So it was a pleasant drive up the A11 to Norwich this Sunday, I was heading for the Norfolk Showground, and The British Carp & Angling Show.
Meeting one of the organisers soon after I arrived it was clear they were a little upset that some of the big names had decided not to come along this year, but this was countered with the fact that crowd numbers had been very good for both days.
And as I started to work my way around and chat to some of the exhibitors, most seemed happy with the turn out, especially as people seemed to be buying!
So I'm not sure who really missed out in the end, us or the exhibitors?
Well I'll do my usual bit now and mention some of the latest, or newer items that were on show.
My first port of call was to the lads on the Advanced Technology Tackle stand with their array of compact alarms and receivers.
Mainly showing off their usual range of products, they did have a couple of new items, the first one being a new cover for the super little 'iw' alarms.
The cover is a neat snug fit and will help protect your alarm when it's chucked in your tackle bag, but the clever bit is the little device sown into the inside that actually switches off your alarm as you pop it away… nice.
The next was a pouch to put your receiver into, and its little trick was that it floats, so if you're fish spotting and drop your receiver in the water it will just bob about on the surface, and not disappear with a splash, closely followed by the sound of someone sobbing!
Probably the biggest stand was that of Nash Tackle.
With loads of their gear displayed from bed chairs to bivvys, there was plenty to look at, and I did notice on their bait section there was the new Instant Action range of boilies and accompanying products that I reported on in my bait/tackle section last week.
I had a good sniff of the Coconut Creme and Tandoori Spice boilies, and they're great flavours, in fact the whole range was, but I can think of a couple of places to try those ones!
But on with the show, and Norwich based tackle shop owners Angling Direct had a large selection of their carp gear available and were offering 15% discount at the show, plus even more for multiple purchases.
The tackle dealers also have outlets at Waltham Cross, Rayleigh, Chelmsford, Suffolk, Wroxham, Ashford, and Sittingbourne.
Right, with clubs and venue owners getting ever more particular about what type of baits gets spodded, spombed, catapulted, or just lobbed into their waters, it was interesting to chat to the boys on the Munch Baits stand.
Their ethos seems to be to help anglers put more fish on the bank, obviously, but to also benefit the fish along the way. Working with a group of animal nutritionists they produce bait that contains only natural ingredients to give a blend of vitamins, minerals, and amino acids which they claim aids wound healing and boosts the fishes immune system, which all sounds very good!
This family run business is fully confident of the ingredients they put into their bait and actually list them, along with the nutritional value, on the back of their packaging.
New for the show was their dried product range, bloodworm, daphnia and krill which can be added to a stick mix, or rehydrated for using in groundbait or method mixes, think I'll be having some of that!
So with Angling Technics, Rig Marole, Taska, Carp4u, Eclipse Baits, Baitzone and the Pike Anglers Club all worth a look, I was happy enough on my drive back to Essex!
For more tackle info on the companies mentioned, here's some handy links: