Bob Izumi visits Sunset Country

This past week has been a busy one for me after a few weeks of focusing most of my time on bass tournaments.
It was fun and productive, though, as I got the chance to do some multi-species fishing around home and get some work done.
I spent six-straight days on the water last week as I did some guiding for bass and walleye, filmed a couple of TV shows, and also got to spend a day on Lake of the Woods with Bob Izumi and a small crew that he brought up to our part of the world.
Bob used to come and fish the Kenora Bass International for years, and the first time that I met him was the first year I fished the tournament back in 1993 (I was 10 years old at the time).
Over the years, our paths have crossed at bass tournaments in the U.S., as well as at various boat shows across Canada, and I’ve had the opportunity to get out with him to film TV shows when he has visited Sunset Country in the past.
Last week, Bob was up fishing on Lake of the Woods along with his son, Darren (who also is his cameraman), brother, Wayne, and a small group of guys from Cuda knives—one of his show sponsors.
He spent three days on the lake and filmed segments for walleye, lake trout, and pike, so it will be some good exposure for our area.
The day that I tagged along, we spent the morning catching walleyes, had a big shore lunch, then caught lake trout in the afternoon. The fishing was great so it was a fun day on the water.
Bob is exactly in real life how he is on TV, easy-going and fun.
That is the best compliment that I could give him. He also is a great angler—evident by all of his bass tournament success over the years—and he has done very well for himself as a fishing promoter since the early ’80s.
As someone who is following in his footsteps to some degree, I certainly look up to him.
For my own TV program (“Fishing with Gussy”), we do 13 episodes per year, so it’s a fairly significant project as far as the amount of time that’s put into it.
For me, it’s just the fishing end of it. But for Shelley Bujold and Matt Kennedy, the two behind the camera, they have many more hours into editing the content to make a full day of fishing into a 22-minute show.
Last week we shot two pretty good episodes—one for walleye on Lake of the Woods using live bait; then in another we did our annual bass tournament show.
We went out in the evening and caught a bunch of big smallmouths.
It’s going to be a great show and very entertaining with all of the banter that was going around.
On the guiding end of things, I had a couple of days of walleye fishing and one day of chasing bass, so it was good (it’s nice to mix things up). I like doing that more than just fishing for the same species every day.
The walleye fishing was really good all week, with most of the fish I was finding on humps in 22-30 feet of water. Bass still were shallow for the most part in two-eight feet of water, but I’m sure anglers could start finding them showing up on offshore humps if they spent enough time looking around.
This week I’m down in Sioux Narrows getting ready to fish the 21st-annual “Bassin’ For Bucks” tournament on Lake of the Woods.
It’s hard to believe but Mike Reid and I have fished the tournament together since the very first year back in 1996.
We were 13 years old at the time and fished out of a 14-foot Lund with a 30-h.p. motor and a cooler for a livewell! We’ve had a lot of fun at this tournament over the years and, of course, we always look forward to it.
Look for my “Bassin’ For Bucks” report in next week’s column.

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