Fishing Guides

When it comes to a fishing guide trip or charter boat fishing there are no guarantee that every trip will result in fish being caught.  However, our fishing guides have over 80 years of combined river guide and charter boat experience to help you get on and land salmon, steelhead, smallmouth bass and northern pike.

Captain Max Werkman

Man holding a steelhead he caught fishing in downtown Grand Rapids

Max is an owner at Werkman Outfitters.  He specializes in the coldwater species of Michigan; salmon, trout and steelhead.  He grew up in West Michigan and has basically been fishing since he could walk.  During the summer months he guides in Alaska for Naknek River Camp.

His home waters are the Grand River, the White River and from time to time the Muskegon River. He uses multiple techniques including fly fishing, center pin, and spinning gear to catch the migratory fish.  When he can’t fish he is either thinking about fishing or tying flies.  

No matter your skill level Max is very patient and a great teacher, particularly with fly fishing techniques.  He’s a member of the Michigan Charter Boat Association and you can follow him on Facebook  or Instagram

Captain Tom Werkman

Man holding a largemouth bass caugh on the Grand River

Tom is also an owner at Werkman Outfitters and uses both fly and spin, baitcasters and traditional tackle techniques for largemouth bass, smallmouth bass and northern pike. His home waters are primarily the Grand River and it’s bayous in Grand Haven and Sping Lake.

Tom lives in Grand Haven, Michigan and serves as an Ottawa County Parks Commissioner, on the board of The Ottawa County Parks Foundation and The Grand River Greenway. In addtion, is also a member of the Michigan Charter Boat Association.  You can follow Tom on Instagram or Facebook

So if you are looking for something different to put a bend in your rod other than a trout during the summer months, let it be known that these native fish will not disappoint. 

Phil Cusey

Man in a boat

Phil is a veteran guide of 25 years. He spends his time guiding on the Muskegon, Kalamazoo and Grand rivers in western Michigan. Depending on the season, Phil chases trout, salmon, steelhead, smallmouth bass and northern pike.

He is the past president of the West Michigan chapter of Trout Unlimited and the Michigan River Guides Association and enjoys introducing first timers to the sport of fly fishing.  Phil lives in East Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Captain Jim Swanzey

Michigan Charter Boat Association

Jim has been a charter boat captain since 1995 and has been fishing Lake Michigan for 35 years.  He is member of the Michigan Charter Boat Association and has placed in multiple Big Lake fishing tournaments over this time.

His home port is Yacht Basin in Holland, Michigan where he owns and operates JJ, a 34 foot Pursuit that is fully equipped for the ultimate fishing experience.  He pursues salmon, steelhead and lake trout from April to September.