It is not often that a position opens up for a new steelhead guide, however when it does it is important to bring them along as quick as possible. Each steelhead river has its own personality and the most important thing to learn is where and when the steelhead like to lie. A big mistake many guides make when training new additions is taking them from run to run having them memorize where they are. If you are a guide that goes from point A to point B everyday you will quickly see you are being out worked on the river by better anglers who follow the fish.
Teaching the ability to spot water allows a guide to see the trends of where fish are holding. These trends can last for a couple days or even a couple weeks. Once you catch on to the trend in water that the steelhead are searching for, you begin to search out that type of water all day. This is much more productive than to just keep fishing a run every day until they show up.
When we train guides we focus on reading water. Learning how to look for features that are attracting the fish on any given day will give you all the advantages to catch fish when no one else can. Memorizing runs is useless in my opinion. Looking at water and understanding why steelhead are attracted to the spot is of far greater importance for a new guide. After several days of understanding how to read water on our specific river I like to let the guide fish on there own, exploring and experimenting. After a couple days of fishing it is finally time to point out the runs that are most productive.