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A personal guide service and fly-fishing schools based in the Driftless area in Southwest Wisconsin by Erik Helm

Bringing fly-fishing, nature, and inspiration together on the stream. Learn as you fish with Classical Angler and experience fly fishing at its best!


I've known Erik for years, and as cliche as this seems he is just a flat out "good guy."  I've personally witnessed him teach literally hundreds upon hundreds of people of all ages, abilities, and attention spans to cast a fly rod.  Anyone who can keep their temperment, humor, and remain a good instructor through that is, to be blunt, a better human than I am.  If you're looking for a guide with a good sense of humor, patience, who knows the water, and with an instructor's background, then Erik is your man. Henry Koltz T.U. board of trustees

"I've had the privilege of volunteering alongside Erik at numerous fly fishing and fly casting clinics.  He's

as comfortable talking to a life long fly angler as he is working with someone completely new to the sport. 

Erik has this unique ability to figure out where you're at on your fly fishing journey (beginner, intermediate,

or advanced) and then he's able to give you exactly what you need to know in order to take your skills to the

next level.  It's refreshing to see someone so knowledgeable about the intricacies of the sport of fly fishing

constantly reminding those around him that it's easy and it's fun.  I would highly recommend some time on

the water with Erik Helm.  You'll be a better fly angler afterwards"  - Mike Kuhr T.U state council Chairman

"I have known Erik Helm for nearly a decade and am very impressed by his passion for the sport of trout fishing.  I have helped him teach fly fishing classes for nearly that long and have always marveled at his patience, skill level and desire to help others enjoy our sport.  His knowledge of Wisconsin streams is superb and he combines that with a pleasant personality which makes a day on the water truly enjoyable.  Many fishermen are content to take something from the sport but Erik is committed to giving back far more than he takes and we all benefit from that commitment.  Whether you need advice on a specific fly pattern or casting in tight quarters you never leave an encounter with Erik without adding something new to your own bag of tricks."  Jim Wierzba T.U. State council

I met Erik several years ago on my travels to Milwaukee to the Orvis store. During my visits it was very easy to get to know Erik and I quickly found out that he had a wealth of knowledge and a willingness to share. It was impressive the number of anglers that had the opportunity to go thru the casting classes he taught. I loved listening to the stories of his trips and how the challenges of weather or fish not feeding, never daunted him and the trips ended up successful. Erik is a guy that has the knowledge and enjoys sharing that knowledge and in my opinion would be a great go to guide. Linn Beck.  Former T.U. state council Chairman

"I had known Erik for a couple of years when he managed the fly fishing department at Orvis Milwaukee. He was always fun to deal with and his desire to point a customer in the right direction was always helpful. When he started his guide service I was eager to spend some time with him. My son and I spent two days with Erik in May of 2018. It was a truly wonderful experience. Erik practices fly fishing as an art form and he is not only a wonderful artist but a fantastic teacher. We learned more about reading the water from Erik in two days than I thought possible. We went off on our own on the third day to a river we had never fished and rather than our usual experience of driving home and discussing why there were no trout in that river, we caught six good trout in two hours (and missed several others) by concentrating on the places in the river that trout should be according to what Erik had taught us. And, by God, they were there.
 All in all, fishing with Erik is a wonderful and enlightening experience not to be missed if you are looking for a guide in the Driftless spring creeks."
Jerry Smith avid angler




Your teacher and guide
Erik Helm

Erik Helm is a fly-fisherman, writer of fly-fishing essays and stories, teacher and avid outdoorsman who enjoys inspiring his clients and students. Erik has taught thousands of anglers to cast and fish the fly over the last 15 years. He writes the fly-fishing literary blog "The classical Angler." Erik is an accomplished caster of many styles of fly rods, and is a dedicated student of the sport and fly-fishing historian.

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