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G.Loomis celebrates their 25 year Anniversary
January 29 2007 11:38pm
Submitted: Zander

WOODLAND, WA. G.Loomis celebrates its 25th year in business and Executive Director Bruce Holt put together an article paying tribute to the company's founder, Gary Loomis, and the rod manufacturer's storied past.

Bruce Holt writes: Gary Loomis has always been and will always be an avid outdoorsman. He is a unique individual. He is passionate, driven, opinionated and strong-willed. He is one of those individuals that hits the floor running and never slows down.

Several years ago, he had a dream. He wanted to make the best ultra-light steelhead rod that money could buy and nobody in the world made anything close. Gary was (and still is) a fanatical angler and was frustrated because those hyper-active summer-run steelhead in the Kalama River, just up the freeway from our Woodland, Washington factory, were very difficult to catch with such low, clear water conditions during the summer & fall. Hooking them with light line and small baits was effective, but the winter steelhead rods area anglers used were just too powerful for the light line and they broke off a lot of fish.

He first developed an ultra-light drift rod using a fly rod blank that was much softer and more forgiving than the standard steelhead drift rod. It did a much better job of absorbing the vicious head shakes, darting runs and wild jumps of the acrobatic summer-run steelhead. While it made it a little more difficult to handle the bigger fish, the hook-ups increased, but more importantly, he began to land more and more fish!

It didn't take long for other anglers to see what was going on and the next thing you know everyone in the "summer-run" cult wanted one of his special rods. As time went by, he refined his techniques and his rods and the next thing you know he started building blanks. Within a year or so, he started a blank company (Loomis Composites, Inc.) and a few years later, following a short hiatus from the fishing industry, he started making rod blanks under his own label...G.Loomis, Inc. That was January of 1982 and today, G.Loomis is recognized as one of the leaders in the fishing rod business, making very technical, high performance graphite rods for bass, walleye, trout, salmon, steelhead, bonefish, tarpon, redfish...well, you get the picture.

In May of 1997, Shimano American Corporation purchased the company from Gary and today, it's bigger and better than ever. Gary still has an office here at the factory where he not-so-quietly takes on salmon fisheries issues under the auspices of his new conservation group called Fish First. He still works with us promoting the company at a few sport shows around the country and hosts a few special visitors at the plant, but he is no longer involved in the day-to-day activities of G.Loomis. He remains a devout supporter of the brand and we hope he always will.










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