Nine months out of the year, Timbre Pringle and Darcy Toner work full-time jobs like the rest of us. Those other three months? That's when they make hay, spending nearly every waking minute in the streams and rivers that carve through the Canadian Rockies. With a combined 30 years' fly fishing experience, Timbre and Darcy know the waters well and spend their summers working as guides, sharing their knowledge with fly veterans and newcomers alike. Both Darcy and Timbre are talented with a camera, too. The name Faceless works well for Darcy, who's usually the one shooting. Timbre's cover has been blown for years. More often than not, she and her catch are the subject matter of Darcy's incredible photos which can regularly be seen on the pages and covers of magazines and catalogs. Their photos are the kind that make it difficult to stay indoors, but it's the duo's skill on the water that landed them a gig as Orvis Ambassadors.
Are the two of you competitive with one another?
Darcy: Years ago, we may have had a bit of healthy competition between us, but now that we’re both accomplished anglers, we work as a team toward the same goal: capturing images while catching fish, and most importantly having a good time.
Darcy, is it tough to sit behind a camera while watching Timbre fish, or has photography taken over as your primary passion?
Darcy: Not at all. I enjoy watching Timbre catch fish, and we both get equal time to get a line in the water. If it's a good day with great light, and we're in the right location, I'll step back, pull out the camera and wait for that perfect shot. We've both been lucky enough to catch our fair share of memorable fish, so we're just happy when we get a chance to see one more. Who catches it doesn't matter. These days, if I get the chance to capture the right photo from an experience, I get more excited than if I caught the fish myself. That said, if we're in a new destination and have the opportunity to tackle a new species, all above statements go out the window.
What's the worst day you've had on the water? Has it changed the way you've prepared or done things since?
Darcy: About 7 years ago, we were on a guided salt water trip in Honduras. There was a big storm the night before and the seas were still rough. We spent the first half of the day in the calmer waters on the flats, then made our way to the other side of the island when our guide decided things had calmed down enough. To get to our destination, we had to cross over a break of coral and choppy blue waters. This was a decision we’d all soon regret. As we crossed the choppy waters, our boat slammed down from a cresting 15-foot break, cracking the bow. Then we discovered that there was only one life jacket. We had six people on board. The whole ordeal lasted only minutes but it felt like hours, and was pretty frightening. The boat ride back was much more pleasant and we all lived to see another day. Now, when we prepare for a trip, we do more research on the guide and we confirm that there are enough life jackets to go around.
What are some items that can usually be found under your DiamondBack? Anything you'd never leave home without?
Timbre: Our Tacoma’s bed is almost always packed with gear. We keep our fly rods, reels, fly boxes, backpacks, wading gear and bear spray under our cover. As fly anglers, you learn to take everything along no matter where you’re heading. The day you leave home without your gear will be the day you drive over a river and see a bunch of rising fish. To seize every opportunity, you need to be prepared. We also keep a number of tools, ratchet straps, first aid kit, supplies for a fire. When you’re spending a lot of time in the backcountry, these things are an absolute must. Our DiamondBack keeps everything secure or we’d be worried about sharing this stuff on the internet!