Well it’s been a week since IFTD finished and I am still buzzing off the fact that I got to attend this amazing event. For those who don’t know what IFTD is well it’s the International fly tackle dealer or in short, the who’s, who of the fly-fishing world and everyone in-between. This year was a big gamble for AFTA as they broke away from the ICAST show and became a standalone fly fishing event in Denver Colorado. And in my opinion they absolutely crushed it in every way.
Now it is fair to say that I was an IFTD Rookie so knowing or comparing past shows to this one personally would be something I can’t relate to. However with that said the numbers don’t lie it’s been the biggest attendance year to date, more events and more new product entries were entered for the famed awards. Still don’t take my word for it the rumors amongst the venders on the floor and the many new friends I met were all saying the same thing about how this year’s IFTD was Epic.
What made it so Epic was again in my opinion it’s the highlights that this show offered both the new highlights and old ones as well. Some of the biggest talk was about how the entire show was banning single use plastic in their efforts to kick plastic, at first I was a little unsure of how this would play out but all I can say is that this was smooth, easy and well accomplished. Something I hope that AAFTA continues in show years to come.
Other Highlights were the new Podcast and social media for your business seminars launched this year. I had the pleasure to meet the Barbless Podcast crew (Chad and Nick) theses guy put on a great presentation in a new space within the industry. Not to mention they are super funny guys.
As suspected the casting pond was huge hit, and mostly always busy and full of super fishy peeps testing out what’s new for 2020 and of course those rods that are still favorites. No surprise that the Scott fly rods booth was beside the pond and with the new Scott Sector ready to go everyone was trying it.
Iron fly competition was successful as well, the feathers and fur were flying and the crowds gathered around in the masses to watch their favorite tier create something out of this world. In the when it was done Cheech Pierce was the champ of this year’s Iron fly.
Of course there would not be an IFTD without awards given in many categories. But the main ones waders was Simms new G4 series of waders, best fly lines was SA new amplitude lines , reels were ross, san Miguel and Abels new Vaya, the best salt water rod and best of show was Scott Sector and the best freshwater rod was the Sage LL trout. Many many awards were given in many categories naturally of course.
The after party’s held by both Simms fishing and Fishpond were so cool on their behalf, it was great to unwind with some music on rooftop in downtown Denver with the Simms Crew and then head over to the fishpond party and see the howler bros crank out some live tunes. The parties were in my opinion a much-needed brake and well planned on the second day evening was perfect.
As an IFTD rookie this was one show that I didn’t want to miss and truly if you’re a brand, organization, person with a product or even just a super fishy person I suggest you get in touch with the great crew at AFFTA and see what you can do to get yourself to this show for 2020. For even more info and highlights from my IFTD experience please check out the various platforms that the Fly-Fishing Insider Podcast is present on as were showing YouTube Videos, podcast recap and blogs all on the Fly-Fishing Insider.