Matt O'Connor | Fly Fishing Guide | Silver Creek Outfitters

Certified Casting Instructor

on leading people to the fish

"All the best days on the river end in the dark."

Wherever the trout are,

it’s beautiful.

“There isn’t anywhere that I have found yet that is better than here, so it was an easy decision to come back.”  Matt’s grandfather grew up in Picabo on Silver Creek, so fishing in Idaho is really in Matt’s blood.  He didn’t cast his first line in Silver Creek, though, but rather in the North Fork of the Big Lost where the six-year-old caught his first trout on a snazzy Spider Man spin rod. Sharing what makes his hometown so amazing makes Matt happy and his favorite guide trip to date was taking a group of disabled veterans rafting down the Salmon River. “It was the most fulfilling trip I have ever had because none of them had ever been rafting before and many of them had not been able to do something like that for a long time. I feel very lucky to have given them the opportunity to experience something they otherwise wouldn’t do,” he explained.

Guiding Style

Teacher. “Obviously, I love catching fish but for me, the process of figuring out how to catch a fish and understanding a river better is what I really love. I think that fly fishing is the best way to learn and understand how the river ecosystem works just like how kayaking or rafting is the best way to understand how the water in a river moves. I have found that teaching someone about the place they are in or the ecosystem they are interacting with is the most fulfilling part of being a guide. I also find that teaching new techniques whether that is kayaking, ski racing, or now fly fishing is a fun process and it is awesome to see people progress.”

Fun Facts about Matt

  • Matt is more scared of beavers than he is of bears.
  • After a day on the river, Matt’s preferred way to wind down is “to watch all of the wildlife as the sun is going down because all of the best days on the
    river end in the dark.”
  • Matt ties his own flies and definitely has some preferences. “My favorite fly is the last chance cripple because I think it is beautiful, fun to tie and works really well for all the mayfly hatches I have tried it on. My favorite hatch is salmon flies because they hatch on some of my favorite rivers, and they are cool looking bugs. Plus, early summer is my favorite time of year.”
  • In the summer, when he’s not fishing, Matt can be found whitewater kayaking. He is a little obsessed about it. In the winter he tries to ski as many days as he can. Matt also spends a lot of time tying flies and loves photography.
What folks say about fishing with Matt

I've fished a lot of locations with countless number of guides over the last 35 plus years, but of all the days on the water, Matt, Brian, Randy, and Ewald rank near the top of the list.
Their knowledge of the fishery, waters, entomology, area history enhanced the scenery and each day’s experience. They are patient coaches who helped me to become a better fly fisherman in multiple areas
Although I expressed my gratitude to each, I wanted you to know that you have an exceptional crew, which I'd gladly recommend without hesitation. I look forward to my next trip to Idaho and working with you and your crew to create another tailored fishing trip.

Andrew Hay