I went last year, it was pretty cool. I was in a wheelchair cuz I had a broken foot, if I was walking it probably would have been better :lol: but it was cool. I dont think we bought much, we just went and browsed. I wouldnt mind going back this year though.
Its nice to go look around. Sometimes you find new things or things that you never knew existed. Like three years ago we found the worlds greatest bow rests, drop aways for $30 bucks. And they work great. You can get some good info and some stickers and stuff. I like going. I have to limit my self to only takin a hundred bucks or I come home broke. A couple years ago I bought a really nice Badlands internal frame pack for $80.00. Best ivestment ever, even though I have yet to pack an animal out on it.
I've been every year, but I help at a friends booth and get in for free. Everybody should go at least two or three times. If I had to pay to go, I would not go again - I've already seen it all and then some. But you should go if you have never been.
The last time I went (and its been several years) I walked over to the Berkely booth and the rep told me that if I wanted to buy anything, I'd have to go to a vendor to get anything. The lame thing is.... the store I used to shop at didn't have some of the things I wanted from the display.... so that wasn't exactly working. There was a few booths with jerky, tons of free t-shirts if you tried to apply for a credit card, lots of outfitters that I couldn't afford and besides the meager selection of stuff from Sportsmans, there wasn't a lot to "buy". Lately, a buddy of mine has been running a Badlands booth and he kept asking me to get with him and work that booth so I could get into the show, but I haven't done it and I'm not sure if he's doing anything like that this year.... maybe working at an Easton booth or something. Either way, I probably will not go. I guess if you like to go and window shop, its a cool thing to go to, otherwise you'd probably be better off just going to Sportsmans or Cabelas, since thats where you might wind up being directed anyway.
If you've never been, it'd probably be good to go check it out once. I remember the first time I went, the price was still around six bucks and I thought it was awesome. They had a boat show going on back then as part of it too(it was in the Salt Palace) and I **** near got a new Bayliner for 200 bucks per month.... was approved and talking to the wife about filling out papers on it.....just for some reason decided to walk away instead of putting money down on it. Anyway, enough about that.... go and have a good time. Make sure you report on what you saw, did, found all that stuff. 8)
Make sure you go to one of the retail stores that at least gives you a discount ticket. And go as soon as you hear they have them because they will be out quickly. I did pick up some nifty items that I might have had a hard time finding other places. Some noce little items for backpacking - like an instant reuseable heat pack for your back.
I used to go all the time, but haven't the last two years. If you are looking for a guided trip somewhere for hunting or fishing, it might be worth your time. That's about all there is now, wall to wall outfitters. The demo shows are okay, but watching retrievers and dutch oven chefs doesn't hold my interest year after year.
The fly tying arena is okay if you are into that, but it's been messed up too. You have a main demonstrator, but now they allow a group of other tyers around the perimiter and they take part of the crowd. It seems a little disrespectful to the guy who is on stage. They should have two seperate areas in my opinion.
Then you have the long distance casting competition. That's fun to watch, but again, gets boring year after year and It seems to be the same old gurus who do any good at it anyway.
I don't think I'll go down again this year, but will say, if you've never been, the first time is kind of neat.
I like the way the fly tying area is set up, but I am pretty disappointed in the choice of patterns. It seems that everyone is tying stillwater flies so most of the time people are just watching another variation of a woolly bugger (seal bugger, krystal killer, etc..) or spin offs of some Denny Rickards pattern. I think it would benefit from some variation such as saltwater flies, tube flies, steelhead flies, and some terrestrials.
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