Laural Highlands Licensed Guides
Laurel Highlands Guide Services is Licensed with DCNR Ohiopyle State Park.
We’ve handpicked our guide staff over the past 19 years. You won’t find any green rookies on our core staff. They are professional, courteous, knowledgeable, and above all eager to teach others.
Rob has been guiding fly fishing trips on the Yough River since 2007. He has a degree in Wildlife Biology & a minor in Entomology from the University of Delaware. Growing up in Delaware, Rob honed his fly fishing prowess on local trout streams and stripers in the surf. In 2005, Rob moved to Pittsburgh and traded in the salt life for the mountain life of Western PA.
Since his move he now spends his time targeting freshwater species from trout to muskie with the fly rod. He loves to explore the world in pursuit of the next big catch, from the challenging permit flats of Belize to the Pacific Northwest swinging flies for wild steelhead with a two-handed rod. Rob is also the former Executive Director of Three Rivers Waterkeeper in Pittsburgh, PA a nonprofit organization that protects the water quality of the Three Rivers.
After catching his first smallmouth bass (from the Yough, no less) at a young age, Mike realized that he enjoyed fishing a little more than the average person.
While he spent his younger years gaining an understanding of conventional fishing, Mike’s obsession really kicked into high gear when he picked up his first fly rod. Since that fateful day nearly 15 years ago, Mike has developed an intimate understanding of the wide range of fishing options that southwest PA offers to the fly angler, and spent a considerable amount of time passing his knowledge on to other anglers through guiding and teaching classes for local clubs.
Mike has a degree in Fisheries Biology and is an obsessive fly tyer. During a day on the water he can not only teach you what the fish are eating, but why they are eating it, and how to best imitate it. He loves all kinds of fishing, but warmwater fishing for smallmouth bass, carp, and musky out of his drift boat is his favorite way to spend a day on the water.
Mike is certified to administer first aid and CPR, and is a licensed PA guide.
Casey was born and raised in Pittsburgh Pa. At a young age, he took to fishing and around age 13 picked up a fly rod for the first time. So began a life of chasing trout and anything else that swims. Fishing is an escape for many people, for Casey it is a way of life. He is passionate about the outdoors and enjoys sharing the experience with his clients. He has guided across the state of Pennsylvania for Smallmouth bass, trout and steelhead. Any day on the water with Casey is an opportunity to learn new techniques and enjoy time in the outdoors.
Casey is a Licensed PA guide and is CPR and First Aid certified
Dave Shawley is a local, born and raised in the Laurel Highlands. Even as a boy, he was an avid fisherman, and he has spent much of his life studying the nuances of this area’s trout fisheries. For the past few years, he has, with great success, been putting his lifetime of local knowledge to use guiding clients for LHGS.
It would take more room than we have here to list Dave’s skills as a fly fisherman or describe his knowledge of trout and what they eat. Suffice it to say that he is expert in all of the areas in which a trout guide should be, and his clients are lucky to share to a day on the water with him.
Jim spent his college days skipping classes and fishing the water in front of his cabin on Spring Creek. Luckily, all of the knowledge garnered during his time at school translated well to the Yough River his home water.
Like any good fly fisherman, Jim tries to learn from his time on the water, and the time he’s spent chasing trout on the tail waters of the west taught him that, to best fish the Yough, he needed a driftboat. That lesson was the beginning of what became LHGS. He bought a driftboat and has been guiding anglers on the river ever since.
Jim is a licensed PA guide, is certified in CPR for the Professional Rescuer, and is also a licensed instructor in River Rescue by the PA Fish & Boat Commission.
Bottom line, you’re in good hands.
Ernest Pribanic has been a trout bum for most of his life and a professional one for about eleven years.
When he’s not fishing his home river, the Yough, he’s likely chasing trout in the American West or striped bass, bluefish, and false albacore in the Northeast.
Among his flyfishing accomplishments are first place finishes in saltwater flyfishing tournaments and a second place finish in the Outdoor Life Network’s Fly Fishing Masters Northeast qualifying tournament. Using his years of accumulated knowledge he will work hard to get you into fish and make sure you have an enjoyable day on the river.
Over the years Ernest has taught many flyfishing schools for area flyshops and is an experienced casting instructor. He is certified to administer CPR, and is a licensed PA guide.
Jarret grew up in the Pittsburgh area learning to fish for largemouth bass and panfish. After learning how to fly fish, Jarret spent many years chasing trout and steelhead. For the past number of years, Jarret tapped into his bait dunking years and started fly fishing for bass, carp and various other warmwater species.
He enjoys all types of fishing styles and can assist you in fishing for any species you wish to pursue. Basically, he likes throwing midges to rising trout and streamers for smallmouth bass. However, his real love is fishing for smallmouth bass. What could be better than fishing in shorts and a t-shirt, catching aggressive, high jumping fish that fight like an angry bull-dog and eat poppers and surface flies? Nothing at all.
Additionally, Jarret believes that a day on the water with him includes working on and fine tuning fly-casting skills and fly fishing mechanics. That way, you will have a good day fishing and become a better angler as well.