Shows abound for those angling to get rid of the mid-winter blahs

OUTDOORS

January 17, 1993|By PETER BAKER

The weather is dreary, duck season has ended, Canada goose season ends Wednesday and it probably will be four or five or more weeks before the yellow perch begin to run in the tidal creeks.

Over the next two weekends, however, there are two opportunities to lighten the malaise of mid-winter -- the Mid-Atlantic Hunting and Fishing Show and the Fly Fishing Show.

The Mid-Atlantic Hunting and Fishing Show slipped into town for the first time last winter and drew close to capacity crowds at the Maryland State Fairgrounds in Timonium. This year's show, which will run Friday through Sunday, has been expanded and includes hourly seminars on many aspects of outdoor sports.

The Mid-Atlantic show has drawn hundreds of exhibitors from Maryland, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Virginia, West Virginia, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Maine, North Carolina, Florida, Wisconsin, Michigan, Colorado, Montana and the eastern provinces of Canada.

Hunting exhibitors include lodges and guide services, outfitters, taxidermists and vendors of bows, guns, knives, accessories and clothing. Interested in a mule deer hunt out west? You probably will be able to arrange one at the show.

Fishing exhibitors include guides and charter operations, boat dealers and vendors of tackle, clothing and accessories for ocean, bay, Great Lakes and other freshwater fishing. Want to fish for mako shark off Ocean City or big lake trout up north? You can book such a trip at the show.

Speakers at the hourly seminars include Claude Bain, director of the Virginia Salt Water Tournaments, Eric Burnley, former editor of The Fisherman, Gary Diamond, a well-known fishing writer and accomplished fisherman and Jim Gilford of Frederick, an expert fly fisher.

Seminar topics will include, striped-bass fishing, fly casting, fly tying, light tackle saltwater fishing, surf fishing, fishing for sea trout on the bay and along the Atlantic coast, shark fishing, fishing Alke Ontario, whitetail deer hunting, turkey hunting and calling, hunting dog demonstrations and muzzle loading.

Hours for the show are 1 p.m. to 10 p.m. om Friday, 9 a.m. to 9 Saturday and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday. Admission is $6 for adults, $3 for ages 10 to 14 and those under 10 will be admitted free when accompanied by a parent.

The following week, Jan. 29, 30, and 31, presents a fine opportunity for fly fishermen to increase their knowledge of the sport and to update their equipment from the aisles of The Fly Fishing Show at the Garden State Exhibit Center is Somerset, N.J.

New Jersey may seem a bit of a trek for a fishing show, but this one arguably is the best around for fly fishermen, offering general and semi-private instruction in fly casting, fly tying and fishing skills in addition to free hourly seminars given by acknowledged experts in their fields.

Among the free seminars are Bob Clouser (Fly Fishing Smorgasbord), Steve Rajeff (fly casting demonstration), Lefty Kreh (fly casting demonstrations and Fly Fishing Australia and -- New Guinea), Harry Murray (Fly Fishing for Smallmouths and Fly Fishing Small Streams), Ed Jaworowski (The Changing Face of Saltwater Fly Fishing), George Harbey and Charles Meck (Important Fly Fishing Techniques), Gary Borger (Nymphing and Trout in Still Waters) and Leon Chandler (Fly Fishing Experiences Worldwide).

The show includes a fly tyer's aisle, where 28 of the best fly tyers will be stationed at different times to pass along their expertise. Trout Unlimited also will be giving free fly-tying lessons and will conduct the New Jersey State Fly Tying Championship.

The exhibit center is located at the intersection of I-287 and Davidson Avenue in Somerset, and specific directions are available by calling the center at (908) 469-4000.

Show hours are 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Friday, 9 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. on Saturday and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday. Admission on Friday is $5. The cost for Saturday or Sunday is $10. Admission for children under 12 is $2.

Special classes are limited and should be arranged in advance. For more information, call 1 (800) 848-1020.

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