Costa Shop Talk – Fisherman’s Landing

shop talkOur Shop Talk project continues here at BD. We will be reaching out to a wide variety of local tackle shops from around the country who all share the same desire; to provide their outdoor-loving customers with first class gear, tackle and service. Join us as they fill us in on how they do it.

San Diego’s own Fisherman’s Landing shares some history with us and a glimpse at the future.

shop talk

Q:Where is your shop located?

A:Fisherman’s Landing on San Diego Bay.

tackle shop

Q:When did the shop open?

A:We opened up in 1965.

costa sunglasses

Q:What would you like to share about the history of your business?

A:Fisherman’s Landing was founded by Bill Poole and Bruce Barnes in 1965. The landing has always had a strong tackle presence. Throughout the years, various tackle manufacturers have tested and developed their new offerings on the local and long range boats. In 1986 Doug Kern came on as general manager of the tackle shop. In 1992 Fisherman’s Tackle Corp, commonly now known as Fisherman’s Landing Tackle was formed so that there could be a concentrated effort on fishing tackle. The tackle shop is one of the leading tackle retailers in the country offering cutting edge quality saltwater fishing tackle and some of the finest customer service available anywhere. Fisherman’s Landing Tackle began carrying Costa sunglasses about 20 years ago. This was before most people on the west coast had even heard of them. It was apparent to the tackle shop personnel that Costa was a high quality brand of eyewear that would be a perfect fit for serious saltwater captains, crewmembers, and anglers. This early assessment turned out to be spot on and Costa is a main product available in the tackle shop.

fishermans landing

Q:How has the shop evolved?

A:In the early years, the tackle shop was basically a tackle counter inside the landing offering passengers a convenient way to pick up some hooks, line, sinkers, and jigs. In 1986 when Bill Poole and Frank LoPreste made the decision to expand Fisherman’s Landing Tackle Shop, Doug Kern was hired as general manager. This period of time coincided with the expansion of the long range fishing fleet and many new fishing techniques were being developed. With these new techniques came new tackle innovations as well, such as the advent of 2-speed fishing reels. In the 90s many new tackle manufactures were popping up and the existing ones were inventing new tackle items. Another innovation that changed the face of saltwater fishing was braided fishing lines. The new small diameter and stronger lines allowed the angler to hold more line on their reels. This led to reels getting smaller and stronger over the next decade or so. The tradition of Fisherman’s Landing Tackle being involved in tackle development continues today.

fishing tackle

Q:What types of fishing and outdoor activities do you focus on?

A:Fisherman’s Landing Tackle Shop focuses on Southern California and Mexico style saltwater fishing from bay bass, calico bass, rockfish, yellowtail, tuna, dorado, wahoo, billfish, and anything else that swims in the Pacific ocean.

san diego

Q:Where do you see it going in future?

A:The future looks bright at Fisherman’s Landing Tackle. The sport of saltwater fishing is quite popular and Fisherman’s Landing Tackle is a very special place in the hearts of anglers.

fisherman's landing

Q:Do you see more or less anglers participating in the sport?

A:In general saltwater fishing has expanded in popularity over the past several decades. As long as there are fish to catch I see the trend continuing. Fishing does however go though cycles and in those years where fish are not as available some less avid anglers tend to seek alternative activities until the fish return. This was clearly seen in the tough years between 2008 and 2011. When the fish began to return in 2012 it was game on again. Retailing in the saltwater fishing arena is not for the faint of heart.

fishing tackle

Q:Do you sell saltwater, freshwater tackle or both?

A:Fisherman’s Landing Tackle is 100% focused on saltwater fishing.

fisherman's landing

Q:Could you list some services you offer in addition to your retail products?

A:Fisherman’s Landing Tackle offers a full menu of services including line spooling, line connections, custom rods, rod repair, reel repair and warranty work, jig rigging, leader rigging, California and Mexican fishing licenses, helping anglers with Mexican FMM paperwork, yacht outfitting, high level tackle recommendations, and much more.

costa glasses

Q:What unusual item sells the most?

A:You wouldn’t think that a top tackle retailer would be the ideal place to purchase bath towels or long range “kick back chairs” but we like to make sure that our long range anglers are comfortable on their trip.

offshore tackle

Q:Do you sell bait?

A:Yes, frozen anchovies, squid, sardines, ballyhoo, giant squid and other baits are available.

shop talk

Q:How has El Nino affected your shop?

A:The El Nino of 2014-2016 has been a boom for Southern California and Baja saltwater fishing. Many common and exotic species have been available in large numbers right along the local coastline. It is likely that these will be remembered quite fondly for decades to come as some of the best fishing that many have ever experienced. As a result this has created a temporary windfall for tackle companies supplying anglers in Southern California.

tackle shops

Q:What is the craziest thing that has ever happened in the shop?

A:Oh my gosh, there are way too many things over the past decades to mention. Suffice it to say that there are always antics going on in the tackle shop. For instance, at the Fred Hall show one year, the tackle boys moved the entire P-Line booth into the Daiwa space and the entire Daiwa booth into the P-Line space after hours. When the P-Line and Daiwa guys came to the show on opening day they were quite surprised to see that their booths were gone. This type of thing is going on all the time in the tackle shop.

fishing season

Q:What is your prediction for next year’s fishing season?

A:If I had to guess, prospects for 2016 are looking pretty good. There are yellowtail biting up and down the coast already and the water temperature is warmer than average, especially down deep. Additionally, it has been my observation that fishing rarely goes from awesome to very slow in just one year. Typically trends change more slowly. In my estimation it is fairly likely that the species that we will have access to will once again be the warmer water species such as yellowfin, dorado, yellowtail, etc. With all that said, Mother Nature is so vast that making an accurate prediction is nearly impossible. It will be fun to see it unfold.

tackle shop

Q:Is there anything else you would like BD’ers to know about your shop?

A:I think that the previous comments give a pretty good perception as to what the tackle shop is all about. Our crew is serious about outfitting anglers with the proper gear but they all have fun and entertaining personalities. It really is a very special place.

Check out their site for more information, or to contact them.

shop talk