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Featured Article: Show Coverage

Welcome back to Fred Hall San Francisco, bigger and better than before

Date: 1/16/05
Location: San Francisco, CA
Event Dates: 1/12-1/16
Admission: Adults: 10 Dollars 
Kids 15 and under: Free
Reviewer: Team TackleTour

Introduction: The Fred Hall Show comes to San Francisco every year and we always eagerly anticipate covering the show, as it is the first opportunity in the new year for us to get a first hand look at some of the latest tackle and watercraft products, get feedback from manufacturers about design trends, and talk to other ardent anglers about the sport. At this year's show the latest fishing gear was given more prominence on the show floor, and the show highlighted a greater variety of watercraft, including river, lake, offshore, and bass boats. Half of our editorial staff attended the show and what we found were plenty of activities for both fresh and saltwater anglers, an assortment of exciting new boats, and some very enthusiastic manufacturers eager to highlight their latest 2005 tackle offerings.


Cal casts away at the Triton boats virtual challenge simulator trailer

This year the ASA (American Sportfishing Association), purchased the show in partnership with Fred Hall and Associates and sought to improve the event with new attractions, and a greater emphasis on tackle tailored towards regional applications. "We're looking forward to building on the past successes of the San Francisco Sports and Boat Show, especially by giving sportfishing companies the opportunity to offer a stronger showing of fishing gear for northern California's anglers," said Mike Nussman, President and CEO of the American Sportfishing Association.


What this new partnership essentially translates into for attendees is a bigger, better show. This year a number of big name pros made special appearances at the show, running seminars and providing hands on instruction. Pros like Gary Dobyns, Al Lidner, Roland Martin, Randy Pringle, Skeet Reese, Mark Lassagne, and Captain Jose Wejebe all conducted workshops sharing valuable insights about their respective specialties. Between presentations there was plenty to do including trying your luck at the Triton virtual challenge bass fishing simulator, learning to cast a fly outfit, taking the kids out to the Berkley kids trout pond, or cheering on the ESPN DockDogs. Anglers looking for killer deals took advantage of major show discounts from Outdoor Pro Shop or HI's Tackle Box.


While there certainly were a number of worthwhile events to soak in at the show our team remained focused on what we came to see...the latest and greatest tackle. Here's what we found:


Woody Wood showed us the exciting Shimano Chronarch B (upper right) and the premium Magnesium bodied Stella FB (lower right)

Shimano: The team at Shimano has been hard at work and it shows, Woody Wood highlighted the now available Chronarch B, which now features HEG (High Efficiency Gearing, a Dartanium drag, and a complete aluminum construction from the frame to both sideplates. The brand new Stella FB was breathtaking when we originally got our preview shots, and while our interest was already peaked, the pics really don't do these reels justice. The StellaFB's Magnesium frame and sideplate make these reels extremely lightweight, while the new SR-Concept helps make them silky smooth. The reel sets a new benchmark for magnesium spinning reels, and will look just as good in any artistic glass display case, as it would strapped on a premium rod. Woody also highlighted up and coming products including the refined Calcutta B with ARB bearings and dartanium drag, and the very exciting Tyrnos saltwater trolling reel which features an open top crossbar design, a ratcheting lever drag, and an oversized set of gears for more power.


Gil Camargo showed us Daiwa's new Saltist (lower left) with "full metal jacket" construction and we also got a glimpse of the top of the line Certate
spinning reel (upper right)

Daiwa: Daiwa got off to a running start with the TD Advantage, SOL, and Fuego last quarter and from the looks of things the pace has just picked up a notch. Its no secret that our staff loved the Saltiga, and we were ecstatic to learn that Daiwa is releasing a similar reel called the Saltist with many of the same benefits, but made more affordable. The Saltist features all metal construction (no graphite here), CRBB bearings, powerful high strength alloy gears, and is capable of delivering a devastating 22 pounds of drag pressure right out of the box. Daiwa's answer to the new Stella is a contemporary flagship spinning reel, the Certate. The Certate is simply the most fluid reel we have ever cranked, Daiwa's main goal in the reel's design and construction of this original reel was to reduce every iota of unnecessary friction and vibration. The result is a 10BB silent running reel that delivers a new-found level of precision. The reel is so precise that slight pressure from our fingertip to the front of the spool was enough to set the handle in motion.


Quantum's new Accurist baitcast reels look and feel excellent, and are an absolutely amazing bargain when you consider the price. Best of all you can pick from three brilliant colors

In our Zebco/Quantum product preview article we mentioned the new Quantum reels due out in 2005. The Fred Hall Show was our first time seeing some of these products and we were very impressed with the new fully re-designed Accurist baitcast reels. They now come in a smaller profile and a more ergonomic shape, 3 splendid colors, and much more. All of our Editors agreed that this reel is sure to be a hot selling item due to it's quality and aggressive pricing. Its hard to believe these reels can be found at stores or online retailers for around $79.99! Reiterating Quantum's commitment to introduce high quality product at prices within reach of all anglers.


Jeff Jost showcased a complete range of new storage solutions under the popular Albackore brand, including new tackle bags, padded reel cases, large capacity storage boxes, and an assortment of jig wraps


Albackore: To date Albackore has been the only "storage" solution to ever win an award of any kind from TackleTour, and we were pleased to discover a complete assortment of stirring new solutions being offered under the popular brand. Jeff Jost owner and CEO of the company was on hand to show us the new "Altunative" fishing bag which is a smaller version of the original Albackore pack. The Altunative is smaller in profile and designed to hold 3 boxes, features a plethora of storage including a fully padded top section, reinforced sunglass/cellphone holder, and an enormous side pocket capable of holding additional boxes or Albackore Jig wraps. The Altunative is a perfect size bag for 2-3 day offshore expeditions, and while all of Albackore's solutions are ideal for saltwater anglers, this smaller bag is also an excellent choice for bass fisherman. Jeff also introduced us to Albackore's new reel transports which are wonderful for safe and organized reel storage while on the go, and a configurable 3 inch deep utility box capable of holding full sized bags of plastics or even high capacity line spools. The Albackore brand of tackle storage solutions is now endorsed by none other than California's Bass Guru Ronnie Kovach.  


Cliff Liddy highlights Persuader's new Double Buzzer which can be tuned to deliver a variety of distinctive resonances on the water

Persuader American Angling: Cliff Liddy from Persuader American Angling introduced us to "The Double Buzzer" (as shown in the picture) which is crafted using Persuader's powder painted large flat head for fast and easy planing and slow retrieves. But what's so special about this buzzbait is that the two blades counter rotate and can be adjusted to either clip each other when retrieved to create a clicking sound or spread apart by pulling on the wires to just create commotion on the top of the water. Other exciting Persuader lures include multi-blade spinnerbaits where one would occasionally spin out of tune to mimic a wounded baitfish, and buzzbaits that have double inline blades that spin in opposite directions.


River2Sea's latest lures are both innovative and extremely detailed in design and finish

River2Sea: River2Sea is a company no saltwater or freshwater anglers should overlook. Simply because they produce some of the most innovative and uniquely finished lures on the market. This year they introduced many new lures and the most eye catching ones at the show were their Pro-series genuine wood lures in their Collector's Edition such as the Wood'n Waddle Frog and Wood'n Sunfish. These wooden lures are incredibly detailed and sport all premium components throughout. The paint job on these lures is superb and the lure's profiles are dead on.

Zander admires a 250 Verado mounted on a Triton at Galaxie Marine's booth


Galaxie Marine (Verado): A year ago when we unveiled Project-X we didn't know just what to think about the new supercharged outboard other than the fact it was certainly an exciting endeavor on Mercury's part. One year later we all know Project-X as the potent Verado. Galaxie Marine based in Newcastle, CA is an authorized Triton dealer and showed off some premium Triton boats loaded with 250hp Verado's. These big menacing black engines are the most powerful fourstroke outboards on the market and deliver plenty of torque, feature instant response digital throttle, are remarkably quiet, and best of all fourstroke technology ensures that these monsters are emissions complaint for years to come.


Gone Fishin' Marine showcased some very eye-catching Nitro bassboats including the dual center console 911 CDC which allows anglers to fish 360-degrees all around


Gone Fishin' Marine (Nitro 911CDC): While all bassboats are thrilling to pilot, the Nitro 911CDC is among the most unique rides on the water. Gone Fishin' Marine based in Dixon, CA an authorized Nitro dealer showcased a 911CDC complete with electronics, hot foot throttle, and of course the revolutionary center dual console design which puts all of the weight in the center of the boat and allows anglers to fish 360-degrees around all around the boat. This monster of a boat can sit 4 people across with the driver and co-pilot in the center, and is capable of achieving speeds in the excess of 75mph with a 225hp Verado at the rear.


Conclusion: The partnership between the Fred Hall Show and the American Sportfishing Association has resulted in an enhanced show with more to see and do for anglers of all ages. We had the opportunity to see, touch, and experience some of the latest tackle and watercraft firsthand, and meet some unforgettable personalities at the show. The Fred Hall show is a great place to get your feet wet when it comes to getting great deals on tackle, deciding which boat is perfect for your unique needs, or learning some great tips and techniques from the pros. The easy part is going to the show, the hard part is to stop drooling after experiencing all the latest and greatest products of 2005 up close and personal.  










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