Here’s a Fish’n Canada shoot with a “do or die” situation for you. Back at the office, Ang and Pete were having a rather concerning production meeting about the constantly changing shooting schedule and how they were going to pull off the last episode of the season. Consulting the calendar, they realized they only had one small opening in the late summer. If they couldn’t get it done in that tiny window of opportunity, it was going to be another cold shoot to deal with. Adding to the drama, they only had a day and a bit to get everything done.
If this sounds easy to you, then you don’t know how we work. We have heard of other fishing shows shooting one or more full episodes in a day. Not us. We pride ourselves not only on getting the fishing portion just right but everything else, from interviews to lodge shots to landscape to time-lapses, etc. We look at it as a full production and we never cut corners.
Knowing that we had such a small window to shoot this show, Ang and Pete picked Bass as their quarry. To them, Bass is their confidence fish. If there was ever a chance to pull it off, Largemouth and Smallmouth were the deal.
Their location was Weslemkoon Lake, rated as a Top 10 Bass lake in Ontario. Their accommodations were at Hidden Cove Cottage Resort run by Rick and Sandra Arsenault.
Upon arrival, the boys quickly launched the Princecraft and were off scouting and shooting—no time to waste! They fished relatively close to the resort and would venture afar the next day.
JUST CAN’T CATCH ‘EM
As the afternoon turned to evening, all they could muster up were small Bass of both species.
The following morning brought a beautiful sunrise but also a very cool frost—the first one of the season and not at a time when the boys really wanted it.
This day started like the previous day had ended: lots of small fish. At one point Angelo stated, “We can’t catch any big fish ’cause there aren’t any here.”
Pete replied: “I think the odd one is lurking around here, we just can’t catch ’em!”
As the day progressed the sun heated up the air to a comfortable level but the warming also pushed in a strong west wind. By now the boys had made their way into Otter Lake, which joins Weslemkoon. They were working the outside of a shallow weedy/wood filled bay and decided to move to the opposite side when all of a sudden, click-click-click. The motor wouldn’t start. By using all their electronics, along with constantly raising and lowering the Power Poles, they drained their cranking battery.
AS GOOD LUCK WOULD HAVE IT
Out came all the batteries, jumpers were put in place, and after what seemed like eons, the Merc cranked up and was good to go. A huge relief, but this was also valuable time taken from fishing!
As good luck would have it, while the boys were adrift, they headed into that aforementioned shallow bay. It looked good. With the Verado still churning and the wind blowing, they immediately hooked up with a nice fish. Then another. “Drop the poles down,” said Ang. They proceeded to meticulously work the bay with Jig and Pigs, spinnerbaits and Senkos. They would either catch aggressive fish on the spinnerbait or by swimming the jig, or catch lethargic fish with the unweighted wack-rigged Senko.
“That weightless Senko drops so slow,” explains Pete, “that it’s quite easy to work in cover like wood and sparse weeds. If the spot looks good, like a stump, and the fast baits fail to turn a fish, fire that Senko in and you’ll often be surprised when a fish darts out and nails you!”
The trip ended with a successful shoot: loads of small fish, some real grinding from the guys to upsize the fish, and of course a lot of luck with the power drainage of the rig miraculously drifting Ang & Pete into active, feeding Bass!