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Author Topic: Fishing Show - The Noob Report - Part 1  (Read 206 times)


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Fishing Show - The Noob Report - Part 1
« on: January 14, 2019, 09:17:35 AM »

There was an event this weekend a couple of hours east of me in Raleigh, NC called the "Bass & Saltwater Fishing Expo" that was billed as the largest fishing expo in the southeast.  The flyers and infomercials promised more vendors under one roof than ever before as well as seminars and demonstrations by fishing pro's and industry experts.

After seeing one of the ad's for the show on television my wonderful wife asked it I was going, which I followed with a question of my own, "I don't know, do you want to go?"  She reminded me that when I started this "new hobby" she told me in no uncertain terms that she had no interest in it what so ever, but supported me in it 100%.  So, no, even considering all the Christmas craft shows, antique stores and bicycling events and shops I had been to with her over the years, she would not be most definitely NOT be going to a fishing show.

Great!  A Kitchen Pass!

Saturday morning rolled around and by the time I got out of bed and some things done that needed doing before I left, it was a little after 9:00 am before I was on the road.  I pulled into the fairgrounds parking lot a little after 11:00 am and was in absolute awe at the sight that greeted me pulling through the gate.  Parking was almost non-existent, in fact they had opened up additional lots and I ended up parking nearly a half mile away from the gate.  The line to get in was almost as long, stretching out well past the length of the building and then doing the "Disneyland Twists" once inside the (thankfully) covered and heated temporary shelter set up in front of the ticket booths.

Once inside two things immediately came to mind. 1.) the venue was set up exactly like any gun show I have ever attended with the vendors in rows, back to back and aisles between them for the show goers to wander down perusing their wares.  2.) somebody misjudged the crowd...  there were so many people in attendance and the aisles were so narrow that the simple act of stopping to look at something created a bottleneck in the flow of people that made passage almost impossible.

After making a lap or two just trying to get the lay of the land, see what was there and determine what vendors I wanted to try and spend time at I left the tackle building and went into the building where the boat vendors were hoping the crowd would thin out some.  There were far fewer people there and I was able to look a little, but since I'm not in the market for a boat, it was really just a matter of killing time.  The good thing that did come of it though was that I found the room where a particular seminar I was interested was going to be held as well as a Lowrance Pro Staff member's "booth" and could see that he seemed to be easily approachable.

Wandering back into the foray that was the tackle building I found the crowd, just in that amount of time, had lessened considerably and while still packed, at least now it was possible to stop, look and check things out.  And while that was a good thing, the problem for the Noob was that I only had a vague idea of what I was looking at.  The number of lures there was staggering and somewhat intimidating to be honest.  One booth was a local company that was having a sale on jigs and spinner baits, 3 of each for $10.  Since I am losing more than I am catching fish with this seemed like a good thing for me to look into.  There were literally hundreds of these things, different sizes, colors, etc.  One of the guys working the booth asked me if he could help me find something, I explained that I was clueless and why, asked him if he was familiar with the local lakes and if he could help me pick something out.

The guy was great, he took time with me, showed me what he liked to use on those lakes and explained why.  Then after grabbing some lures off the rack, he went about changing skirts and blades, then trimming the skirts for me.  As he was finishing up the jigs he started telling me what color "trailers" to use. 

Immediately my mind reverted back to Dale's post concerning using spoons and I had the exact same reaction.  WTF is a trailer?  Are we talking about semi trailers, boat trailers, what?  In my mind I envisioned tying a line to the hook with some other kind of lure or hook on it, but I thought those were called "double rigs".  The guy had been great to me, but my pride and not wanting to be embarrassed took over so I stood there nodding at him like I knew exactly what he was talking about, then took my purchase to the counter, paid and left.

My next stop was what I'll call a "bargain basement" vendor where there were plastic tubs of various baits and lures still in the box all priced the same, with prices marked from $1 to $8.  I raided the $1, $2 & $3 bins, loading myself up on expendable "tree pounder" baits.

Since I am out of line on my new to me bait casting rig I decided to get some line while I was there, I mean, after all, how hard could that be?


The last time I fished monofilament was the stuff to use.  Since then I've read about and heard mentioned on the fishing porn I watch as my darling bride calls it, braided line and fluorocarbon, but had no idea what it was or why you would use it.  The 1st vendor I walked into had tubs of line set up similar to the lure guy.  Most were brands I never heard of, which means nothing coming from me, but numbers of different types, colors, strength, etc. was again, staggering.  There were even "hybrids" for crying out loud.  In this "bargain basement" vendor, help was no where to be found, so I moved on until I got to a vendor who was a line manufacturer and had nothing else in their booth.

Again, I was greeted and spoken to by someone who seemed to know what they were talking about and offered their assistance.  I gave him my story and said, "fix me up".  Now, I know he meant well, and I know he was genuinely trying to help, but he might as well have been speaking a foreign language when he started asking me questions about how I would be using the line.  (Duh, fishing with it...) Most of it had to do with the types of baits I'd be using, the cover I'd be fishing in and the color of the water, which at this point in my fishing life can only be answered by saying; "Ummm, whatever I find when I get there?" 

He started explaining about the visibility of the line to the fish, how the color spectrum of the water changes it, how fluorocarbon is less visible, but then winked and said, but I guess no one's ever actually spoken to a bass and found that to be true.  Then he asked would I be "backing the line".


I swear, before I could stop myself I blurted out "How do you put anything on the back of line and isn't that shit round?  How do you know which side is the back?"

He explained to me, between laughs, that meant using a cheaper filler line on the reel then tying the good stuff on last.

"Oh. Well, no, I won't be backing it then because I don't trust my knots enough yet to put more than one in the line I'm using and besides, wouldn't that cause additional wear and be a potential place for the line to stick and back lash?"

Then he gave me the deer in the head lights look, and decided that what I needed was some 12 lb test monofilament and sent me on my way.

I put that on my reel Sunday.

Part two, the seminar, coming next... 

« Last Edit: January 14, 2019, 02:34:05 PM by RDY2GO »
Bruce McCrary
Cotton Grove, NC


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Re: Fishing Show - The Noob Report - Part 1
« Reply #1 on: January 14, 2019, 09:51:57 AM »

LOL great post Bruce! 

Takes me back and hits home for me a little.  I had fished some as a kid in the 80s/90s with friends, but we never really knew what we were doing half the time - we usually just soaked a worm or bacon or something similar until we got bit.  But we had a great time.  Occasionally in the 90s/00s i would fish at the beach on vacation in florida and get lucky and catch an occasional dumb snook or whiting and tons of catfish.  Then in 2012 i was part of a 'reduction in force' and was out of work.  Once the depression of being out of work wore off I decided to get out and try fishing again.  I had never fished jigs or crankbaits.  I spent 2 months fishing and reading and watching youtube to find out all I could.  Finally caught my first fish on a jig during that time and Ive been hooked ever since.  Looking forward to your next post! :)
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