Sunday, January 30, 2011

Fly Fishing Show Reveiw

This was my first experience at the Fly Fishing Show. I liked it a lot but I came away a little confused. I was told before hand that a lot of vendors were going to have bargain bins with amazing deals. There wasn't much of that. A few places had 50% off apparel but it was pretty picked over and odd sizes. There were some good deals on flies. An example was a dozen flies for $10. I was puzzled that more vendors didn't have good deals. The market they are selling too was literally coming to them.

The best part was probably the speakers. There were professional casters and fly tiers. Bob Clouser gave a casting instruction and Whitlock had a presentation on deer hair flies.

Both drew big crowds. It was interesting that Clouser had different casting advice than someone who gave a presentation just a few hours prior. They almost contradicted themselves. All I took away was casting is really about personal preference and what works for you. There was a nice casting lane in the middle of the show where people could test out rods. You could see people lined up around the sides to not only watch the action of the rod but also critique the caster. There were targets laid out in a pool for people to cast too. Some people got their line stuck in the rafters up above. I think the embarrassing experience made other people reluctant to try casting. I have to admit I was one of those people. It has been so cold and all this fly fishing stuff made me just want to cast a rod. I finally gave in and made my way to the casting lane. I was sure I was going to do something stupid. Luckily I didn't and made a few nice casts to the targets.

I never really knew who Dave Whitlock was but after seeing his art, fly tying instruction and checking out some of his books I was impressed..

I decided to buy his book about Fly Fishing For Bass. It's a book I need since I rarely catch a lot of large mouth. Dave kindly autographed it and I was really happy with what he did.

I watched Dave do this for several other people and it was easy to see that he not only loves fishing but appreciates his fans. He doesn't have to do any of this. He could go to a show and give a talk take his money and leave. I'm sure he doesn't even need money, he's in his 70's and could probably spend the rest of his days fishing. Instead, he chooses to autograph books, give free trying instruction presentations and will talk and share his knowledge with anyone.

The Triangle Fly Fishers had a great presence at the show.

There was a lot of interest. This is what the club needed. Raleigh-Durham is a pretty big area and it's difficult to get exposure to the right people. It seemed people were looking for the same thing, fishing information for local waters. For some reason warm water fly fishing is not getting the same recognition as cold water trout fishing. Our club is trying to show people that you don't have to drive 3hrs for great fishing, there is great rivers in your own backyard. We'll see how the response is in the next coming week. There was also a lot in interest in fly tying. Our club had a booth set up for beginning fly tying where people could tie a wooly bugger themselves. The booth was always full and kids seemed to really enjoy it.

It was nice to talk to other organizations and groups. Thomas from Carolina Fly ties balsa wood poppers that are amazing to look at as I'm sure they are to fish. He is a native from Cary, NC and like most started out spin fishing then eventually moved to a fly rod. The craftsmanship of his flies is top notch.

He had never heard of TFF before and after talking for awhile seemed interested in joining us. The Eno River is one of is favorite places to go and he was pleased about our club adopting a stretch.

The Fly Fishing Show in general was great. It was nice to be at the booth and help spread the word about TFF. It was also fun just to talk to people about where they fished, what they tie and their philosophies on the sport. I wish my job was to talk about a hobby I love all day.

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