Exclusive Interview With Steve Peterson - Flyfish Europe Sales Representative for UK & Ireland
Despite being busy fishing, spending time with his son and making sure things run smoothly with Flyfish Europe, Steve Peterson somehow found time to answer some of our probing questions. He told us about the first fish he ever caught, revealed his current goals and even let us in on what great deals we can expect from Flyfish Europe this year. Name: Steve Peterson Age: 43 Location: Cheshire Job Description: Flyfish Europe sales representative for the UK and Ireland. Brands include Simms, Scientific Anglers, Scott, Waterworks Lamson, C&F, Smith Optics, Loon and DeYoung. Likes: Fly fishing, football, red wine and cooking Dislikes: Traffic jams! Describe a typical day for you. I really have two types of typical day. The first would involve an early start and typically a long drive to meet with one of our retailers. Meetings with buyers and shop managers mostly involve looking at samples of new products, but I would also be involved with things like merchandising, staff training on new products, range selection, organising shows and open days and just generally making sure everything is running smoothly. Then it’s usually another long drive to a hotel and on to another dealer the next day. So there is a lot of driving involved in my job but it’s often in the most beautiful parts of the country and, like most anglers, I just love to visit good tackle shops! When I am not on the road I will be working from my office at home. A typical office day for me will be spent on the computer answering enquiries from dealers and customers and processing orders to my head office in Norway. What age did you start fishing? I started fishing at around seven or eight with a hand line in the sea. What is your first fishing memory? My first fishing memory was on a boat trip on the Irish Sea with my dad. I was using a hand line and I can still remember the tug on the line when I got a bite. My dad said that there was nothing there but I pulled in a 3lb codling! This was my first fish and I still have the pictures. I can remember all the family came to look at it when we got home and my grandmother had it under the grill in no time! I have been obsessed with fishing ever since. What do you love most about the sport? I feel so lucky to have discovered fishing at an early age and there are so many things I love about it. I have met so many great people through fishing and it’s taken me to to many beautiful parts of the world. I have been fishing and working in fishing for so long, but it still fascinates me. You never stop learning things and I think this is the key to fishing and fly fishing in particular. Can you describe your casting style? Lazy! What is your most memorable fishing experience? I would have to say catching a 38lb salmon from the Kharlovka in Russia. He was coloured but that didn’t matter - he fought so hard and I just couldn’t believe I had a fish that size on the end of my line. Fishing in Russia was a once in a lifetime experience; unbelievable fishing, great company and helicopter rides every day. What piece of kit could you not live without? Simms G3 Guide waders. Check out this vital piece of kit here What do you still want to tick off your fishing bucket list? There are still so many things I want to do in the world of fishing, like catch a really big tarpon or a large wild brown from one of the Irish loughs, but at the moment I am trying (unsuccessfully) to get a pike on the fly from the canal which is at the bottom of my back garden. Any funny fishing tales you would like to share? There have been lots of funny fishing moments over the years, the funniest of which will never make it to print! I do believe fishing should be fun, I usually end up laughing at myself the most. Recently I was chasing bass in the surf in North Wales and I just couldn’t understand why the bass wouldn’t take my perfectly tied sandeel pattern. Eventually, I realised they were mullet! What would your perfect day consist of? A July morning on the River Bann in Northern Ireland when the Grilse run is in full swing. This is the river I grew up fishing on and I still call it home. What are you most proud of/greatest achievement? My seven year old son Will is my greatest achievement, but in fishing I guess it would be gaining my qualifications at a young age. I passed STANIC at 20 and went on to APGAI, AAPGAI Advanced, FFF CCI and then AAPGAI masters. I am also very proud of my time working at Sportfish, Hardy & Greys and now Flyfish Europe. It’s been a great privilege to work for all of those companies. Who or what inspires you? I have had the privilege of working with some great people over the years from whom I have learnt so much, and many of my fellow AAPGAI instructors have also inspired me to keep going all these years. How did you get a career start the fishing industry? I started in fisheries work at a Trout fishery called Danebridge not far from where I live now in Cheshire. The job actually started as a Fishery Management YTS scheme which involved attending Sparsholt College in Hampshire. I loved it and as well as gaining experience, I gained a City & Guilds qualification in Fishery studies. I then started to teach casting and fishing. Getting qualified as a casting instructor and working with local tackle dealers opened the doors for me into the tackle trade but it took a long time - I worked on the fishery for twelve years. Any advice for fellow anglers that would like a career in the fishing world? Firstly, be realistic, the fishing industry in the UK is very small and working in the industry is often very different from what people may think. These days no one is going to pay you a wage just because you can cast quite well or catch lots of fish, you need other skills and qualifications. You need to decide what you want to do in the industry, whether it be sales, marketing, tackle design or instruction. Try to gain experience and the best qualifications. You will need to be prepared to move to where the work is and also be aware that working in the industry will have an effect on your fishing as you will probably have less time to fish. What is the big thing for your brand this year? The Simms wader and clothing range is always a big thing for us but in addition the new Lamson Liquid and Remix reels and the new Scientific Anglers Frequency series fly lines offer exceptional quality and value for money. Check out the Lamson Liquid Fly Reels and Remix Fly Reels Take a look at our range of Scientific Anglers Frequency Fly Lines Can you give us any advice or useful tips? The best advice I can give anybody is to get out there! Go fishing and enjoy yourself.