R Y A N   W A L K E R

    Founder - Ozarks Smallmouth Alliance
    Owner - Ozarks Smallmouth FlyCo

    I began my guiding career in 1996, guiding FlyFishermen on our Ozarks Tailwaters for trout.    In 1997 I began spending summers on Kodiak Island in Alaska guiding salmon and steelhead trips.
    During these early years, Smallmouth were always the fish I wouldn’t guide for, choosing to keep them as my little secret.   My fascination with them began when I was 13, catching my first smallmouth on the Finley River in Southwest Missouri. From that day to this, I’ve spent an inordinate amount of time learning about these native fish.
In 2016, I founded Ozarks Smallmouth Alliance, a grassroots effort aimed at educating people about Smallmouth conservation.   That same year, I decided I’d “share” my favorite fish with clients and began focusing my guiding efforts on finding Smallmouth in rivers, year round, on the fly.   Ozarks Smallmouth FlyCo was born.    I’ve tied flies commercially for 10 years, with the last 6 spent developing patterns and techniques specifically geared towards Ozarks River Smallmouth. To date, I’ve developed a dozen patterns that are specific to our waters, modifying several other popular patterns to fit the forage base here.
A trip with me is all about education.    Learning new casts, presentations, understanding how and why smallmouth relate to certain structures and water types, and challenging long held belief about how to properly present a fly to an aggressive predatory fish.
    I fish and guide on a dozen creeks and rivers within a two hour radius of my home outside of Billings Missouri.    I pride myself on knowing which ones will be fishing the best at all times of the year and under all fishable water conditions.
    Much like my beloved smallies, I’m an Ozarks native and truly believe we live in one of the most beautiful, wild places in North America.  
    Like the saying goes - “Smallmouth do not live in ugly places” and my goal for every trip is to share my love for this region and our Bronze Warriors.  
    Free. The. Fighter!

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