For me personally, there are a handful of exciting days that I look forward to every year as a bowhunter. Obviously, opening day is one of those days. The first cold snap that triggers daytime buck movement coinciding with rubs and scrapes appearing in the woods is another. However, there is one day that I am very privileged and excited to experience every year, and that is the first day of the annual ATA trade show.
A shot of the hundreds of bowhunters at the Outtech party last night at the 2012 ATA Show.
Josh Kelley performing at the 2012 Outtech Party!
The show technically kicked off last night with the Outtech party. Hundreds of industry dealers, writers, television personalities and bowhunting insiders flooded the convention center to enjoy some sneak peeks at new products, a live performance by country music star Josh Kelley, and of course to watch the Alabama Crimson Tide roll the LSU Tigers in the BCS National Championship game. It was a perfect way to kick off an exciting week!
Let the festivities begin!
The floor rooms opened this morning at 8:30 and as soon as the gates opened, it didn’t take long for the industry business to begin taking place on the show room floor. It’s pretty exciting to walk the floor and look left and right see the business being conducted. You could feel the energy as business was being conducted left and right, new products were being revealed and hunting celebrities smiled candidly for photos and autographs.
Perhaps what I look forward to most about the ATA Show is catching up and socializing with my hunting buddies that I may only see once or twice a year. I know, I know I should probably be working and not socializing but hey, swapping hunting stories is just plain fun. I was fortunate enough to catch up and chat with my pal Jason McKee of New Archery Products and Frank Archey of Lone Wolf Portable Treestands. It’s always good to catch up and listen to other hunter’s success stories.
I've always wanted to hunt mule deer and seeing this giant mule deer buck has only made me want to go even more. Only at ATA!
In between working and socializing, I have been able to locate a couple of products that I especially excited about for the 2012 season. The first was the 20 feet climbing ladder system from Lone Wolf Portable Treestands. I’m a big fan of Lone Wolf’s climbing sticks, and this new ladder system looks fantastic. The ladder stick system will get you 16 feet in the air in no time. I spoke with Lone Wolf President Jared Schlipf about them and he assured me you could safely (with the aid of a lineman’s belt, of course) attach the ladder system to the tree, strap it down and be safely in your stand in 5 minutes. This is a great product for the mobile hunter.
Lone Wolf President Jare Schlipf in the middle of an interview discussing the new innovative Ladder Stick System.
I was also intrigued by NAP’s new Armor Rest full capture drop-away rest. This little 5 oz. piece of engineering genius has a full rubber Armorshield on the body of the rest that stays whisper quiet in operation. Titanium arms mean less weight, but added strength. This rest promises full containment with 100% fletching clearance at any angle. You’ll definitely want to check out this new rest from NAP!
New for 2012 the NAP Armor Rest. If you're into full-containment drop away rests, then this is the rest for you.
The 2012 ATA Show is still very young, so be sure to keep checking the blogs to be the first to know about the cool new products for 2012.