Bozeman Fly Fishing Guide Toby Swank

I founded Fins and Feathers of Bozeman in 2000 as a fly shop and Montana fishing guide service in 2000. I sold the retail business to my friends at Yellow Dog Fly Fishing in 2022 and now focus solely on the outfitting business which is Fins and Feathers Guide Service.

My wife and two sons are my fishing and traveling companions throughout Montana and around the world. Their endless support has been paramount in helping me adjust to the life I always dreamed of.

I am extremely excited about working with this amazing crew of Bozeman fly fishing guides as we enter our 24th season. Our experience, diverse selection of premier Montana trout fisheries, and a small team of experienced professionals enable us to consistently deliver a quality, personable Montana fly fishing experience.

About Toby

I grew up in Dallas and fished for largemouth, white bass, and Crappie throughout my early years. One of the early angling highlights in my life was fishing Lake Fork when it first opened in 1980 and 1981. It seems to me that I spent most of the 80's learning how to drive trucks and boats so that I could pursue fish and waterfowl in the least practical locations around Texas.

I sunk a few boats, crashed a truck or two, and learned just about every trick in the book on how to get a vehicle free of East Texas mud by the time I was 17.

I moved to Bozeman in 1992 to further my pursuits on the water and in the field thanks to the excuse of higher learning at Montana State University. I graduated with a degree in Fish and Wildlife Biology in 1995 and worked on various research projects across the western US until settling down in the late 90's. A brief stint in sales and as a master's student gave me the tools and confidence to pursue a lifelong dream of becoming a "professional angler."

I opened Fins and Feathers in late 2000 with one employee (Rick Weisend) based on the idea that anglers in Bozeman would embrace a new fly shop that focused on fly tying and fishing gear rather than gifts and clothing. The journey was anything but easy and way more rewarding than I could have ever imagined.

Along the way, Fins and Feathers grew into one of the premier fly shops in the USA and I was blessed with countless lifelong lessons and friendships forged in the angling life. Our dedication to authenticity was embraced by the Bozeman angling community and visiting anglers alike. The guide service has flourished since the early days and was even recognized in 2010 as the Orvis Endorsed Fly Fishing Outfitter of the Year.

My wife, two sons, three Golden Retrievers, and friends in the Montana angling community are the cornerstones of my life these days. Angling adventures continue to take me around the world, but there is no place like Bozeman when it comes to fly fishing in Montana!

My Guiding Today

I am now entering my 24th year of guiding Montana fly fishing trips! Most of my trips now are with customers that I have been fishing with for many seasons, but I do still take on new clients when the timing works out for everyone.

Our Missouri River fly fishing trips in the spring have always been a favorite of mine and are the best opportunity for new clients to connect with me from a guiding perspective. I am the primary guide on all of our Beaverhead, Big Hole, and Bighorn River fly fishing trips as well. Although I still guide quite a bit on the waters around Bozeman, these trips are typically limited to returning guests.

I am the lead web developer, social media manager, reservation specialist, content creator, photographer, marketing manager, and accountant for Fins and Feathers Guide Service. I am also the outfitter on record and sole owner of our Montana fly fishing guide service. My friends, family, and colleagues would be quick to point out that I am somewhat of a professional traveling angler these days as well!

Fly Fishing Industry Affiliations

As you can imagine from my experience as a retail store owner, I am quite familiar with fly fishing gear after 20-some-odd years of buying and selling millions of dollars worth of it over the years. The Bozeman fly shop represented every mid and major brand in fly fishing over the years. There are many, many great brands in fly fishing today that offer exceptional values and technology.

As a professional fly fishing guide, I am proud to be affiliated with some of the finest manufacturers in fly fishing today. Currently, I am a Sage Elite Pro, Hatch Reels Pro, and an early member of the Skwala Fly Fishing pro-staff. I have a room full of fly fishing gear that I have collected and continue to fish with over the years, but these brands (and Patagonia wading boots) have stood the test of time and durability.

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