Consider the popularity and variety of the technically-challenging and somewhat “elite” game fish available to today’s angler — permit, steelhead and a growing number of impossibly-difficult species. These “glamour fish” can overshadow traditional and more common warm water species. With this in mind, the RA Beattie Outdoor Productions team initially questioned if a film about Northern Pike could stand its ground in today’s media space. Understanding that familiarity often breeds contempt, we came to the conclusion that Northern Pike are probably not going to blow viewers away unless we traveled to the best location in the world and caught the largest, most aggressive fish on the planet. Which is exactly what we did. To give this project legs, we found: the finest location for fishing and scenery, the best pike fishing, an all-star crew and one helluva story. It took a bit of doing, but we’ve got the location, talent, team and enough tricks up our sleeves to pull it off.
We partnered with Adventure Destination – the premier outfitter and collective of lodges in Northern Saskatchewan. The film was shot in late June, when pike are very active. Teaming up with bush pilot Ron Striker and renowned angler and artist Jeff Currier, we targeted the biggest, baddest pike on the planet in remote, subarctic waters. Anglers typically catch between 20 and 40 fish per day, with fish weights ranging between 20 to 35 pounds. Trophy lengths of 47 inches and more are typical here.
Fishing with Jeff and Ron, a sense of humility and humbleness was apparent in both. Enjoy this clip!
While these men were raised in completely different places and followed completely different paths to “live the dream”, they hold in common a history of taking a leap to shape their lives. Ron stacked shelves in a grocery store for 17 years before becoming a bush pilot. Jeff started in a fly shop, working for $4.75 an hour. Since that time, he’s shaped himself into one of the foremost angling authorities, fishing in more than 58 countries and landing more than 325 species on the fly in salt and freshwater. Both men describe how they went from the bottom run to doing exactly what the wanted to do in life. Viewers will relate to both stories and the chances taken by seekers to make life happen. Woven with these human stories is some of the baddest, most-predatory pike fishing footage ever captured.
This film premiered and traveled with the 2016 Fly Fishing Film Tour, Canadian Fly Fishing Film Tour, The Rise Film Tour in Europe, New Zealand and Australia.
You can read about Jeff’s day by day accounts while filming in Saskatchewan on his blog.
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