Preview Mode Links will not work in preview mode

Wet Fly Swing Fly Fishing Podcast

May 24, 2024

Show Notes: 

Presented by: Yellowstone Teton Territory


Curtis Fry, co-owner of Fly Fish Food, gives us a behind-the-scenes look at the acquisition of Jimmy's All Seasons Angler and shares what sets a great fly-tying shop apart from the rest.

But that's not all. Curtis also delves into the everyday philosophy that drives their business, the importance of being prepared for your next fly shop visit, and how to navigate the choppy waters of online feedback. Whether you're a seasoned angler or just getting your feet wet, this episode is packed with valuable advice to enhance your fly fishing journey.

Episode Chapters with Curtis Fry on Jimmy's All Seasons Angler

7:29 - Curtis discusses the acquisition of Jimmy's All Seasons Angler, a renowned fly fishing shop for over 40 years. Jimmy's became well-known for its focus on fly tying, making it a staple in the community, especially during the winter Saturday demo sessions. The shop's reputation and Jimmy's desire to retire presented Curtis and his business partner, Cheech, with the opportunity to take over.

The transition occurred in June 2023, with Jimmy truly stepping back to enjoy more fishing. Curtis and Cheech focused on retaining the shop's essence while implementing significant improvements. They revamped the interior, greatly expanded the fly and fly tying selections, and introduced more brands and products.

18:34 - Curtis talks about the importance of community and relationships in the fly fishing industry. He explains that their approach includes offering high-quality, free content, such as fly-tying tutorials, to engage with the community.

21:41 - Curtis highlights the importance of immediate feedback in today's consumer-driven world, noting that poor customer service quickly becomes known, especially with more options available for consumers. He emphasizes the need for businesses to excel in customer service and social media engagement.

26:41 - We dig into the unique qualities of Jimmy's All Seasons Angler, particularly its emphasis on fly tying compared to other shops. Curtis highlights the extensive planning and analysis in selecting their product mix and managing inventory. He points out the importance of understanding consumer behavior, especially with the shift towards online shopping.

32:33 -  Curtis advises how fly fishing beginners can get started, particularly emphasizing the value of visiting local fly shops like Jimmy's. He said first understand where and how they plan to fish. He also recommends beginners familiarize themselves with the basics of the type of fishing they're interested in and then explore fly tying through resources like the fly tying tutorials on their website.

Beyond basic tutorials, Curtis mentions their "Skill Builder" series on YouTube, which delves into more specific techniques.

36:37 - Curtis mentions that even beginners who have done some basic fly tying, like zebra midges or pheasant tails, can find suitable dry flies to use during specific hatches like the beta hatch, which has been very good recently.

38:16 - The conversation shifts to comparing fishing in the Provo area with other locations such as Henry's Fork and South Fork. Curtis points out that Provo's proximity to populated areas makes it busier, but notes its walk-and-wade accessibility. However, he suggests that areas like Henry's Fork offer a wider variety of water and fewer people, appealing more to destination anglers.

40:06 - Curtis advises that newcomers to fly shops should keep an open mind, as everyone can have a bad day, and emphasizes the importance of being ready to answer questions to help shop employees provide the best guidance. He also suggests that beginners should be willing to set aside any need to appear knowledgeable, as this attitude can hinder learning and the reception of valuable advice.

42:15 - Curtis outlines the selection process for their lineup of boats, ranging from entry-level float tubes to high-end drift boats. He mentions that float tubes despite their simplicity are still very useful, especially for accessing high mountain lakes.

Curtis also shares his favorite float tube model, the slash float tube from Dave Scadden Paddlesports. This model is distinctive for using a standup paddleboard's rigid style to create a platform that sits between two pontoons, serving as the seat.

47:15 - Curtis reveals they have four "shop dogs", a 65-pound Sheepadoodle named Gwen, a jet-black Poodle named Zeppelin who is notably annoying, and an English Bulldog named Scotty. Additionally, there's Squatch, a Wirehaired Pointing Griffon, brought in by Curtis's colleague, Cheech.

48:60 - We talk about their Shop Talk Podcast. Curtis acknowledges that their podcasting efforts are the least consistent part of their projects, but they still maintain a dedicated space for it. Despite the irregular schedule, he enjoys producing it.

50:41 - Curtis advises beginners in fly fishing to take a guided trip early on, emphasizing how such an experience could significantly flatten the learning curve. He notes that while not everyone can afford it, investing in at least one guided trip can offer personalized learning opportunities, tailored to the beginner's needs.

52:40 - Curtis shares the potential expansion plans for Fly Fish Food, which has a strong presence in various locations and is considering further growth.

58:35 - Curtis recommends Stockman's Restaurant in Idaho Falls, a reputable steakhouse known for its quality beef.

Show Notes: