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oakbeachinn

Tampa Bass Pro

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Went for the first time Monday, not impressed at all. The fishing dept. had allot of empty peg hooks and empty shelves. The same with the rod racks, No Daiwa reels and not a very good selection of other reels. Looked like they were getting out of the fishing business, I know they aren't. Did they not ever get the stuff in, or could they have sold it all? Was not worth the trip there, pretty disappointing. 

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They are probably just shifting things around after the holidays. I was there last week and it seemed pretty well stocked. The only thing different I noticed from the first time I went was that they moved all the boats that were in front of the restrooms.

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Normally their stores are very well stocked and fairly well staffed. It depends a lot on location and I have not yet visited the local shop. We have experience with openings and the people behind the scenes of getting the locations and the stores opened are really wonderful. I imagine the management personnel and the floor people differ at every store though. It's like Popeye's chicken. Some are gourmet capitals and others crime scenes :)

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OakbeachInn, try the locally owned shops.  Two of my favorites are Tampa Fishing Outfitters and the two sister stores, Tarpon Fishing Outfitters and St. Petersburg Fishing Outfitters.

 

I fish with Diawa Reels, (no I'm not sponsored).  4 inshore Spinning, 2 off shore spinning and my two new casting reels for bass.  All purchased at Tampa Fishing Outfitters.  And as an added PLUS, the staff knows the products they sell and can show you the differences between products.

 

Also love Bill Jacksons, but they have a little less inventory.

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because it's run by bean counters and not ppl who fish. I buy my shorts there and that's about the extent of it. southeastern or tfo has everything I need as far as tackle.

btw I was told bps will not carry daiwa reels anymore.

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The only reason to go to BPS is, if no other place has what you want, you might find it there. They have "lots of stuff" but prices are full retail so I prefer smaller shops closer to me. 

Ran into a shop in Homestead called Don's Bait and Tackle on US 1. Good live bait prices, and good ice prices. Had fly fishing equipment, trailer parts and just a lot of good stuff.

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Don't get me wrong here guys and gals, I shop the local independents whenever possible, but I gotta say it's curious how BPS is so soundly criticized. Johnny Morris started his business after many of the local shops had been in business for many years. Somehow he turned it into an empire and all I see here is criticism. I just wish that I had been remotely as successful as he has been. You can call him a bean counter all you want but he was one of the first guys on the BASS circuit and started the thing because he felt fishermen should have a wider variety of items available. Besides, the competition makes everybody stronger.

 

I understand why everybody doesn't care for BPS, and I wish all the best to the local shops, but come on,let's give credit where credit is due.

 

And no I'm not on the BPS bandwagon, I just admire someone with the vision and foresight to create something that big from scratch. There was nothing stopping any local shop anywhere in the country, which is what he started as, from doing the same thing he did.

 

Good for him !

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I agree Dave. I remember Johnny Morris on the BASS circuit. Most fisherman don't go back that far to know about him. I fished a Ray Scott BASS tournament long long ago on Lake Keeowee in Pickens S.C. He was there along with A lot of others that went on to have good jobs in the fishing business. By the way, I fished with Bill Dance the first day, and came in 11th in that tournament.

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Andy,

 

I always wanted to fish one of those BASS tournaments "back in the day" but at the time my wife was a stay at home mom, we had three small children and I was the sole breadwinner. Just couldn't afford it.

 

Did well in small local and regional tournaments and would like to have tried my hand against the big boys. Would have probably got my butt kicked but so what. By the time I got to where I could afford it, I found Snook and overed the tournament thing.

 

I have met Bill Dance a few times. Seemed like a really nice guy. He was a force to be reckoned with in the early days. Have heard it said that fishing a tournament with him was not as fun as you might think as he was so focused on the fish that his company in the boat was not stellar. That being said, he could sure put you on the fish.

 

Would love to hear your recollections of that day !

 

Thanks,

 

Dave

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I went over to BPS the other day with freaky. Had gone by Dick's earlier that day cause I needed some 20# PP. Cost was $27.99 for 300 yds at Dick's. Pass. So we went to BPS and it was $31.99 for the same line. Every rod I looked at had the same action.....fast action. I was not impressed. Everything that I had priced over at Dick's was higher at BPS. I didn't buy anything. Got a 500 yd spool on Amazon for $43 w/ no tax and free shipping.

 

I respect Johnny Morris and what he has done, but my respect doesn't extend that far down into my pockets. Everybody was worried that BPS would put small retailers out of business. That will never happen if their prices aren't competitive.

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