As some of you will know, it's taken some time for me to get back on the bank, after a few health issues, I was determined that this would be the year. I got my licence, but illness put it on hold again. Then the death of my brother, and part-time angling companion, made me realise that time is not on my side, so he'd given me the kick up the backside I needed. It's taken this long to get myself together, and this week was chosen for two reasons, one, there has been some rain, and two, the kids are back at school. I sorted my gear, and made a list of the terminal tackle I needed. So far, so good, or so I thought. I knew my local tackle shop had closed, but according to the internet, there were a few still on the go. A round trip of some 30 miles, and a full afternoon, showed that four tackle shops that were on the 'net as still trading, had closed. I found one about 4 miles away, and went. I wanted some stick, and avon, type floats, a few hooks to nylon, a few spools of Bayer perlon for the float, and maxima, for the leger. When I asked for the bayer, I go told, "there's a few spools in a box over there", I looked and it was all 2.1bs, and 1.1bs, I picked some of the former for hook lengths. The maxima I wanted in 4 & 6lb, he only had 4lb. The hooks, out of two full racks, I found just two packets of barbed to nylon, in the sizes I wanted, and with the right bs hook length, ( I prefer squashed barbed over barbless). He had just two trotting floats in the pots, one wire stemmed avon, and a lignum vitae stick. Every other float, was a pole float, or a carp bagging type. Just about all the hooks were barbless, because "that's what's allowed on commercials". I've asked around, and found a couple of shops over the other side of town, so I will be calling there on my way tomorrow. The stretch of the Wharfe I'm going on, is day ticket, and one of the shops I'll be calling in, used to sell tickets. I rang the shop 5 times today, just to check, and let it ring until an 'answering machine' told me to call back later, as it couldn't take messages!
Now, I realise that I've been 'out of the loop' for a while, but of the few tackle shops left, is this the norm', or have I been unlucky? Tackle shops used to be friendly places, plenty of banter, and the occasional cuppa. You spent so much time talking to the staff, that you came out with three times the amount of stuff you went in for.
I'm not one for shopping on the net, so I'll have to just keep looking, surely there must be at least one decent shop within a reasonable distance.