Behind the Scenes Part II: Hooked on Wild Waters, Wild Panacea Waterfront

With the previous day’s fishing for bass on the beautiful St. Marks River under our belts the targets for this adventure with Hooked on Wild Waters with Drew Gregory were the redfish and trout of the Wakulla County, Florida coastline. I was honored to be Drew’s show guest for the river episode and today I was along for the ride as Robert Baker of The Wilderness Way and Reel Fin Addict Fishing was the guest for this saltwater episode. 

Unloading the boats at the Panacea waterfront.

We met up at a launch near the quaint hamlet of Panacea, Florida. For this filming we had the very generous assistance of Mark Mitchell, Chairman of the Panacea Waterfront, who brought his boat to be the camera vessel. Thank you, Mark!

Tools of the trade!

Drew’s boat of choice was the BlueSky Boatworks Angler 360° with a prototype E-Drive motor. 

Thank you, Mark Mitchell, for your generous assistance! Mothershipping my Coosa HD and commandeering the camera boat!

Robert chose to pedal the Cruise FD and I was in my Coosa HD. We spent quite some time getting rigged and ready with all the fishing and camera gear needed for a day of filming. Photographer, Brandon Kennedy filmed Robert and Drew doing an opening segment about the area before we got on the water. 

BlueSky Boatworks Angler 360° rigged and ready. Drew and Robert go over the logistics.

Because of the stiff wind and our destination being quite a distance from the launch it was decided that Mark and I would mothership my kayak on his boat to the location. This was a totally new experience for me (and my kayak)! Up she went on the stern of the boat and we took off across the flats to our spot. Mark dropped me off at a creek mouth where I caught some trout and reds on topwater plugs while waiting on the rest of the gang to arrive. It was high tide and the fish were in or close to the flooded grass. 

Filming a segment with Drew and Robert to introduce this episode.

We spent the afternoon working the winding shoreline, catching trout and reds. Mark and Brandon followed Robert and Drew as they caught and released fish. I was still having fun catching trout on topwater. It was interesting to watch the on-the-spot interviews when the fish were shown off and released but it was hard to stop fishing when it was peak activity! 

I got the luxury of a tow to the next spot! Thanks, Mark and Brandon!

The beautiful bluebird sky of afternoon turned to soft shades of red as the sun went down. We had to leave the fish biting in order to make it back to the launch before dark. Robert and Drew cruised right along with the Flex Drive and E-Drive. I held on to the side of the camera boat and got towed back at quite a nice clip! Woo hoo! 

Filming Robert and Drew Fishing the shoreline.

With the two days of filming done the next day was a fun family day of fishing and floating down the Wakulla River with Drew’s wife, Cristina, and son, Theo. The only cameras we had were the GoPros on board the kayaks since Brandon had flown back to Charlotte with all his camera gear that morning. Drew and I were in our matching “Wicked” Coosa HDs, Cristina and son in a Tripper and Robert was in the new BITE, all perfectly suited for us! It was a great time fishing, floating, and chatting on the beautiful river. What a wonderful way to end a great week! 

Robert Baker with a nice trout.

Here is the saltwater episode, “Wild Panacea Waterfront” from YouTube and it can also be viewed on Waypoint TV app and at HookedOnWildWaters.com

It was quite an honor to be invited to highlight my beloved home waters by fishing with Drew Gregory for his amazing show. I came to have deeper appreciation for all the planning and work that goes into producing such a high quality show and also the joy of seeing Drew’s obvious delight in exploring the incredible array of wild waters. I wish that I possessed the confidence and chutzpah in front of the camera that my daughter has but Drew made me feel so comfortable and at ease with the whole process. If you ever get a chance to show off your wild waters with Drew then please do so! It’s really an incredible experience! 

The Cruise FD and BlueSky were perfect silhouette foils for the magnificent sunset.

A little topwater trout action in my Coosa HD.

These boat tows made for a quick trip back to the ramp!

Fun family float day on the Wakulla River. Drew’s wife, Cristina, and their son Theo in the Tripper.

What a great week! Jean, Drew and Robert

Jean, Robert, Drew, Cristina and Theo are a happy bunch after our awesome river float on the last day. Such a memorable week!

~Jean Wilson

Jackson Kayak Fishing Team

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