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Monthly Archives: August 2016

August 20, 2016

Luxury lobster boats: combining performance and comfort

Maine boatbuilders find a ready market for semi-custom fiberglass lobster boats among experienced yachtsmen.

Charlie Harriman, a sport fisherman, is planning a journey that would make a lot of his friends envious: He’s working all the salmon rivers from Portland, Maine, to the north shore of Quebec. The Portland fisherman will be making the trip in his Holland 32, a Down East-style lobster boat that has never hauled a trap, but has taken Harriman and his wife on cruises to most of the Gulf of Maine islands as well as New Brunswick.Continue reading

August 11, 2016

Wading in

New technologies and an expanding consumer audience are casting a strong light on the fishing wader market. Meanwhile, high-detail, realistic designs are swimming to the top of the embroidery market.

“Glowing.”

That’s the word that Gerry Walton, president and CEO of Fly Technologies, uses to describe the state of the wader market in 1997.

Business at the Fort Worth, TX-based wader producer is up 300 percent over the last nine months, due in part to a demographic shift in the fly fishing market where the more affluent male is no longer dominating the sport.

Men_fly_fishing

“Part of the growth is because waders are transcending fly fishing,” says Walton. “It’s not just a white collar sport anymore. The blue collar guys are looking for something new. They’re bored of the same old thing.”

Jill Coughlin of Lacrosse, WI-based Red Ball hasn’t seen quite the growth being realized at Fly Tech, but she states that demographic shifts toward women and children are accounting for significant new business. Just as the family has become the bread and butter of the outdoor market, each member of the family unit is contributing to the surge in fishing wader sales.

“It’s a reflection on the growth of the whole outdoor trend, and it has affected the wader business as well,” says Coughlin.

To capitalize on this shift, Red Ball has introduced a junior wader and women’s wader which Coughlin states have performed well.

To date, new technology has only trickled into the neoprene dominated wader category. But several companies predict technology will be critical to sustaining an upward sales trend in the market.

Orvis, which designs and manufactures exclusively for its own fleet of retail stores, recently introduced its No Sweat waterproof/best breathable waders (more information), which are constructed with a “Gore-Tex-like” fabric. In addition, Orvis has introduced its Bullet Proof wader, a PVC/polyurethane wader that can stand up to heavy brush and branches – which is a boon to the more adventurous anglers who seek out back-wood lakes and streams.

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August 3, 2016

Mad about Shad

You don’t have to be a specialist to take your share of shad.

Way to go, Meredith!” said guide Mike Bogue. “You’ve got a fish on all right.” The fish Bogue was referring to was my 19-year-old daughter’s first American shad, a tipper male of about three pounds that she hooked on the Sacramento River near Red Bluff. It was June 1994 and Meredith’s first shad trip, but by the time the evening was over my daughter was the veteran of a dozen battles. I’d like to think that the reason she outfished me was strictly beginner’s luck.Continue reading

August 1, 2016

FISH EXPO-Seattle: in search of new technology

Several state-of-the-art fishery and marine industry equipment were unveiled during the FISH EXPO-Seattle which was held in Washington on Sep. 28-30, 1995. These include an incinerating marine toilet, a Global Positioning System-based survival system, a small-boat processing equipment and color-screen radar system.
Every year manufacturers bring an impressive assortment of new equipment to FISH EXPO. We asked boats and gear specialist Charles Summers to walk the aisles and report on what he found.Continue reading