Lucas Bissett joins us today to discuss the AFFTA Confluence 2023 event and the changes it brings this year. Among the highlights is the introduction of real-time census data, that provides a more accurate snapshot of the industry’s growth.

We also explore Lucas’s personal journey in fly fishing. Did we mention that he was an Orvis-Endorsed Guide in 2017? If you’re aspiring to be a fishing guide, get tips from the expert himself on what it takes to excel in the field.

Show Notes with Lucas Bissett on AFFTA Confluence 2023. Hit play below! 👇🏻



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(Read the Full Transcript at the bottom of this Blog Post)


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AFFTA Confluence

Episode Chapters with Lucas Bissett on AFFTA Confluence 2023

2:05 – Lucas discovered fly fishing later in life when his family relocated to Missouri around age 10. At the age of 12, he received a basic fly fishing kit from his grandmother and started catching panfish and bass with it.

02:55 – Following a break during his college years, Lucas reignited his love for fishing at the age of 24 when he successfully landed his first redfish on a fly. He eventually pursued a career as a guide and spent 11 years guiding people red fishing from the back of a skiff.

04:30 – Lucas was an Orvis-endorsed guide for eight years and even got the title of Orvis-endorsed guide for 2017.

AFFTA Confluence

07:55 – We discuss the importance of positive reviews as a guide, and Lucas shares insights on navigating and addressing less favorable feedback.

American Fly Fishing Trade Association

12:00 – AFFTA is the sole trade association in fly fishing. Their main goal is to try to guide the sustainable growth of the fly fishing industry.

12:55 – For Lucas, it’s crucial that individuals feel their trade association is actively advocating for their interests. This involves organizing events that unite industry players in a business-oriented setting.


13:30 – They’ve done the International Fly Tackle Dealer Show in the past, but that has changed to Confluence this year. The Confluence is a very similar show, but they have made pretty dramatic changes, according to Lucas.

14:10 –  Lucas shares that AFFTA has partnered with TrackFly, a data collection company, to obtain more precise and real-time census data.

This system integrates with retailers’ Point of Sale (POS) systems and then gathers and compiles the information, which AFFTA will use to generate a biannual report.

AFFTA Confluence

31:40 – Lucas provides insights into his perspective on the current state of the fly fishing industry.

39:36 – Lucas shares information about the AFFTA Fisheries Fund.

AFFTA Confluence 2023

45:34 – Lucas enjoys fishing and tries to do it whenever he can. His job at AFFTA lets him travel across the country, so he takes the opportunity to fish in different places.

47:00 – Lucas offers advice for those interested in becoming fishing guides and shares what it takes to pursue a career in guiding.


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WFS 098 – Tom Sadler on AFFTA and IFTD – Mossy Creek Fly Fishing, Brook Trout, Shenandoah Valley

Read the Full Podcast Transcript Below



Conclusion with Lucas Bissett on AFFTA Confluence 2023

Lucas Bissett’s insights into the AFFTA Confluence 2023 reveal exciting changes, including the introduction of real-time census data. It offers a more accurate glimpse into the industry’s growth.

His personal journey in fly fishing and experience as an Orvis-Endorsed Guide in 2017 provide valuable perspectives for aspiring fishing guides.