Nothing fires us up more than seeing our products used by people who live their dreams every day. Case and point, a collection of fishermen called @Saltjunkiesinc. Filtrate Eyewear was lucky to link up with the Salt Junkies after the one and only Bucky Lasek turned up on a fishing trip with the group. Since then, we’ve been back and forth connecting with them as they compete in fishing tournaments across the United States and Mexico.
We had a chance to catch up with one of the leaders of Salt Junkies, Joseph Zaragoza, to get the scoop on the results of their latest fishing competition.
Interviewer: Hey Joseph, stoked to catch up with you today. So for our readers who may not know who you are, who are the Salt Junkies and how’d you guys come together?
Joseph: Well first off, the Salt Junkies is comprised of me (Joseph Zaragoza) and my two brothers, Josh and John. We’ve been fishing our whole lives. We’ve always been trying to look for ways to keep ourselves on the water as much as possible so a few years back we started to charter boats for people out of San Diego. We’d rent a boat and put trips together for friends and family and eventually, that began to grow. The funny thing about Salt Junkies is that I would always bring along a hat that I had custom made that said, “Salt Junkies” never really thinking anything of it but after every trip I had people asking me where they could get one of those hats. Obviously, that lead me to make hats for people and over time it’s grown into an awesome little brand for us.
Interviewer: That’s awesome, just doing what you love to do and suddenly people are getting excited about it.
Joseph: Yea you know, it’s all kind of evolved from exploring. The more we explore the more we find people are fans of what we’re doing. For example, early on, we headed down to Mexico for a charter out of Ensenada. We ended up having a great time so we decided to buy into a charter business and the same way the hats kind of popped off, the fishing charters started to pop off. Before we knew it we were on charters hitting spots like San Quintin, El Rosario, Magdalena (Mag) Bay and La Bocana. It’s been incredible and we’ve been having the time of our lives exploring and fishing and bringing people along for the adventures. Even better has been the fish: the marlin, el dorado, tuna, everything, it’s just been incredible.
Interviewer: That’s incredible. Entrepreneurship coming full circle and letting you build a lifestyle that turns your passion into work.
Joseph: Yea it’s been a journey. Outside of Salt Junkies we also have two other brands that we promote, Mag Bay Lodge and Mag Bay Lures. We’re really focused on making sure we can fish the rest of our lives and let our expertise as fisherman pave the way. It’s cool to see how it comes together. The three of us grew up with our dad in the construction world. It was building and working all the time. We basically took that mentality and pushed in into fishing and it’s been rad to see this stuff. You know, as kids we’d see these fishing shows, the bass fishing, Tarpe and lemon shark fishing, whatever it was on the Fishing Channel, we wanted to do it and now we’re doing it and we've been having the time of our lives ever since!
Interviewer: So tell me about this contest that you guys just finished up in. from what I hear you guys took home some prize money right?
Joseph: Yea, oh man where to start. Well, we always fish competitively. Every time we’re on a boat or see someone fishing next to us, we always are competing, even if it’s not a formal competition. When it came to our most recent tournament, we got linked up with it through a kid, Stanson, from ASU who’s dad happened to own the Marina hosting the comp down in Loreto, Baja California Sur. His son was telling us to sign up, he knew of us through the lures and our lodge and being the competitors, we are it was pretty much a no brainer to get involved.
Interviewer: Tell us about the field of competitors. How’d you guys stack up to the competition?
Joseph: Well it was a huge success. This was actually the first competition at this spot and they wanted it to be a huge success with the goal of making this an annual competition. They did a great job promoting it and ended up pulling in 28 fishing teams. Funny story, we ended up losing most of our original teammates, you know, time, scheduling, life and such. Sometimes it makes things a little tricky, but we ended up getting some incredible fisherman to join the team and it turned out great. The teams we were competing against came from all over the world. It was really cool to see how this tournament brought together people from all over to compete. We had international teams all the way down to local teams. It’s a beautiful thing to see everyone come together for these events.
Interviewer: Damn! So out of 28 teams, you guys ended up placing where?
Joseph: We placed second. We got pushed out by about 6-7 ounces. Our title fish weighed in at 28.5 lbs and they weighed in at 29 lbs so they walked away with the title by 5oz. And they barely made the weigh in too. But you know, at the end of the day we were pumped. It was tough fishing; we fought and worked our asses off for those fish. What was awesome was the way we ended up catching our biggest fish. It ended up being the last fish that we caught. Once we had it on board it was a race for us to get to the scales. As we were weighing it, the last boat came in, they had actually been fishing in our zone, and they made the cut off time by the skin of their teeth… unfortunately for us they had just that extra little luck and took the top spot overall.
Interviewer: Being the fisherman that you and your brothers are, I’m sure there’s a lot of thought that goes into your equipment, one of the things we’re proud of at Filtrate is our line of polarized sunglasses and the prices that we offer them at. How would you say our sunglasses have performed vs the competition when you’re out there on the water.
Joseph: Oh they’re amazing. They’re lightweight. Like I can wear them all day and not even feel like they’re there. The Trader One is perfect with the full wrap around. When fishing you need that because your peripheral vision needs to be accessible. You know, when your fishing, you need to see something out the corner of your eye, your best fish could be right around the corner but if you can’t see it because your frames get in the way, or the lenses aren’t polarized, you just had the fish of the day get away. As a fisherman, we don’t want to take that chance. So yea, we were pumped on the quality of Filtrate’s shades. If you need your eyes for work, you want to protect that and you know, we love that.
Interviewer: Totally Agree. In my world, I need polarization to see the quality of the waves from the shore. I’m spending a lot of time trying to asses conditions and figure out the best places to surf. With the glare of the sun that can be a pretty painful process. Polarization helps a ton. And In the fishing world, that means seeing deeper, see what’s moving in the water around you and getting yourself in the best position to make that catch.
So where are the Salt Junkies headed next?
Joseph: Oh man. Well, this was one of our first competitions for prize money and it’s safe to say we may have found a new calling for us. We’re on the hunt for another boat and we’re thinking about figuring out how to compete in every tournament that we can. There’s a lot of killer prizes in the mix and as long as we keep the excitement alive we know we’ll be able to keep fishing and enjoying the good stuff fishing has brought us.
Interviewer: Well thank you Joseph, for your time and pass along a huge congratulations to your team. We’re excited to see more success stories from you guys as the season goes on. Keep us in the loop!
Joseph: Sounds good and thank you. We’re excited for what’s to come. Been an incredible adventure and the support from Filtrate has been incredible.
Learn more about the Salt Junkies at https://saltjunkiesinc.com/