His Passion for the Water Encompasses Both Hunting, and Fishing.
At the recent American Sportfishing Association’s ICAST show in Orlando Florida, I met a man named Bill Lowen. Bill is 39, a family man with two young kids and he fishes the Bassmaster Elite Series. For me that definitely makes him an authority on bass fishing. I checked out his career statistics and he is without a question, a darn good Bass fisherman. ICAST being a fishing show we talked about fishing for a while but both perked up considerably when the topic of hunting came up – specifically waterfowl hunting.
Like me, Bill grew up and lives near a river, in his case the Ohio, and also like me, he learned to love duck and goose hunting at a very early age. After just a few minutes of talking I could see Bill had spent a lot of time in the waterfowl blind. As we talked about our upcoming hunting plans I took a look at his fishing jersey and noticed both the Buck Knives and Flambeau Outdoors logos displayed prominently on the front. I asked him why, I had always thought of Buck and Flambeau as more along the lines of hunting related companies, Bill smiled and said “They are the perfect marketing partners for me.”
Bill started working with Buck several years ago and Flambeau soon afterward. Last year they introduced a product called the Splizzors at ICAST. I tried them out cutting some braided line Bill had on hand and I was really impressed. Buck had manufactured some kitchen shears in the past but Lowen had them add needle-nose pliers to the ends and they beefed the tool up to cut heavy lines. I really liked the fact that they are 100% American-made, due to this fact, it takes Buck a little longer to produce them. I was really impressed with how well worked, and as soon as I can get my hands on a pair they’ll very likely replace several tools in my kayak.
“They cut decoy cord well too!” Lowen said as we made our way over to the Flambeau booth. Like me, you might know Flambeau more for their waterfowl decoys, calls and hunting gear but as I learned, they also produce tackle storage for just about every need a fisherman could have. I did some research online, and if you shop at the larger hunting and fishing chains, you will see a really huge line of fishing products from Flambeau.
Bill walked me over to the marine dry boxes and the Ultimate Waterproof Tuff ‘Tainers (their name for the clear plastic utility box). The marine dry box was Bill’s favorite for storing line and miscellaneous items in his boat, and the Tuff ‘Tainer is his all-around favorite product Flambeau makes.
“Not only is it sturdy and 100% waterproof but it also has Zerust, a really innovative product only available from Flambeau,” Lowen stated. Zerust is in the little blue dividers that come in Flambeau boxes and is also available for purchase in a tab form. The product creates a vapor in the enclosed boxes that eliminates rust from forming and it keeps any existing rust from spreading to other lures and hooks.
I eagerly took some samples home and will be ordering some of those Zerust tabs for the rest of my storage boxes, gun cases, and the like. Rust is a killer and with cost of the lures and hooks I like to use, it really makes good sense to add them to all of my storage containers.
Looking back on my time with Bill it struck me that he’s really zeroed in on something very smart. I recently read a statistic that stated 80% of hunters also fish and over 50% of fishermen also hunt. Buck Knives and Flambeau are certainly reaping the rewards of having a guy like Lowen representing them. I called Bill for some follow up questions and he was leaving a Bass Pro Shops Fall Hunting Classic in Pennsylvania.
“Now that September is here about half of the people wanted to talk about hunting but we talked a whole lot about fishing too,” Bill said. “Talking about either one makes me just as happy so weekends like that don’t feel like work at all.”
Any way you want to slice it, store it or call it Bill Lowen is one heck of knowledgeable guy and I would happily trade jobs with him.
Photos Courtesy of Bill Lowen