They Brought Coors


One of my favorite quotes is by Terry Hackett, a strong drinker and very consistent fly fisherman. Hackett once said, “Any fly fisher knows that you can’t always count on the fish to cooperate, but you can always count on a good beer when the day is done”.  You can read more about Hackett and his opinions on the best beer for fly fishing here. Hackett believes all fishing trips should start with a visit to the nearest gas station to buy as much beer as you can hold. However, it’s the kind of beer you grab that determines what type of fisherman you are.

The Owyhee River is composed of two diverse types of fishermen: the drifters and the waders. Drifters are fly fishers that use a drift boat to float the river, while a wader is a fisherman who stands in the water in their waders. While they both fly-fish, they are not the same breed of fisherman. Before you head out to fish you need to decide what type of fisherman you are. One is not better than the other, but they are very different.

Here are 7 questions that will answer what type of fisherman you are:

Coors light is the worst beer?


Do you drive a Toyota 4-Runner?


Do you have a Border Collie as a dog?


Do you have a beard or dreadlocks?


Do you have the latest edition of the Sim or Columbia PFG fishing shirt?


You have at least 3 bumper stickers?


Bud Light is shit. ( – just in case you want to know the answer to this question.



If you answered “NO”  4 or more times, you belong on a drift boat. If you answered “YES” 4 or more times, you belong in your waders. As you can see, the first and last questions are the most important. Once again, we go back to what my friend Terry Hackett believed: you can always count on a good beer.

You might be wondering, where did the divide come from? It’s a long story, but the drift boaters tend to follow the usual “Patagonia true river man style” which means beer is involved. Beer caused the biggest split between the two groups.


Early 90’s fishing was divided into the two groups of fishermen based on the beer they drank. In 1990, Coors Light polluted many major rivers by pouring toxins into them and killed thousands of fish. ( This pollution crisis mainly affected the “wader” population. Pollution kills mid-water swimming fish, fish that stay in the current and hide in fast-moving water. This made it nearly impossible for a “wader” to catch a fish until the pollution calmed down. Waders began to HATE people who drank Coors or Budlight for the fact that they were in a roundabout way killing the river. The drift boats can cast under the trees, so they were not affected by the pollution. Slowly, friendships began to die as the divide between supporters and non-supports of the awful Coors Light grew.  Even today on the Owyhee River, you can hear the talk of the “drift boat Coors” and the “wading crafts”. So, before you go out make sure you know the type of fisher you are.IMG_5383

So you don’t have to guess what one I am(;


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