My "men" appear from time to time, be it at fairs, here on my site, on the Facebook page of Sportex and Climax, and/or in the Sportex catalogue.
I would like to introduce my team to you bit by bit, and also briefly tell you the little stories of how each individual came to me.
Since I can hardly get to the water myself, my teammates are my eyes, ears, test for me, initiate ideas, make suggestions for improvement, bring the pictures or films, and so on and so forth! So they have become an incredibly important part of what I do, of me!
And they are also accepted by the Ockert Group, i.e. Sportex, Climax, Tica!
What has always been important to me is that none of them have to do anything, but do it as they can, as they have time! And it is also not demanded of me that they absolutely have to fish or show this or that!
And all of them have become friends, so those who I could ask for help in the middle of the night, and they would then also come, as long as the distance is not too great! Those who know me better know that I am very careful with the term "friend"! You have many acquaintances, but only very few friends ...! And every now and then you also experience disappointments when you let someone get too close to you too quickly as a "friend"...". But I, too, am learning from experience!!!
What they all have in common: they are passionate anglers! And no forum junkies, no "Boah, it's me...", ".... I have...". No theorists! None who act as if they are now something better! In my team I don't tolerate posers, profile neurotics, self-loving types! These types ruin a lot of things and make sure that we anglers are always looked at askance!
Volker is not only the longest member of the team, he is also our "senior". But that's only in relation to his age (born 63)! Volker has been an integral part of my little team for over 10 years! He was and is our camera man, whether for moving or still pictures! In spite of his busy professional life, he takes a little time out at least twice a year and spends it on the Ebro, usually at carnival time.
carnival time, and still on the Rhone. The passionate carp angler got the "taste" for catfish fishing on the Rhine through and with me. Like the other 3 team members, he came to me via guiding tours. But Volker is an old hand, or rather a fox, at fishing from the
or "setting traps" as he likes to call it. A few years before we met, he was also on the Po, in addition to the rivers mentioned above. I didn't really need to explain or show him anything! With other "clubs", a PB list would now most likely come. To shorten it and not to bore you with any "details": Volker has caught quite a few beautiful, small, big, capital catfish, at home and abroad! Speaking of foreign countries: even the fish of the Amazon or the sturgeon in Canada were not safe from him!
safe from him ...! 😊
But what is and remains more important to us: we have spent many wonderful hours on the water, both in smaller and larger groups! And, what I must not forget, Volker was and is always there when it is possible or can be made possible, no matter whether it is guiding and dealer courses (in the past), or at trade fairs, whether small or large, or when you need him privately!
Stefan joined the team shortly after Volker.
He was also a former guiding customer, but like Volker, he also had a lot of catfish fishing experience. Countless times Stefan and his wife Ursel were on the Po and just as often on the big French rivers. Before the aforementioned catfish guiding tour, the Rhine was a blank sheet of paper for him when it came to catfish fishing. That changed from then on: the two of them spent many nights on the Palatinate section of the Rhine. We spent many wonderful hours on the water, often with Volker.
Legendary are also a couple of fishing trips here on the Rhine, which were really good in terms of size and number of catfish caught. For example: five catfish in two nights, four catfish over 2m in one week, including the beautiful coloured catfish, 3 fish in just under 120 minutes. When the going gets tough, it really gets tough!
But there have always been and still are some fishing nights without fish! Those are the nights of fiddling...!
Stefan is one of my toughest critics when it comes to my ideas, test patterns of rigs, especially bungee rigs. He was also the one who implemented the idea of the "elastic leader for catfishing" with me many years ago.
Ursel and Stefan were and are always there when they are needed, no matter whether at the many guidings or also at fairs such as the fishing fair in Karlsruhe, or even if you should need them privately.
I, we would not want to miss the two „Pfälzer“!
Kalle is known to many of you from the Ebro. His full moon tours have long since achieved cult status, booked up well in advance!
But not only catfish wince at the name "Kalle", carp, zander and perch on the Ebro reservoir are also part of his repertoire! For many years, 10 to be exact, Kalle was in Taffi's team. There is really nothing more to say about it! Many people can't even spell the words "loyalty" and/or "long affiliation" anymore...! Kalle would probably still be in the Taffi team, but since the takeover of this brand from a wholesaler, his future was too uncertain!
To put it clearly: No, I did not poach him!
You could rather say it with a bit of pathos: "What belongs together comes together..."!
Of course, Kalle will not throw away his tried and tested Ebro tackle because of this!
Little by little, Sportex rods and Climax lines will be added to Kalle's equipment, for both catfish and zander fishing. And of course the original bungee rigs .... 😊
Michael "Taffi". Since 01 January 2022 in Team JK. What can I write about someone about whom almost everything is known and written? Actually, not much, or actually nothing anymore. Except perhaps to try not to reduce his activities here to the enormous number of fish caught and guided...
And in addition to the number of capital fish, one must also mention "Taffi Tackle", the former own brand: high quality tackle for "Wallern". In this scene, it is never easy or simple to act without compromise..., but Micha and his colleague had managed it!
After the sale of the "house brand" Micha just wanted to "only" join an intact team, without the omnipresent "... and another huge fish...". BOAH what a great team we are..." attitude. In the last few months, Micha got an insight into our team through his friend Kalle (see above). And since that was exactly what he wanted, everything else was just a matter of time! Besides, I've known Micha for a few years, so there was no need for any preliminary banter or the like! I think, no I know, that he fits into the team! And so the next thoroughbred angler, guide and creative head, as well as the rest of my men, is on board!
Picture above: from left to right: Jens, Micha (Taffi), Kalle
... and last, but not least:
About me (Jens), the Team leader:
Born in 1964, angler since the age of 4, ancestors have always been anglers/professional fishermen.
"Fishing pro" now in his 22nd year (as of 2024). If you want to know more, (almost) everything is in the book... :-).
I've actually done almost all types of freshwater fishing, whether it was specking with the long, up to 11m long "head rod" in the early days (about 40 years ago), with the match rod or the self-built "heavy feeder". Or with natural baits for all local predators, as well as with artificial baits from light wobbling for trout to heavy spoons, wobbling, gaffing, popping (is that what it's called?) for catfish and, of course, targeting catfish. And a few years ago, light sea fishing for cod, plaice, flounder and sea trout.
Of all the things I've done so far, predator fishing with artificial lures and of course catfishing were and are my absolute favorites!
For the sake of completeness:
from 2003 to 2010 guide at the Strehlow fishing school (keyword: lazy technique), responsible for guiding and seminars on pikeperch and catfish on the Upper Rhine, also seminars/courses "Pikeperch“ at the port of Hamburg and tours on the Elbe (both tidal Elbe and "normal" Elbe), pikeperch seminars and guiding on the Ebro reservoir at Riba Roja d`Ebre/ Espana.
Since 2010 Consultant at Sportex and Climax, mainly for the "Catfish" sector.
Until 2015 Guidings and courses "Pikeperch", "Pike", "Catfish" in Germany and Europe.
Until 2015, I also attended numerous large, medium-sized and even small fishing fairs in German-speaking countries. From the Hanse-Boot, Boot Düsseldorf, Berlin, Aqua Fish, Angelmesse Karlsruhe to the in-house exhibition at the local dealer, everything was there. Responsible for the lecture program at some of the larger trade fairs.
In addition, numerous articles in various trade journals on the subject of catfish fishing at home.
And apart from fishing, on the side ...:
over 50 years KSC fan
a good 40 years of Judas Priest
over 40 years "Up the IRONs"
MAIDEN is my religion!