Much like the way Punxsutawney Phil is the yearly harbinger of Spring, the annual Fred Hall Outdoors Show signals the start of fishing season in Southern California. The Long Beach edition kicked off that ritual rite today with all the usual suspects in attendance: outdoors manufacturers and service providers of every size and ilk, pros and experts from every genre, and show-goers galore! Seminars on the tanks, incredible show-only deals, and even a few new bait and equipment introductions are just some of the perks of attending “the ultimate outdoor experience”.
Even though the show runs through Sunday, I had to be there for Day 1. Not just to work in the Yo-Zuri booth for a few hours, but to be able to report to you some of the more intriguing things I saw there. Of course, the new 3DB baits were a real highlight in the Yo-Zuri booth. Though, many in attendance were also taking advantage of the three different show specials they are offering that can garner free spools of Hybrid Line and/or Pink HD Carbon fluorocarbon leader for purchasing certain Yo-Zuri products sold by various retailers at the show. Stop by the booth for all the details.
New Optimum Swimming Creature Bait
Once I made it to the floor of the show, I headed over to the AA booth to see what all the buzz was about regarding Optimum’s new creature bait. So Cal saltwater legend Mike Garner was manning the booth and told me I had to take it over to the camera tank and check it out. “You won’t believe the action!”, he said. He was right! Whether fishing it like a jig on the bottom or swimming it through the water column, it had an incredible unique action. This bait was so new they only had a few color options available, yet they do have it in two sizes (3.5″ and 6″). These are the smaller variety. I’m thinking that they might make a killer bed-bait for spawning fish … we’ll find out soon!
New Jimmy Caivo Swimbaits
I always stop by Caivo Tackle at the show as they make some of the best terminal tackle around at incredibly reasonable prices. However, it was a new soft plastic bait they are making that caught my eye. It is a kind of a combination of a zipper worm and a paddletail swimmie. Though, the paddle is very small and the tail very long which should make for a new and attractive action the fish have yet to see. I’m thinking this could make either an interesting new swimmie, or possibly an exciting new t-rig candidate. Either way, Jimmy Caivo is offering these in a wide variety of sizes and colors. Pictured here are the 4″ and 6″ versions. I’ll be surprised if these babies don’t entice Bass of both the fresh and salt varieties. Can’t wait to take these out for a test drive!
Don Iovino’s New Little Slugger
Another annual show destination for me is to visit the booth of finesse fishing Godfather, Don Iovino. Besides getting a warm greeting, I’m always interested in what his latest lure offering may be. This year, it turns out that Don is now pouring a mini sluggo-type bait. A finesse favorite of tourney anglers the last few years, Don is bringing his 3″ version to the general fishing public with three unique color offerings. Drop-shot one of these on some tight-lipped fish and hold on tight! The bite inducing action in such a small profile bait is just too much for a Bass to ignore.
Motorguide TR109 Show Special
Before I left the show, I had to spend a few quality minutes with my friend Jarret Edwards, host of the national TV fishing show that bears his name. He is one of those rare individuals that make you feel so good as a human being after having spent some time with him. I found him in “boat alley” repping for his sponsor Lund Boats. We spent some time chatting while sitting in one of their offerings … I gotta say, those boats are truly plush-duck! Though, what was really exciting was that he had a limited load of sonar-ready Motorguide TR109 trolling motors to sell at the show for just $800! That’s $400 off!! If you are in need of a new trolling motor, you have to get to the show and check these out. Plus, you’ll get to meet one of the true “nice guys” in fishing.
As you can see, the Fred Hall Show has something for everybody. And, I haven’t even begun to scratch the surface of what you’ll see, experience, and have the chance to buy at the show. If you are anywhere near Long Beach, California between now and Sunday, run, drive, paraglide, whatever to the show. If you love the outdoors, you’ll love the show.