Sunday, February 16, 2014

2014 Western Hunting and Conservation Expo

This last weekend I attended the 2014 Western Hunting and Conservation Expo!  This was the first time I have ever been to an outdoor expo and man it was an eye opener for me! With it being Valentines weekend I had my wife with me for the weekend and the way she described it was, "It's like a glamorized craft fair for men" haha I couldn't agree more!  If you haven't been to an outdoor expo you need to and this post will tell you all of the reasons I would suggest you go!

My number one reason for going would hands down be all about meeting the people behind the scenes.  As much as many of us outdoors men would love to work in the hunting industry I give extreme kudos to those who make the sacrifices during the on and off season to make sure the hunters who don't work in the industry are able to enjoy our hunting experience.  These guys at the booths are passionate about the sport of hunting but rather than spending their time in the woods like many of us, they spend their time designing new products to make our hunting experience better.  Every booth my wife and I went to, we were met by amazing people who were genuinely interested in helping us find what we were looking for at the expo!
western hunting and conservation expo 200 trophy hunt application ...
One of the booths I spent well over an hour at was the Hawke Sports Optics booth talking to Trent about the different products.  After talking about scopes and binoculars we both started talking about our families, hunting experiences, pet-peeves, and anything else that we could think about.  I'm just speaking from my point of view but when a person is willing to spend that type of time talking to you about anything and everything, that's the type of person I want to do business with!  Not to mention the price on their products were hands down the best deal in the whole expo for optics! I spent a good portion of the day showing my wife the different optics at the expo, comparing quality and price... Quoting her again, "Why would anyone buy one of those other expensive optics just to have some fancy name on it!"  I tried to help my wife understand that those big brand names are similar to those in vehicles, clothing, shoes, etc. and you are buying the name more than anything... Back to the expo!
Another booth I spent a lot of time at was the 46 Rail booth! I am completely honest with you when I say that this booth was so good I literally took my clothes off... (in a dressing room of course!)  I had seen this brand of camo on Twitter and other social media outlets and was VERY curious about them.  They have a completely different design that no other camo company has even come close to as well as a very unique fit.  I won't lie the first time I saw these I thought they were weird and you couldn't pay me enough to be seen wearing them around.  When I showed up at the booth and saw them in real life I was a lot more open minded about them.... Then I tried them on.... WOW! Honestly I have never tried on a more comfortable pair of pants (let a lone camo pants) ever in my life!  The only way to describe them is that you don't even feel like you are wearing pants... I know that sounds a little odd but these pants were so comfortable I would choose to where them over my sweat pants at night if I could! 
46Rail camo pants, shirt, gloves, and bino case!

If I hadn't gone to the expo I don't think I would ever given 46 Rail another thought other than, "oh yeah those are the funny pants guys".  Now that I have seen them in person, worn them around, and talk to the guys in the booth about their functionality... I will say that some day I am going to own me a pair of these pants!

I could talk on and on about what I loved about the expo and I am sure I will be writing more about some of the products I saw there but I just want to leave you by saying if you haven't been to an expo like this or something similar to it, you need to go! These shows are places you can get amazing deals on amazing products as well as meet some outstanding people!  The expo is also a great place where you can find out about products you have never heard of and be ahead of the game (literally in some cases) when it comes to being successful on your next hunt!

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