Mid-Canada Boat Show and Hook & Bullet Show start Thursday at RBC Convention Centre


The Mid Canada Boat Show  runs Thursday March 1 – Sunday March 4 and has got over 135,000 sq ft on the 3rd floor of the RBC Convention Centre with everything you need for summer fun – the newest boats and motors, from the top manufacturers and suppliers in the industry.


The Hook & Bullet Show has taken over the entire 2nd floor. If you are a hunter or angler you will want to check this out. One ticket, two shows! Something for all.

  •  Fishing and Hunting Equipment and Supplies
  • Manitoba Wildlife Federation Member Suppliers and Clubs
  • Conservation and Sustainable Development
  • Outdoor Clothing and Gear
  • Fishing and Hunting Lodges
  • Casting and Shooting Competition
  • Education and Advice

What’s new in the Fishing Boat Industry


My boat is more than 10 years old now and it’s a constant battle keeping the carpet and vinyl clean. That’s why the fishing boat industry has gone away from providing marine grade carpeting. While it supplied a secure, non slip surface, it also retained water like a sponge, promoting mold and rotting floors. The new synthetic floors offer the same non-skid surface, yet dry in minutes. Many of the top-level fishing boats also have a hose system that allows you to wash them down immediately if you get some fish slime or blood on the floor.

Track System

I can remember all the years rigging boats, usually a new one every year when I was making television fishing shows. It would mean mounting your electronics, front and back troll motors and rod holders.

Things have certainly changed for the better. No more drilling holes for those rod holders. Most quality fishing rigs have a track system right from the factory.  Some are on top of the gunnels and others are integrated right in the design. I prefer the track system, because you can position those rod holders right where you need them the most.

Digital Dashboards

Just as the dashboard in your vehicle has moved from dials to LCDs, so too are the dashboards of boats. The newest digital touchscreen displays integrate with every system in the boat so you can control it all –engine, fish finder, GPS and more – from one or more touch screen displays. The best ones have specially-designed screens you can view from any angle, even while wearing polarized sunglasses.

Combine that with digital throttle and shift and you would think you were really in the next generation.

Stolen from the aviation industry, fly-by-wire technology replaces cables and pulleys and other moving parts, which of course brings us reliability and way smoother operation. Never mind with digital engine control you can program your boat to anchor digitally with the use of your GPS.  Wow.


How about a ventilated rod storage area? I am all over that!  Some fishing boats now come with a power fan to keep the air circulating in the rod storage area, all controlled by a timer so you don’t have to worry about it.

I can also remember the day when I changed my trailer lights over from bulbs to LED. Man, did that change things. Now almost all boats come with LED systems in place. They are fully sealed which no more shorts or burn outs caused by corrosion. You can also tune them to display different colours depending on the situation like a darker version while night fishing.

While one wouldn’t fit on my boat, bow ladders are becoming more common.  This allows you to pull into shore and get your guests out of the boat with no muss or fuss.  One final change is for those who love the versatility of a pontoon boat.  How about painted pontoons? The advantage to this is that you escape the discoloration problem when these boat sit in the water for periods of time. Painted, these pontoons maintain their good looks for years!


About Author

Don Lamont - The Complete Angler Don Lamont has been a full time professional angler for 34 years, hosting and producing the award winning “The Complete Angler” television series for fifteen of those. Don has received several awards for his commitment to public education and the future of recreational fishing in Canada. Those include a 2000 Canadian Recreational Fisheries Award for his work with Manitoba’s Urban Angling Partnership. In 2003 he received a Manitoba Tourism Award for his promotion of Manitoba and western Canada. In 2004 he was a finalist at the Tourism Industry Association of Canada National Award for Tourism Excellence, presented by The Globe and Mail. Don has been a regular fishing columnist in the Winnipeg Free Press since 1992 and is currently editor of Hooked Magazine.

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