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Our Guides

Our guides bring over 650 combined years of customer service in the fishing industry to the waters of Rainy Lake, Minnesota. They all share a high dedication to professionalism, skill, and consistency.

Jon Balaski

Greenhead Guide Service

I have been a licensed fishing guide on Rainy Lakesince the early age of eighteen.  Now, at twenty-nine I love the job more than ever.  Even as a young boy I wanted to be a fishing guide. Simply put, I love fishing.  Even more, I love guiding...

Billy Dougherty

Rainy Lake Houseboats

I was inducted to the Minnesota Fishing Hall of Fame as a Legendary angler on March 23, 2018. My fishing career began at the famous Kettle Falls Hotel in 1965, learning under my uncle Mike Williams. I guided full time there through 1975, then weekends and vacations through the fall...

John Gushulak

Gator Charters

I began guiding on Rainy lake in the mid-1960's out of Rainy Lake Lodge and later Island View Lodge. Those were the days of no electronics and I learned the lake using paper charts. I learned the fishing spots from veteran guides...

Bruce Jean

Rainy Lake Guiding

I was born and raised on Rainy Lake. A twenty-two year teacher turned principal, fishing is in my blood.  I’m a second generation guide, having begun fishing when I was five under the tutelage of my father, Ron Jean. For the last twenty-five years ...

Scott Jean

Rainy Lake Guiding

Born and raised in the borderland, I started fishing Rainy Lake in 1973.  I have been guiding periodically with the family business - Rainy Lake Guiding, since 1998.  As a fifth grade teacher for the last thirty-one years...

Jim Knapp (Retired)

Cap't Jim Guide Service

I spent my summers growing up on Rainy Lake a few miles from the Rainy Lake Houseboat base. I graduated from International Falls High School and went on to college where I played hockey for the University of MN-Duluth Bulldogs. I have...

Mike Lessard

Onedoggie's Guide Service

I started guiding in 1979.  I learned the ropes from my Father, Legendary Guide Butch Lessard.  In 2006, I had the honor of guiding Governor Tim Pawlenty.  I have been guiding my entire life except for the five years I served in the United States Coast Guard...

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Willie Lyon

My passion for fishing and the outdoors began on Namakan Lake, connected to the East end of Rainy Lake at Kettle Falls where my family has had a cabin for almost 25 years. I learned to drive a 9.9hp Johnson tiller at the age of 8 and was hooked ever since. I started working at the thunderbird lodge on Rainy Lake during the summers...

Ryan Schmidt

Border Country Outdoor Adventures

I grew up fishing on Rainy Lake and spending summers at my Grandparents cabin on the East end of Dry Weed Island. Ever since I was a young kid, I loved fishing, exploring, and being on Rainy Lake. I started working on Rainy Lake at the age of 14 as a dock boy for Rainy Lake Houseboats...

Tony Snyder

Voyage North Guide Service

I have been fishing the lakes of Voyageurs National Park since 1978.  My family bought a resort on Lake Kabetogama in 1984. In 1986, I started guiding part time and spent almost all of my free time on the lakes.  I served the citizens of MN as a Minnesota State Trooper ...

Norm Wood

Rainy Lake Fishing Adventures

Since the early age of nine and spending summers at our family cabin on Rainy Lake I have been captivated by fishing and water.  I fished nearly everything Rainy had to offer in those years until at the age of fourteen I caught my first musky.  Musky Fever took a strong...

Wood Woods

Woody's Fairly Reliable Guiding Service

Fourty-five years ago I had my very first guide trip with Senator Bob "The Old Trapper" Lessard aboard his boat "The Viking."  As the years passed I guided much with my legendary uncle Butch "Top Dog" Lessard and for all the resorts of which many are no longer in existence...

Tanner Wood

Rainy Lake Fishing Adventures

I grew up fishing on Rainy Lake at my family's cabin on the Canadian side of the lake. I started to learn the lake at 10 years old out of a 16 ft. boat with a 8hp motor. During the summers I have worked at Rainy Lake Houseboats since I was 16 years old as dock staff...

Sam Dougherty

Rainy Lake Angling

Growing up, my family would come up to Rainy Lake a couple of times each summer to visit our grandparents. By the age of 6 I was going fishing with my Dad and Grandpa - I've been hooked ever since! I grew up in Green Bay, WI, played JR. hockey....

Peter Franz

Yellow Cabin Guiding

My family owns a cabin on Rainy Lake and I have been spending my summers there since I was born. Saturday and Sundays were often spent fishing with my Dad. I have developed a passion for guiding and have been fortunate to have great mentors along the....

Richard Lunzer

Patriot Outdoors, LLC.

I have been fishing for over 50 years. My career in the military has enabled me to fish in many bodies of water. I am always learning and enjoying many styles of fishing. Even though I am on of the new guides.....

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Jason Ellman

Northern Water Excursions, LLC.

Being a Full-Time guide and U.S.C.G. approved instructor. I've been told that it's easy to see the passion I have for being on the water. Fishing. Tours. Hiking. and Shuttle Services in Voyaguers National Park.......

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