Dingwall, Samsal win Bassin’ For Bucks

The 27th annual Bassin’ For Bucks tournament took place this past weekend on Lake of the Woods, out of Sioux Narrows. This tournament started way back in 1996, the idea of local anglers Chris Bell and Mel Geisbrecht, as a way to extend the season for the community of Sioux Narrows. All these years later, it is a successful event that always had a full field of 120 teams competing.

My partner Mike Reid and I have fished the tournament together since the tournament started. We were 13 years old that first year and fished out of a 16 foot Lund with a 30 horsepower motor and a cooler for a livewell. We caught the bug for tournament fishing at a young age and have had a lot of fun fishing together over the years. Mike grew up in Sioux Narrows and while he lives out in western Manitoba today, he knows this part of Lake of the Woods as good as anybody. Because life gets busy, we don’t get to see each other very often anymore so that makes this weekend extra special for us.

We had a great weekend, eventually landing second place in the 120 boat field. We had three good days, bringing in limits of largemouth and smallmouth bass totaling 55.34 pounds. We mixed together a few new spots we found last week prefishing with some spots that have been good to us in the past.

The Sioux Narrows area of Lake of the Woods is one of the most scenic parts of the lake and it hosts excellent bass fishing. The fishing can get a little bit tough during this tournament because many of the teams have fished the tournament for years and know the area so there are not a lot of secrets out there. We caught our fish on a variety of spots both shallow and deep and spent about half our time fishing for smallmouths and largemouths.

Jay Samsal and Scott Dingwall won the tournament with a three day total of 55.94 pounds, the majority of their limits consisting of smallmouths. They have had a lot of success in local tournaments over the years and have won many of them around the region. It was their first time with Bassin’ For Bucks and they were due to bring this trophy home. They had three great days of fishing.

The big bass tournament was a giant 5.98 pound smallmouth brought in by Arvel and Thomas White. That is one of the biggest smallmouths I have heard of coming out of Lake of the Woods! The big largemouth of the tournament was a 5.88 pound fish caught by Shayne Mozden and and Brandon Scott. The biggest limit of the event was caught by Reid Smith and Kyle Degagne on day two when they brought 21.54 pounds to the scale. Third place in the tournament went to Paul and Coel Forsyth with 55.22 pounds.

One of the reasons that Bassin’ For Bucks remains popular is the community supports the tournament so well. All of the resorts and restaurants have specials throughout the weekend and everybody is welcoming to all of the anglers coming to town. There is a great group of volunteers who make this great event happen every year so a big thank you to all of them!

There are several tournaments happening around the region over the next month or so and this weekend, the Crow Lake Classic is taking place in Nestor Falls. My wife Shelby and I have teamed up for this one for quite a few years and it’s always a weekend we look forward to. Crow Lake has a great bass fishery and it is a beautiful lake with deep, clear water. We rent a cabin at Hanson’s Hideaway Lodge who hosts the tournament, it’s always a fun weekend.

Scott Dingwall and Jay Samsal are the winners of the 2023 Bassin’ For Bucks tournament.