Abbie Schuster

Years Fishing?

20+.  I am not sure when exactly I learned how to fish, I have been fishing as far back as my memory goes.

Who introduced you to fly fishing?

My father. I feel very fortunate to have him as a fishing buddy! 

Can you tell us a little about your home waters and the fish you pursue there?

My home waters are Martha's Vineyard we are pursuing stripers, bluefish, albies, and bonito.
In the winter months, I guide freshwater rivers in Maine, Western Mass, and Connecticut for trout and pike.
When I am guiding salt, I always think salt is my favorite fishery, but in the winter I am saying I like fresh better. So I guess I am lucky enough to love them both!

What's the height of the season for you? What time of year is your personal favorite?

The height of the season is May - October.   My favorite time is September when the awaited Bonito and False Albacore arrive on Martha's Vineyard! It's sunny, crisp and the fish are active, nothing beats it. 

What are your favorite travel destinations? What's on the bucket list?

What are your favorite travel destinations? What's on the bucket list?
Andros Island, Bahamas. It's warm, wide-open and wild. When fishing the west side you can go days without seeing another human. The huge bonefish are also a plus! Heaven!
Also, Montana, where I went to school and began my guiding career.
My bucket list is quite long...but the top couple places are Christmas Island and Seychelles.

What's your current go-to fly?

White or green deceivers on Martha's Vineyard is what I use most of the season.  When down on the West side of Andros my big, hand tied Gotchas never fail. 

Other than fly tackle, what piece of gear do you find indispensable?

My net because I try and keep the fish we catch in the water as much as possible and limit handling them.  I like to teach this practice to my clients in hopes they will form good fish handling habits and pass along that knowledge. 

My favorite thing about guiding is:

Oh man, so many things! I love that my office is the outdoors.   I love working with people, bringing them into nature and putting them on fish.  One of the most beautiful aspects of fly-fishing is that there is always more to learn. My goal of every trip is for the client to learn something new. Fly fishing is my passion and I feel so grateful that I can share this gift with my clients. 

From the angler’s point of view, what do you see as the main value of going on a guided trip?

The knowledge you will gain from a professionals point of view.

What's your ideal lunch? What do you actually pack?

Depends on the season....fall/winter a big thermos of steamy, hot chili. With jalapenos and cheese on top and a nice sip of bourbon! seabass ceviche with avocado. Chocolate all seasons...
What my lunch actually looks like is lots of granola bars, fruit, nuts, things I can eat quickly so we don't have to stop fishing! If I am feeding clients though I always try and make it special. Cookies or brownies are a must!

What fly fishing blogs/magazines do you read regularly?

Flyfish Journal, Eastern Fly Fishing and The Drake always has entertaining articles.  

When I'm not fishing you'll find me:

When I am not fishing I am adventuring with my pup, Rupert. I love backcountry skiing and Rupert runs right next to me the whole time!

I can also be found working on my photography, organizing women's events and future travel trips. 

  • Abbie and her young client hooked into this Martha's Vineyard striper.
  • Abbie Schuster Thomas & Thomas ambassador lands a MA pike.
  • T&T ambassador Abbie Schuster with a Martha's Vineyard blue fish.