A peek at the world's largest fishing-tackle trade show, as seen through the wide-angle perspective of a GoPro Hero4
July 23, 2015
WORLD’S BIGGEST TACKLE SHOW
ICAST. Never mind what the letters stand for; this annual show stands for the world’s largest fishing-tackle trade show. As a trade show, it’s off limits to the general public. While the most kid-in-a-candy-store fun is being there, even to see it is pretty cool for most anglers. So I walked around the mid-July event taking photos with my little GoPro Hero4 Silver with its unique super-wide-angle perspective to share with SF’s audience of enthusiasts. The result is this 30-photo gallery and another like it.
This photo shows a tiny piece of ICAST in the Orange County (Florida) Convention Center and offers some idea of the crowd on the opening day.
REEL IN PIECES
At the Penn Fishing Tackle booth, a new Clash (which won the show award for Best New Saltwater Spinning Reel) is shown in cutaway halves with its gears and other parts on the glass below.
THE AGE OF 3D
Lowrance and Simrad have refined 3D sonar still further with StructureScan 3D, as Navico marketing director Gordon Sprouse tells an overflow crowd.
RADAR TRACKING FAR AND NEAR
As I stood listening to Gordon Sprouse announce the new Structure Scan 3D sonar, I glanced down to see this display from a Simrad radar’s open-array antenna, spinning just above — and quickly realized that all the blobs it had picked up were the people around me! If one walked in or out of the exhibit, I could track him/her on this screen.
Many lure makers have cool displays at ICAST, and Danish manufacturer Westin has some the best each year.
Okuma‘s rods don’t really come with a bend — for that you have to buy one and hook a fish (or, okay, snag the bottom). These rods are simply distorted by the GoPro’s super-wide lens.
MYSTERIOUS MAN IN BLACK
Who is the Mysterious Man in Black, stalking the convention center during ICAST? The silent sentinel is a Frogg Toggs mannequin, in low-light silhouette.
THE NEW PRODUCTS SHOWCASE
ICAST’s New Products Showcase allows manufacturers to display their wares during the show. Here, on opening night, a part of the huge showcase is visible, as invited guests (mostly media) look at all the product by category — rods, reels, lines, lures, apparel, sunglasses, accessories and more — and vote for best new products.
All gear in the New Products Showcase is displayed with a card from the manufacturer naming the product and category with a product description and MSRP. This is a small section of the Hard Baits category.
HOBIE GOES ORANGE
But only this once — a 500-kayak limited edition Outback, characterized not only by its color but lots of cool functional and aesthetic add-ons.
HOTTIE IN A COOLER
SF editor Chris Woodward chills out in a massive Yeti Tundra 210 cooler. No one seems to be noticing but, hey: It was happy hour by then. (Photo by Sam Hudson)
SUPER STICK BAITS
A variety of hand-turned, hand-painted stick baits from Hanta. Retailing for $55-$80, these lures are made from kiln-dried mahogany (see three varnished but unpainted, back) and come through-wired with Owner barbless hooks.
THE WORLD BENEATH YOUR HULL
With CHIRP technology, Garmin‘s DownVü sonars offer amazing image resolution/clarity and target separation as seen in this demo.
SEALED TIGHT AND SUPER LIGHT
Newest Van Staals are lighter than ever, with sealed, waterproof construction, machined from aircraft-grade aluminum with a solid titanium spool shaft.
THE FACE IN THE MIRROR
SF Pacific editor Jim Hendricks checks himself out wearing a pair of Costa‘s Cortez sunglasses as Liza Jones (right) talks with SF editor Chris Woodward about new Costa designs.
A striking mahi pattern catches the eye on a table at the AFTCO booth. It’s the brand new Guy Harvey Dorado Performance T-Shirt. The series includes other vibrant patterns such as redfish and sailfish.
WHAT $900 BUYS
It buys a very smooth, powerful spinning reel, as it should. Daiwa‘s Saltigas are made of a rigid, strong, proprietary material and they’re Magsealed. For more on that, see the next photo.
Daiwa offers a bit of visual proof that it’s bearings, sealed with magnetically charged oil, keeps saltwater out. In the adjacent case, the water in the plastic tube quickly drains, running into and out of a similar reel without sealed bearings.
THAT’S A WRAP!
The boys from Huk fishing and hunting apparel, with a large booth inside the convention center, clearly walk the walk as evidenced by this 37 Freeman with its fab wrap by artist K.C. Scott. In the background: Under Armour’s 39 Yellowfin.
SHIMANO: SO CONVENTIONAL
A selection of levelwind reels for offshore and inshore from Shimano.
MOUTHFUL FOR A MONSTER
This keeper-sized jointed trout from Savage Lures is a 16-inch swimbait designed for big musky and pike, but I suspect there are plenty of saltwater predators that would jump all over it.
ADRIFT IN AN ACRYLIC SEA
Italian-based Seaspin Lures shows off some of its colorful Mommotti minnow lures.
STAND OF STAND-UPS
Miami-based Profile Fishing Tackle displays some gorgeous heavy stand-up rods, ranging from 30- to 130-pound class.
NOTHING TO HIDE
Truth Reels, made in the U.S.A., shows off it’s T6 aluminum frame and 316 stainless-steel pinion and main gears, with boca ceramic bearings and carbon fiber drag washer. The SM Star Mag retails for $349.
Many apparel manufacturers at ICAST displayed some of the sharpest-looking technical fishing shirts ever. This roosterfish design from Bluefin USA is a case in point.
A look at Old Town’s Predator XL kayak (which won best new product overall in the ICAST show in 2014) which offers a module equipped with Minn-Kota motor for hands-free fishing.
SHINY SPEED JIGS
Brightly painted metal jigs occupy a plexiglass shelf at the booth with Japanese manufacturer Ocean Mark‘s lures and reels.
GET A GRIP
Who said rod grips have to be boring? Winn rod grips are not only colorful but high-tech, using a polymer grip material that offers a sure hold even in cold and wet conditions
More cool lures from Seaspin, including (at center) three large Ketc skipping lures, similar to the venerable Roberts Ranger but with ridges.