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I've seen a well established tackle shop on this side of the pond closing. It was well established and reasonable in an online context. It seems the owner reckons less anglers these days. What would be the perception on that side of the pond? Are anglers numbers in decline?
 

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I really don't know what the numbers look like for the sport - gaining or losing participants. If anyone has that data, I'd like to see it. Certainly there was a big bump from the "River Runs Through It" movie and with that an even bigger bump in women taking up the sport. Gals trying to convince me that it wasn't BP's chiseled good looks that had them running for the fly shops... priceless. :D

I suspect that spike has started to dwindle and total numbers are falling. Combine that with the convenience of on-line shopping and fly shops, like nearly all brick and mortar stores, are having a challenge staying open.
 
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I've seen a well established tackle shop on this side of the pond closing. It was well established and reasonable in an online context. It seems the owner reckons less anglers these days. What would be the perception on that side of the pond? Are anglers numbers in decline?
after last years salmon season & the river fishing restrictions, It pretty obvious the was a lot less sport fishing going on other than Stillwater !
 

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I don't know anyone that would rather buy their gear at a big box store or on-line. I don't think that kind of competition is a problem. Usually the closures are due to other factors.
If you are a beginner, you need the fly shops advice to avoid buying a lot of gear that just doesn't work. If you are experienced, you like and handle it before you buy. The local shop will always be my first choice when making a purchase.
 

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Up here on Vancouver Island all the stores right now are going through a slow spell. Talking to a sales rep for the biggest wholesaler of tackle in western Canada and he said all the retailers are hurting. Most due to the lousy weather we have had. Not many are going out fishing and this time of year is generally always slow. Add to that that a lot of people now shop on-line, it makes it tough. The store I tie a bit for does a lot of their business on-line and they deal with customers from all over North America. It's tough for small stores to keep ahead of the big box dealers. I think there's a lot of things that go against you in the business.
 

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Buenos Hatches Ese
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I wouldn't guess the number of fly anglers is the problem, but is there data available on that? Online vendors are the anti-poon for small retail shops. There is going to be an indefinite uphill battle for those businesses in this industry and many others too. What about the number of fly shops, is that factor? How many more shops are there now than 30 years ago??
 

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Pat,

I still see a lot of fly fishers when I fish Montana but we have lost a number of quality fly shops here in the past 10 or so years. I live in Washington state where you are usually dealing with about a 10% sales tax. Online sellers usually offer free shipping and in many cases, no sales tax. The sad thing is that many guys will go to a local shop and try out a rod or waders and then buy them online to save the sales tax. I'm one of the support your local shop crowd because I don't want to see any more close. I know quite a few shop owners and they're friends and I realize the value of being able to go in and pick up what you need when you need it. At the same time, I will buy from a couple of online shops where I know the owners out of state, but those are really brick and mortar shops with an online presence if they have something different or on a huge sale, like an inventory reduction. And I like the atmosphere of the local shops.
 

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A lot of manufacturers drop ship for the stores that they supply. You order an Echo, Redington or an Orvis item from the website of your favorite shop and the shop orders the item from their supplier and they ship it free to customer and bill the store for the wholesale cost. Order Redington waders from a store anywhere and chances are they'll be shipped from Redington at Bainbridge Island.
 

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I really don't know what the numbers look like for the sport - gaining or losing participants. If anyone has that data, I'd like to see it. Certainly there was a big bump from the "River Runs Through It" movie and with that an even bigger bump in women taking up the sport. Gals trying to convince me that it wasn't BP's chiseled good looks that had them running for the fly shops... priceless.
 

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Dammit, how come i can edit but i can't delete and start over?
Anyway i was trying to add to freestoneangler's quote but accidentally included my own message in the quote. then i lost what i was posting.
 

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livin' the dream
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Dammit, how come i can edit but i can't delete and start over?
Anyway i was trying to add to freestoneangler's quote but accidentally included my own message in the quote. then i lost what i was posting.
Well, us dudes always get it right the first time.

Sometimes the second, maybe the third, but always the last time and once in a while the second do-over.
 

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I really don't know what the numbers look like for the sport - gaining or losing participants. If anyone has that data, I'd like to see it. Certainly there was a big bump from the "River Runs Through It" movie and with that an even bigger bump in women taking up the sport. Gals trying to convince me that it wasn't BP's chiseled good looks that had them running for the fly shops... priceless. :D

I suspect that spike has started to dwindle and total numbers are falling. Combine that with the convenience of on-line shopping and fly shops, like nearly all brick and mortar stores, are having a challenge staying open.
1992, 25 years, if that got them in and they are still in then it passes the test if time.

I would not be bummed if the spey fishing fad for steelhead thing fizzled out.
Agree, fewer means less pressure. Dating back at least to the mid-1800s, this one also passes the test of time.
 

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If there is a diminishing number of fly anglers the anglers who are still in the sport are fishing 10 times as much.

I cannot tell you much about the spending habits of others but i can twll you that i spend next to nothing on fly fishing.
First of all i don't need much anymore and secondly there isn't much I want. New stuff isn't any better than old stuff so what's the point?
Lastly I cannot afford to buy much.
Prices and taxes are just to high for me even with generous industry discounts.
 
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