us. The jigs are sold but they are made by a gentleman by the name of Ryan Wallace, Captain Ryan Jig Company. Ryan worked for Mile High Fishing years ago, had some health issues, battled cancer and beat it and bought the mold for those jigs. They are fantastic jigs on Lake Tahoe. We head out and we jig for the lake trout. When we do that, we’re using, today we’re using a 6-8 medium wide rod and we slip a Captain Ryan Jig tip with the middle of that. Lately we’ve been fishing anywhere from 80 to 120 feet of water. We’ll drop right in to that 80 foot down to the bottom, bringing up a few crates and we work those jigs right off the bottom.
Ted J: Wow.
Joby C: Fishing has been really good. You’re gonna average maybe 5 or 6 fish per rod on a daily basis. Sometimes more, sometimes less obviously that’s the average. These fish are gonna average in size of anywhere from 3-5 pounds. I know that’s kind of a big number on the average but considering they get into that upper thirties and you have pretty constant fish in a 3-4 pound range, some days that average can be 5 or 6 pounds, some days that average can be 2-3 pounds. If that makes any sense to the anglers out there, that average can fluctuate daily but fishing is really good. It’s a lot of fun and light tackle on Tahoe with jigging is really the way to go.
Ted J: Oh absolutely. I mean, in my opinion, the lighter, the better. I’ve always enjoyed that. The mackinaw or the lake trout fishing I’ve done, a lot of it has been done with down rriggers and cannon balls you know, you don’t even know if you’re getting a strike you know.
Joby C: You know, I’ve done it all and Ive done a lot of down rigging, Ive done a lot of trolling. I just heard too many people say, “Gosh, I’ve watched you from the down riggers and then you hand me the rod once the fish is on.” You know I try and have my anglers involved everyday in everything that we do. You know, there are some safety issues with down riggers if you havent run them, but it’s certainly not rocket science. Over the years, since gosh 2010, I don’t think I’ve trolled on a charter at all. I mean I jigged. I just have too many people enjoy handling their rod, getting that rod in the water, catching the fish from the bite to the hook set to the net. You can’t argue with happy customers, Ted.
Ted J: Amen. Ain’t that the truth? Now how many fishermen can you put on in a boat for a trip?
Joby C: You know on Lake Tahoe, and there are companies that run more anglers than we do. But I’ve always had, just something in me just doesn’t want to take more than six people. So we stick with the United States Coastguard 6 passenger license, a lot of people call them 6-pac. The two boats we currently have both accommodated 6 people very comfortably. We stick to that 6 number just because I think it’s the best, you can catch the most fish at that number and it’s still comfortable and everybody can do what they need to do without getting lines tangled and such so 6 is our maximum.
The Boats We Run On Lake Tahoe
Ted J: Very good. How big of a boat do you run, Joby?
Joby C: You know, we just picked up this July a 2020 28/25 King Fisher. That’s a 30 foot King Fisher, lots of deck space, big cabin, nice and warm, a beautiful boat. The boat I ran until this year or until July is a 25 foot King Fisher and that boat is beautiful as well. I’m really fortunate that all of our boats are King Fishers and all of our motors are Mercury. We are on tje King Fisher pro staff and Mercury pro staff, very proud of it. Our boat dealer is Gone Fishing Marine and they service and take care of the Mercury’s for us and they service the King Fisher and do a great job.
Ted J: Oh, that’s awesome. That’s a nice boat too and for people that don’t know the dynamics of that boat, you’ve got a big cabin on there. You’ve probably run heaters in the winter time and keep everybody toast and warm while you’re getting to and from fishing grounds.
Joby C: You know we’ve had an early start to winter this year, Ted. I’ve had people very concerned about being cold in the water and such. They show up their in their parkas and they’re scared to death of what the day is gonna hold. Then they climb on our boats. The boats have really nice propane heaters in them and it’s 75 degrees in the cabin and a nice place to warm up during the trip. Whether it’s summer time and you have lots of sun and you need to get out of it or it’s winter time and it’s cold, the cabins are just beautiful.
Fishing Trips Offered By Mile High Fishing Charters
Ted J: Now, do you run what half days or full days, what do you offer in regards to the length of time?
Joby C: We do both. Our half day trips are 4-5 hours. Those trips go out both morning and afternoon. We have in the summer time a 6 o’clock departure and a 12 o’clock departure and winter time 7 or 8 o’clock departure and then again at 1 or 2. Part of the winter we just do one departure at 9 AM, we won’t do a second. Then we also do full day charters. Those charters are 6-7 hours. Those go early and you know, we just go get them. The full day charters are best both fall and spring when we can fish multiple species of fish. I don’t always take, but there are a lot of people, Ted, they want to go out for the 7-hour trip, they don’t want to do a 5-hour trip just cause they love being on the water. We do them all year round but I suggest those fall and winter.
Ted J: Very good. Now you run an open boat concept or is this all guided or solo or guided charter?
Joby C: When you asked open boat but private boat I think is what you mean, we specialize in private boats but we do open charters as well, upto 6 people in a mixed group. We do, we have a very reasonable price for private charters. When it comes to private charters, people look to us because they can get out, they can get their party out, it doesn’t cost them an arm and a leg and they can enjoy the boat just their group, family, office, whatever it might be that they, you know we get a lot of bachelor parties, lots of bachelorette parties and it works out real nice having a private boat.
Large Groups And Corporate Fishing Trips
Ted J: Makes sense. Now if somebody wants to come up from Reno or let’s say Sacramento or the bay area and they want to bring up a group of employees and that sort of thing, can you accommodate larger groups?
Joby C: We can on the two boats and we also work in conjunction with other boats on the lake so we can do groups up to 45 or 50.
Ted J: Wow.
Joby C: We enjoy doing those groups. This year, we had 3 boats on the water so we can handle groups up to 18 just in house. We do team building, scavenger hunt fishing expeditions. We do fishing derbys within those groups. We do everything we can to make it as enjoyable as possible. Being I am a native to Lake Tahoe, we have a lot of connections within the community and we can do things. We have some great places for folks to take their catch afterwards and have it prepared. It’s a really, really great way to finish the day. As you know Ted, being an outdoors yourself, fresh fish the day after being on the water, hours after being on the water just can’t be beaten.
The Fish In Lake Tahoe Are Delicious
Ted J: Nothing better. And the lake trout are pretty good to eat, aren’t they?
Joby C: They are, you know in some places they have a bad reputation cause they sit on the bottom but Lake Tahoe is one of the cleanest, clearest bodies of water on earth. When you have a clean, clear body of water what you have is a very clean, clear and perfect food source. I actually have biologists from the University of Nevada come fishing with me and take some of this fish back to their labs and look at the meat of the fish and the protein of the fish. I can tell you first hand from their experience, these fish have more omega 3s than a salmon does. They are perfectly pure. So in this day and age where a lot of fisheries whether it be the delta or in other places where you are warned not to eat fish more than once a week or twice a month depending on where you are, here at Tahoe you can eat this fish everyday. They are real orange meat, a lot of that has to do with those mysis shrimp I was talking about. And they are one of the best protein sources that you can feed on. The Lake Trout is a sustainable fishery so you’re not having to worry about wiping out a fishery or wiping out the ecosystem. The protein source, the omega 3, it is the perfect food really. They are delicious. The kokanee are delicious. For the most part because the rainbow and brown trout are a limited resource on Lake Tahoe, I try and return most of those fish. So a lot of guys are killing them on a daily basis and it is disappointing cause we wanna see that fishery maintain over the next hundred years inspite of the California Dept of Fish and Wildlife but you know, when you do have to take one because you catch them or how you might hurt or damage that fish, they are excellent eating as well.
Recent Memorable Trip On Lake Tahoe
Ted J: Absolutely. You know over this past summer season, there’s always this one or two trips that you take as a guide and you go gosh, that’s an incredible trip. Do you have one in mind that you take in over the last couple of months that you can share with us?
Joby C: Gosh Ted. I do so many trips it’s really hard to pull out one individually. I can go back to a trip in the Spring and I’ll tell ya, this is for awareness. This is what this is. My mom, Ted, suffers from Alzheimer’s disease. That’s a terrible disease, it’s devastating, it’s debilitating. It’s hard on the family, it’s hard for the people that have it. This year, I had the opportunity to take out a gentlemen, Mike Pinder, one of the original Moody Blues.He is a great man, very very enjoyable trip. He was with his two boys. It was a fantastic group. For me it was particularly memorable because he has Alzheimer’s, Ted. You know, I took him out on a boat and it had so much correlation to my mom’s situation because it was very close to where she was at about a year ago. So for me, taking those guys out and enjoying the fishery that I love so much and letting them enjoy it as well. We got nice fish that day. You know, it was just a great trip. Once again, I mentioned this in the podcast, just to bring awareness to the purple pin that you see people wearing, the purple ribbon that’s the Alzheimer’s ribbon and this awareness develops for Alzheimer’s disease.
Ted J: Yeah, absolutely. I lost my mother in Alzheimer’s just about a year ago. It was a very deteriorating disease that if people haven’t experienced seeing a loved one go through it, it’s kind of shocking is it.
Joby C: It really is. I don’t mean to bring down the podcast. You and I, I’m sure, are gonna have a lasting relationship here and we can talk about some of the funny trips and some of the more serious trips in the future. But I just did want to mention that cause I did very much enjoy it and yes, it is a difficult season. That’s the hashtag end Alzheimer’s, #EndLZ.
What Captain Joby Does In His Time Off
Ted J: Very good. I’m just curious, what are you doing with your time off? It doesn’t sound like you have a whole lot of it but what do you enjoy doing when you’re not in the boat?
Joby C: You know Ted, I coach basketball for a number of years here in Lake Tahoe. You know, I’ve raised two spectacular boys. I am so proud that they are also tall and native. So to be honest the time off I have is mostly spent with family.We do a little bit of travelling. We go try and fish. And then I also have an amazing hunting dog and we do some guided hunting trips as well. I just really enjoy Chucker hunting and quail hunting. Between hunting and fishing and raising my family, that’s pretty much my entire time.
The Tackle And Equipment We Use
Ted J: Very good, very good. In regards to the equipment that you use, are you on a pro staff or have agreements with the tackle manufacturers or that sort of thing going?
Joby C: I do. I’m very fortunate to be part of the Pure Fishing Pro staff. I shouldn’t stay pro staff, select angler program. All my reels are Abu Garcia, top of the line, line counter Abu 6500 C3 line counters. They’re fantastic rods and reels or excuse me, reels. This year I broke off and I used Douglas Rods. Douglas Rods are becoming more and more popular. We use a 6 foot 8, medium light Douglas. They are just fantastic rods. I couldn’t be more happy with them.
Ted J: And you’re using level line reels and that sort of thing primarily?
Joby C: Yeah, the 6500 C3 are level line bait catchers. They are, I think, one of the best reels made. We replaced all of our gears annually, so everything that you fish on Mile High Fishing is always gonna be new. We also are very proud to be part of the Rapala pro staff. We use sufix line, sufix grade flora carbon leader on all those rods. We pride ourselves on using the best in the business. With our Douglas rods, our Abu Garcia reels, Sufix line, Rapala and Captain Ryan Jigs, we have the best in the business.
Families And Inexperienced Fishermen
Ted J: Sounds like you got it covered. Now, I’m just curious, how about people who have never fished before, have a limited experience, kids and that sort of thing, are they welcome on the boat?
Joby C: Always welcome. And I tell you what, this Tahoe fishing, as unique as it is, I tell a lot of people that I love to take out newbies because I don’t have any bad habits to break. I have a ton people who fish with me from the South, a ton of people who fish with me from the north east and mid west and all over the country and world to be honest with you. You know a lot of people from Texas and the south, they’re bass fishermen. So their first reaction is just rippins lips, they don’t get the concept of reeling op and not ripping those lips off those fish. New people coming out, they haven’t fished before, a couple of things, they’ve saved a lot for their whole lives so they’re gonna be real lucky coming out. And I love to have kids in my boat. There are a lot of kids who fish with me who have caught fish before but because of the nature of this lake trout, I usually break their big fish record everytime they come out with us.
Ted J: Awesome. That must put not only a smile on their face but a smile on your face.
Joby C: You bet, it does. It’s a lot of fun. It’s a lot of fun to take kids out and have them catch that first big freshwater fish they’ve caught alive and sometimes the biggest fish they’ll catch in their life.
Ted J: So true. You know I share this story quite often and it’s just about your profession and I can’t think of a more honorable profession than to take people out and help them build memories. Because when it does come to the end of life, a lot of people are not gonna be sitting on their death bed thinking about all the business deals they’ve done. Right? They’re gonna be thinking about that, you know, 17 pound Mackinaw they caught with Captain Joby, you know, back 20 years ago. And what you do for people is something that they carry on with them for a lifetime and I thank you for doing that.
Joby C: I love doing it Ted, you know. A lot of people think of fishing guides, they think that fishing is the primary aspect of being a fishing guide. Well fishing, just about anybody can do. A fishing guide is a people person. A fishing guide is somebody that enjoys people, enjoys fishing with people, enjoys showing people, enjoys telling people, enjoys listening to people and that’s really the biggest aspect of my job. It’s not just the fishing part, that’s the important part believe me people wanna catch fish but it’s the people that I take fishing, people from all over the world, every walk of life, all different things and you say, end of life situation. That’s a sad situation but I can tell you a colleague of mine and I were talking the other day about the number of people we fished with this year that had stage 4 cancer or terminally ill. They were coming out with their buddies, their families and their friends to spend the last few months of their lives doing something they truly enjoyed. And I love taking part of that or being a part of that. I can’t tell you how many family albums I’m in, how many people would invite me to their dinner tables because we just spent 5 or 6 hours fishing and how many customers I had over the course of the 22 years I’ve been fishing that have fished with me 40 times in those 22 years or twice a year or once a year or once every 5 years and you know I take great pride in that, Ted.
Ted J: They consider you one of their best friends
Joby C: you bet
Ted J: Absolutely. It’s very fulfilling on both sides of that coin.
Joby C: You bet.
Ted J: Well Joby, I wanna thank you so much for carving out part of your day for us today. It’s been a real pleasure to talk with you and I’m sure the listeners have gained a lot. How do people contact you Joby if they would like to book a trip?
Joby C: Well the best way to find our information is on our website which is fishtahoe.com. Fishtahoe.com tells you just about everything there is to know about Mile High fishing and our company. You can also reach us by phone at (530) 541-5312.
Ted J: Very good. Well Joby, once again thank you so much my friend. We wish you the best of 2019 season and hope that 2020 is your very best ever. And I’m sure people will remember this when they are heading to Tahoe to do something, maybe some of their other family activities and they’re going, “Gosh, I’m gonna get a hold of that Joby guy and have him to take me out.” Because that is something you don’t want to miss when you come to your part of the world.
Joby C: Fishonted podcast, the best in the business. Thank you very much Ted, you have a great one.
Ted J: Okay, thanks again Joby.