Last Thursday, Friday, and part of Saturday I had the privilege of
attending the Fly Tackle Retailer's Show in Salt Lake City as a guest of
W.L. Gore and Associates. Mike Craig, former owner of the Bighorn Angler,
and I were autographing posters of the Gore Tex ad showing
Paul Dubas and us in front of the car body rip-rap on the Bighorn River.
A portion of that poster is above.
While Mike and I signed a lot of posters, we also had time to sneak away
and view some of the new products for 1999.
One of the products that Mike was really impressed with was a water filter
squeeze bottle that allowed a person to scoop up water from a stream,
squeeze the bottle, and drink pure water untainted by any bacteria. Mike
said the bottle had two 2 micron filters. (Giardia is 5 microns in
diameter). Mike contends that such a filter bottle would allow
recreationists to drink from the waters they are recreating at and
eliminate having to lug along lots of water or a bulky filter system.
Safe Water Anywhere, 111 W. 9th St.,
Durango, Colorado makes the filter bottle. A half liter bottle
costs $34.95 retail; a liter bottle, $39.95. You can also purchase
My discoveries were more along the line of fly fishing and fly tying
equipment and materials.
My friend, Shim Hogan, owner of Angler's Choice,
(Gone Fishing Enterprises of Custer, Washington) has expanded on his line
of Super Floss and now has 30 colors of one of the best fly tying materials to
ever hit the market.
Hogan also has developed a product called Poly-Bear Hair. It is a "blend
of polypropylene fibers and Angel Hair for just the right amount of
glitter." He contends that Poly-Bear Hair won't absorb water and is great
for use in large, bulky flies because they won't get heavy after a few
casts. Hogan also says, "Poly-Bear Hair is much more durable than calf
tail or buck tail."
Another product that Hogan has developed is A.C. non-toxic eyes, cones and
beads. These are 90 percent the weight of pure lead and come in a full
range of sizes, styles and weights. The eyes are injection molded from a
"high specific gravity" rubber compound. All the eyes are uniform and come
in two styles - hourglass and dumbbell. Hogan mentioned to me that "though
the eyes have a rubber compound in them, they still hurt like hell when you
hit yourself in the back of the head."
Al and Gretchen Beatty have a fly fishing products business in Delta,
Colorado, entitled BT'S Fly Fishing Products. One of the
products that they carry that really pleased me was an inexpensive, yet very
rugged and functional large arbor fly reel. The DanReel retails for $60.00.
The large arbor reel provides low start friction - low line memory - fast
reeling - low sound removable click - extreme light weight. If you have
been looking for a good, reliable fly reel at a reasonable price, check
this one out.
Wapsi of Mountain Home, Arkansas has been in
the wholesale fly tying products end of things since I have been a fly tyer
(over 30 years). This year Wapsi has add a number of new products that
are worth taking a look at.
They have come up with a copper wire size that they have called "brassie"
since it falls in between their medium and small sizes of wire. The wire
is the perfect diameter for tying brassies. Incidentally, Wapsi has added
color to their copper wire: black. This will be ideal for tying that dark
midge pupa pattern that appears on the Bighorn in April and May.
Wapsi also has developed a small bead for the bead-head fly. Wapsi's
Cyclops eyes come in sizes 5/64 inch diameter to 3/16 inch diameter. The
smaller size would be ideal for the size 18 and 20 bead head patterns of
midges and mayflies.
Wapsi also has a small, very small, diameter yarn entitled "wee wool
yarn." This will be just ideal for the small fly patterns where a tyer
wants to use a yarn body, rather than dub it on.
There were so many other products at the show that I should mention, but
I've run out of time and space. Suffice it to say that Dan Bailey's
has bunch of new products for 1999 as does the Winston Rod Company.
You will just have to wait until your local fly shop gets those products in, or your
could call and ask for a catalog. Anyway, I can hardly wait to get my hands on these
new toys and try them!
~ Bob Krumm