Kate Watson is a fly fishing guide in northern British Columbia. She’s gregarious in nature, a fish bum on the river, and holds a passion for conservation, wildlife stewardship, writing, fly tying and seeking new adventures on the water. She recently moved to the Cariboo region, a grassland plateau rich in pioneering, cowboying history and productive still water fisheries. Kate grew up in the hunting industry, which inevitably made her fall in love with wild places and wild beings. She was introduced to the politics of wildlife management at a young age, and sat in on meetings surrounding wildlife sustainability, and developed a sense of proactive activism in our hunting and angling community. She tabled a chapter for Backcountry Hunters and Anglers in her region in 2020 to strengthen our province's vision for backcountry conservation. Kate was introduced to two-handed rods and became enamoured in the rugged romanticism within the north west steelhead culture. She eventually took to long lines and classic flies, blending traditional and contemporary techniques. She has competed three times at the world level for Spey casting and is excited to compete again next year. She currently holds 5th place at a world standing.
Wilderness is a necessity... They will see what I meant in time. There must be places for human beings to satisfy their souls. Food and drink is not all. There is the spiritual. In some it is only a germ, of course, but the germ will grow.
- JOHN MUIR
Her passion for fly fishing has allowed her to build a repertoire as an industry professional, offering casting schools, fly tying schools and presenting at casting and angling events across Western North America . Kate is a professional fly tyer for Lagartun, Partridge and Fair Flies, tying almost exclusively Classic Atlantic Salmon flies and Speys for west coast steelhead. With excitement, Kate has joined Interior Fly Fishing Co. as a travel director, hosting fly fishing destination trips around the globe and is a proud ambassador for Hardy, Renzetti, Sawyer Oars, Lagartun Premium Tying Materials, Partridge of Redditch Hooks, Bruce and Walker Rods, Fair Flies and various other pro-staff teams. She has been very fortunate to have appeared in a variety of fly fishing magazines, such as Fly Fusion, Steelheaders Journal, Swing the Fly, Fly Lords and Outside Magazine; as well as films for Fishing BC and is a co host for Sport Fishing on the Fly featured on the World Fishing Network.
I do not believe that any man can adequately appreciate the world of to-day unless he has some knowledge of -- a little more than a slight knowledge, some feeling for and of -- the history of the world of the past.
Kate works diligently with biologists, aquatic ecologists and various scientists on related fish studies, writing pieces and using action-based conservation movements in order to spread education about our current fisheries and natural resources. She is a proud regional representative for United Women on the Fly, promoting women in the sport and tailors workshops or schools specifically for women.
In 2018 Kate started a fly fishing retreat called Fly Girl's Rendezvous, which incorporated learning, fishing, edifying and giving women a place to take time for themselves, ask questions and relax. In 2020 she released her online learning platform for fly tying called Spey School where tyers from around the world are brought together to learn the craft of Spey.