Whether it’s guiding for salmon on the Årøy in Norway or putting clients into fish on the flats of the Seychelles, after 16 years in the game Scot de Bruyn (@cartel_flyfishing) has seen it all. We caught up with him in issue 26 for a rapid-fire High 5s.

Scot de Bruyn with a Seychelles bonefish

Scot de Bruyn with a Seychelles bonefish

5 best things about where you guide?

  1. Undoubtedly the food at our Årøy River lodge in Norway is the best by far. Thanks Knut!
  2. The clients I have met on location who have become good friends.
  3. My guide teams in the Seychelles from both FlyCastaway and Alphonse Fishing Co. You know who you are.
  4. The knowledge I have acquired over the past 16 years at different destinations (you can’t buy that online).
  5. And lastly, the amazing scenery I get to take for granted on a daily basis.
Scot de Bruyn on the Delger river in Mongolia

Scot on the Delger river in Mongolia

5 fishing-connected items you don’t leave home without before making a mission?

  1. Top of the list would be my Costa sunnies. I can’t work without a great pair of polarised shades.
  2. My @axisgo X housing for my iPhone. Amazing for underwater images.
  3. Blue Steel Sports Anti-chafe Cream. Life saver!
  4. Bovril spread for those early morning breakfasts.
  5. And, as always, a good old bottle of Havana Club.
Scot de Bruyn with a client and Atlantic salmon on the Aaroy river

Scot de Bruyn with a client and Atlantic salmon on the Aaroy river

5 bands to listen to while on a road trip?

  1. The Black keys
  2. ODESZA
  3. Kygo
  4. Hippie Sabotage
  5. PNAU

5 things you are loving right now

  1. Spending time at home with my wife, Sherrilee, and son, Reef.
  2. Not getting sunburnt on the flats.
  3. Watching the Monster Energy Supercross season kicking off.
  4. Generous clients who have helped my family financially during Covid. Thank you guys.  We will forever be in your debt.
  5. My forever youthful looks, as my wife should have left me by now after the shit show of a year I have had.

5 indispensable flies for saltwater?

  1. Wayne Hasselau’s Pillow talk.
  2. James Christmas/Alec Gerbec’s original Flexo Crab.
  3. Sempers, great for geets/poons and my pocket.
  4. Alec Gerbec’s WMD triggerfish fly.
  5. My secret weapon – The OJ Simpson (convict surgeon pattern for GTs).
Taimen on the Delger river in Mongolia

Taimen on the Delger river in Mongolia

5 favourite fly fishing destinations globally?

  1. Cosmoledo in Seychelles.
  2. The Delger River in Mongolia.
  3. St Brandons off Mauritius.
  4. The Alta River in Northern Norway.
  5. Gabon for tarpon (holy F#$%).

5 of the most difficult guiding/teaching experiences so far?

  1. Having only half a day’s orientation on Farquhar Atoll and guiding guests the next day.
  2. Trying to learn The Årøy River in three days by myself, and guiding guests having never caught an Atlantic salmon myself.
  3. Came close to losing a leg thanks to a coral infection in 2014.
  4. Risking my job by almost punching a baron from Belgium over a dispute to stop killing the fish I’m trying to protect. Luckily my boss has my back!
  5. Never partake in fines meetings when orchestrated by a safari lodge owner. I nearly drowned in my own puke.

5 of the best things you have picked up from guiding?

  1. How to deal with dickheads and Karens.
  2. Being in a daily routine.
  3. As a guide it seems I have acquired the ability to make quick decisions when it counts.
  4. Having the patience to help people when I don’t feel up to it.
  5. A tolerance for alcohol. All you need is a NDE (Near Death Experience) and one more season to perfect your Buffalo game (drinking with your left hand only).

5 of the worst things you have picked up from guiding?

  1. A VD… No wait, my wife might read this. Just kidding babe.
  2. A tendency to smoke more when I’m stressed.
  3. Not realising that the normal world continues and I should stay in contact with people more often. It was slightly more difficult ten years ago without WIFI.
  4. The habit of wearing flip flops when I’m in the shower just in case someone has jizzed on the floor.
  5. Thinking that we are still in school and calling the clients by their newly acquired nick names.

Grab the rest of Scot’s High 5s in issue 26 of The Mission below. As always, it’s free.