Capt. Eugene Shuler
Eugene Shuler is a third generation guide, a Smoky Mountain native and the Lead Guide of Fly Fishing the Smokies. He was inducted into the Southern Trout Legends of the Fly Hall of Fame in February of 2019, making him the youngest person ever to be inducted. Eugene is a licensed Captain by the United States Coast Guard, holds a degree in Outdoor Leadership, and a Certified Fly Fishing Instructor from the Wulff School of Fly Fishing in New York and a graduate of Hubbard’s Guide Academy in Montana. He is also Wilderness First Aid and CPR certified. Eugene is widely recognized as the leading expert on Smoky Mountain fly fishing and regional tailwaters. Eugene was the Founder and President of the Board of Directors of the North Carolina Fly Fishing Team which is the winningest fly fishing team in North America. He is a current and active member of the International Game Fish Association, Federation of Fly Fishers, American Casting Association, Captains for Clean Water and Trout Unlimited.
In 23 years of guiding Eugene has built an impressive resume and fished with some of the world’s best anglers and guided celebrities and dignitaries from around the globe. He has more guided trips under is belt than any other guide in the region. Logging more the 340 guide days per year on the water, most of them with repeat guests.
Eugene has competed in countless fly fishing competitions all over the US. He has won many events, and set a couple state records in the process. He currently holds the NC State Record for Distance Fly Cast. Eugene won the Eastern Regional of the Field and Stream Magazine Total Outdoorsman Challenge. He has competed and placed in the top of numerous Team USA Fly Fishing National Championships, and Team USA Regional Qualifiers. Eugene placed 2nd in the OLN Fly Fishing Masters, and was the Pisgah Flymasters Champion. He also placed 2nd overall at the America Cup International Fly Fishing competition in Colorado, and placed 4th in the world at the Musky Fly Fishing World Championships.
Eugene has appeared on numerous television shows on the following networks, ESPN, HGTV, OLN, Versus, The Sportsman Channel, Outdoor Channel, Fox Sports South, Heartland Network, UPN Networks. He has also been in many publications including American Angler, Fly Rod and Reel Magazine, Success Magazine, Fly Rod Journal, Field and Stream, Fly Fisherman Magazine, Kayak Angler, Southern Trout Magazine, North Carolina Sportsman Magazine, Smoky Mountain News, Smoky’s Travel Host, Montgomery Style, and numerous local and regional newspapers.
Capt. Jefferson (Jay) Cobb
Jefferson (Jay) Cobb’s love of fly fishing began at the age of seven when he begged his parents for his first fly rod. Growing up in Vail, Colorado he was just a few hundred yards from one of the best trout rivers in the state. He lived on the river, spending all of his free time out exploring the waters. His passion for fishing landed him his very first job in a Fly shop, where he spent his summers tying flies and teaching casting demos.
Fishing wasn’t Jay’s only passion. He graduated from Johnson and Wales Culinary School, and went on to become a sous chef in many fine dining restaurants. After working in the restaurant industry for several years, he realized his ultimate passion was fly fishing. He attended Sweetwater Guide School and began his career in the fishing industry.
Jay has fished all around the world from Cutthroat trout in Jackson Hole Wyoming, to Bonefish in the Bahamas, to Peacock Bass in the Amazon. He competed in Bass tournaments all over the southeast consistently leading the pack. During his career in tournament bass fishing, Jay realized that his goal was to become a guide. Nothing makes him happier than helping put people on big fish and making memories that last a lifetime.
Jared has rocketed into one of the most requested guides on our staff. Jared was born in Gastonia, North Carolina but spent much of his childhood fishing the rivers and lakes of Northeast Tennessee. He credits his Grandfather and Uncle for laying the foundation needed to become the successful angler he is today. Fishing is a family occupation as his Uncle owns and operates a fishing and boating outfitter in the hills of Tennessee which is how Jared’s love for the art of fly fishing and trout came at a very young age while fishing the banks of the infamous South Holston River.
He is graduate of Western Carolina University with a BA in Criminal Justice. Jared spends more time fishing local streams in a month then many people spend fishing in a lifetime. While being mentored by Fly Fishing the Smokies very own head guide Eugene Shuler, Jared has the experience to provide you with an excellent fly fishing adventure. Being patient, fun and the true southern gentleman that he is, a day on the water with Jared will be a memory that lasts a lifetime!
Chris Lee was raised on the fabled trout waters of Deep Creek in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Chris has been avid fly angler his entire life. His passion for the sport led to competitive angling, where in 2004 Chris along with teammate Eugene Shuler reached the semifinals of the Fly Fishing Masters Tournament. From there it was just a matter of time before he started surging to the top of the leader boards in the sport.
Today, Chris is a recognized as a seasoned veteran on the competition circuit and has competed in multiple National Fly Fishing Championships. In 2011, Chris earned his spot on Fly Fishing Team USA and represented the US at several national and international events. In the spring of 2012, Chris became an assistant coach for Fly Fishing Team USA Youth, and lead team to a silver medal performance in France in 2012 and a Gold Medal in Ireland in 2013. Chris has an incredible personality, his never ending smile and easy going nature make him the perfect guide and instructor.
Capt. Jacob Tallent
Jacob is one of our veteran guides and is recognized as a backcountry specialist, given his extensive experience fishing and backpacking in some of the most remote locations in the Appalachians. The adventurous have the option of booking overnight fishing expeditions in the Smokies and surrounding areas with Jacob for an experience of a lifetime!
Jacob was born and raised in the quiet mountain town of Franklin, NC located in the Nantahala National Forest and has been an avid fisherman all his life. He spent his childhood learning the waters of Western North Carolina and Eastern Tennessee and credits his grandfather for his passion and advanced knowledge of the sport.
Jacob is a recent graduate of Western Carolina University with a Bachelor’s in Natural Resource Conservation and Management and has spent the past several years working in the outdoor industry. When he’s not wrangling in some of the finest fish in the Appalachians, you can find him hiking the trails of the Great Smoky Mountains, or flying high in the skies as a pilot.
Jacob is enthusiastic, patient, supportive, eager, and possesses excellent communication and teaching skills that will leave you with a valuable skill set and a very memorable experience while angling with him in the Smokies!
Whether you are just beginning to explore the world of fly fishing, looking for something to do as a family, or you’re an experienced fisherman, Zach is the perfect guide for you. Growing up in the Northeast Georgia mountains of Dahlonega, Zach has always had a love of the great outdoors, especially hunting and fishing. When Zach was fifteen, he branched out into the world of fly fishing. In recent years, he has had the opportunity to fly fish in Yellowstone National Park, Madison River, and Yellowstone River in Montana. Zach is also a family man. He has been married to his wife, Laura Beth, for 10 years, and they have two small children, Kaitlyn and Carter. He makes his living as a full-time Firefighter/EMT and has done so for the past thirteen years. Zach’s schedule as a firefighter allows him to spend a lot of time doing what he loves, fishing the rivers of Western North Carolina and the Great Smoky Mountain National Park. He really enjoys chasing wild trout on small streams. Zach’s patience, outgoing personality, and passion for teaching others about fly fishing make him a great guide for anyone curious about the sport.
Josh is an enrolled member of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. He grew up in west Tennessee fishing for bass on the lakes and rivers that flow into the Mississippi River drainage. He tore up the local bass fishing tournament scene before moving back to the mountains of his roots in Cherokee North Carolina. Josh’s insatiable appetite for fishing and learning brought him to the sport of fly fishing where he has excelled. Speaking of appetites, Josh graduated the Florida Culinary Arts Institute where he became a genius around the kitchens of south Florida and western North Carolina.
Josh has a family with two young children. He is actively involved in church and volunteers his time with the youth group. A day with Josh will be fun filled with Cherokee folklore and plenty of learning. Josh’s soft spoken gentle nature makes him fantastic with kids, and teaching those new to fly fishing.
Tisa was born and raised in a military family traveling around the world. She started fishing as a child with a Mickey Mouse spin rod. One day on a quiet river in Fairbanks, Alaska her father’s friend placed a fly rod into her hands for the first time, and she hasn’t been far from a river since.
She has had the opportunity to fish in some of the coolest places; from the Bighorn River in Montana during the winter when the fly line froze between casts; to the Kenai and Brooks River in Alaska being pushed around by grizzly bears; to various lakes and streams in Utah, Arizona and now in North Carolina on the Tuckasegee River and Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Tisa has spent most of her time fishing the waters in Alaska where her joy for guiding has taken hold.
She went to college in Arizona where she graduated with an Associate’s Degree in Art and Photography. A fly rod, some newly tied flies, and a camera around her neck, she lives for the adventure. If she’s not on the water fishing, she’s climbing, kayaking, painting or taking photos. You name the adventure and she’s doing it.
Tisa’s patience, bubbly personality, and passion for the sport make her an all-around amazing guide to take you out on the water.
Bradley Adams is a native of Bryson City, NC and has been fishing the streams of the Smokies since the age of 6. A graduate of Western Carolina University, Bradley has been a raft guide, a landscaper, and for the last decade a professional musician with nationally touring act The Freight Hoppers, recording an album that made its way to a Grammy Nomination Ballot for Best Traditional Folk Album of 2010. Bradley now has a wife and two children who help manage the family’s small farm where they raise chickens, pigs, and an assortment of fruits and vegetables. An avid Hunter and Fisherman, Bradley brings a true passion for the Outdoors and for sharing his experiences with others.
Micah is one of our youngest yet most eager and enthusiastic guides on our staff. He grew up in a small town in central Arkansas, just minutes away from some of the most premier trout waters the country has to offer. He received his first fly rod from his Grandfather and fell in love with the sport high up in the White Cloud Mountains in Idaho. He has experience fishing all different types of waters from the smallmouth bass streams in the Ozarks to large Rocky Mountain rivers. He studied at Arkansas Tech University and later attended Sweetwater Fly Fishing Guide School in Fort Smith Montana. Micah is a great teacher for anyone from the novice angler to the seasoned fly fisherman.
Zac is our transplant from Nevada. He grew up flinging dries to wild fish in the high alpine streams and lakes of the Sierra Nevada Range. In high school Zac was a camp counselor for a before and after-school kids program and works great with kids on the water. His patience and positivity make a great day for a family to spend a day learning how to fly fish.
He is a mainly self-taught fly fisherman so he understands how to get over the common mistakes in fly fishing. His background in the mountains of Nevada and California has transferred here to be highly effective in both the National Park and in Its surrounding waters. Zac also attended Sweetwater Guide School and exceeded expectations. Zac’s knowledge of fish and patience combine to create a trip for the books
Jason is a born and raised Arkansan whose love for the outdoors spawns from a childhood of hunting and fishing with his father and grandfathers. He has never settled for anything other than his best whether it be running record mile times, chasing public land bucks, or giving you the best day on the water possible. He learned on his own how to fly fish in the streams of the Ozark and Ouachita mountains of Arkansas for anything that swims and has since chased fish all over the country on the fly. From the smallmouth and trout rivers of Arkansas to the legendary trout waters of Montana and Wyoming and the epic smallmouth rivers of the north, Jason can find fish practically anywhere and is not afraid to put in the effort to do so. Jason also currently attends Arkansas State University and is a graduate of Hubbard’s Fly Fishing Guide Academy in Montana. If you find yourself on the water with this patient and hard working guide, look forward to an epic time on the water whether you are a first time fly fisher or an experienced angler.