(A quick word of advice to the show's organizers for next year: I almost didn't get to pay and admission fee. The parking situation was so frustrating that we just about gave up and went home. Mrs. Fading Angler suggests you consider going back to the National Sports Center in Blaine or another facility with ample parking available in the immediate vacinity.)
Mrs. FA was looking for discounted fly tying supplies, and I wanted to visit four specific vendors.
The first one I encountered was Quik-Cast. You may or may not recall that we saw their products at the Flyfishing Show in Denver. This time, I purchased the XD rod/reel case and an LT kit.
The other item I've been wanting to purchase is the Dragonfly Rod Holder from O'Pros. Here's mine:
Really simple: attach it to your wading belt/waistband, and now you have somewhere to tuck your rod, leaving both arms and hands completely free.
I've been trying to cobble together a "hands-free" system for re-rigging on the water. I'm hoping this little gem will do the trick. I talked to David Jacobson, one of the three founding brothers, in the booth for a few minutes. He also showed me a small flybox they're working on that slips right over the top of the holder, essentially covering the
A couple of years ago, we stumbled across Limit Creek Fishing Rod Co. in the hardware store of the small town of Spring Valley, MN. Their lineup of "Driftless Dream" fly rods started as an 8' long 4 weight, an 8'6" long 5 weight, and a 9' long 6 weight. I was surprised to see that the 5 weight rod finished in the Top 10 of Yellowstone Angler's Five-Weight Shootout last year, placing 7th out of 30 rods accepted for the battle! Other models have been added to the lineup, including the 9' long 5 weight that the Yellowstone Angler folks were wishing for. I've wanted to try casting the 4 short weight since we initially saw it. I intended to do so at the show, but we ran out of time and I didn't get back to that booth. I might just have to save up a few pennies for later in the summer, because these rods are priced at a very reasonable $189. I'm looking for a shorter 4 weight for those little Driftless creeks covered in a tree canopy.
Finally, I was surprised to see that the owners of a Washington State guide and hospitality service made the long trek to Minnesota. Jack and Jennifer Mitchell own and operate The Evening Hatch, "10 Great Rivers, 3 Cool Lodges, 1 Little Fly Shop." Mrs. FA and I stopped into the "Little Fly Shop" in Ellensburg, WA when we went on a sightseeing trip a couple of years ago to the Yakima River. (It's tiny, but cool!) I also recently discovered that KynsLee Scott, a guide who has spent her career in Missoula, Montana, recently went to work for the Evening Hatch. I wanted to find out how they
Those were the highlights. Mrs. FA picked up some essentials for the tying supplies box. Sadly, I didn't find any vendors or suitable displays of vises for sale. That adventure continues...