Happy February all you fishy folk, I hope you all had an incredible 2018 and are excited for a brand new fishing season in the coming months. Recently, I was invited to visit Fishpond’s headquarters here in Denver, Colorado. I was fortunate enough to spend a couple hours talking with Fishpond’s staff about their products, philosophy, design process and of course—Fishing!
There is no denying it, I am a huge fan of Fishpond products. I have written some thoughts in previous blogs on Fishpond’s Encampment Lumbar Pack and the San Juan Sling Pack. Their Arroyo pack was my first waist pack and I have Fishpond stickers all over my gear. This is for good reason. Fishpond has designed incredible products since their inception in 2000 and have continued to deliver a fresh take on industry staples products like packs and bags. To be welcomed into their offices and warehouse was an honor and I’m eager to dive into some of the details that make Fishpond an incredibly unique company.
Fishpond began in 2000 through the efforts of John Le Coq and grew through his dedicated passions to design, sustainability and fly fishing. John, a former co-founder of Case Logic, integrated his design skills within a fabric that would later become known as Fishpond. The company started out small, producing aluminum tippet dispensers and the industry-first drop-down fly benches in their Blue River waist pack. Since then, Fishpond has continued to set a pace as a dynamic and collaborative company. Their yearly releases have provided products which often win industry awards for design and innovation.
Fishpond takes design very seriously, and their products reflect their dedication to setting trends and providing excellency for the world. Cyclepond fabrics are recycled fabrics woven from fishing nets and incorporated into many Fishpond products. During my interview with Johnny, he mentioned new sustainability goals and recycling efforts to reduce the company’s footprint and assist in conserving our natural resources. Initiatives like Cyclepond are complimented by their BCorp certification and conservation affiliation with organizations like Trout Unlimited and Protect Our Winters. As someone who spent years learning about global sustainability, I sincerely appreciate Fishpond’s dedication to conservation and resiliency.
The design process that goes into every Fishpond product is extensive, collaborative and incredibly unique. Thanks to the brilliant minds at work, each product goes through revision after revision in close collaboration with material suppliers until the products are dialed into perfection. This is a part of the reason Fishpond products have an outstanding warranty; it takes a lot to push their products over the edge. The 2019 line of products from the company show that they are dedicated to providing the excellence we’ve come to expect. The new Quikshot Rod Holder is a clip-on rod holder that is easy to use and provides immense help for moments like changing your fly or grabbing another river soda. The West Bank Wading Belt is a simple yet well-designed product that provides a net holder and rail system which holds many of Fishponds current products- even the flagship Blue River Waist Pack. However, their new Switchback Wading Belt System has combined the essence of Fishpond design and modularity into a sleek pack/belt system which can be customized again and again (I was fortunate enough to receive a Switchback from Fishpond, stay posted for my official review later this spring).
As I sat with Johnny and discussed Fishpond, I realized that the company isn’t simply trying to win over consumers; they are dedicated to the love and sport of fly fishing. The staff frequently enjoy days of fishing, storytelling and reminiscing on previous trips. Fly fishing truly is the backbone of the company. Sustainability and conservation are top priorities. Providing outstanding products is what comes from appreciation for natural spaces and fly fishing. Fishpond marries their principles in such a way that their brand is more so a lifestyle than a logo. Fishpond is the catalyst between great fly fishing products and great moments in places we love.