I went to the show on Opening Day (Wednesday) on a quest to find some new and interesting things to write about, setup a trip or two, restock on consumable stuff (jigs, plastic, hooks, line etc.) and just soak it all in.
Over the years, my perspective on the show has changed. The first year I went, I went fanboy on Brandon Hayward and had him sign my copy of The Southern California Angler (right – out-of-print but pick it up if you can find it). I was a little more product-deal focused back then. Still, it was thrilling to see the people that I’d read about, heard on the radio, or seen on tv.
Today, I’m lucky to play a role in the industry. I still like a deal as much as the next guy (here’s what went in my bag), but it isn’t a driving factor behind why I go.
I am shopping for a few specific tools, so it’s great to go to one place, pull on rods from different manufacturers (or hold the reel, feel the line etc.) and talk directly to the factory reps. I definitely gained some perspective that I think will ultimately lead to more satisfying buying decisions.
When it was all said and done, my favorite part of the show is seeing all my friends. A bunch of us went to dinner after closing out Day 1. I was kicking around ideas about what to write about for this article. My buddy Nick Lam (Seeker pro staffer who I did the SF Rockfish & Crab trip with) made a great point. “We’re all ‘the fishing guy’ at our real job. It’s just nice to be surrounded by like minded people.”
Top Tips For The Show
Sometimes, a totally different perspective can spark an idea for something else. If all else fails, it gives you time to sit with a friend and chat (sit away from the folks intent on the seminar). I’m game to go sit by the saltwater tank and observe anytime.