Archive for the ‘Russ Bailey’ Tag


Russ Bailey and camera crew record the crappie action on Rend Lake for upcoming TV program.

Russ Bailey and camera crew record the crappie action on Rend Lake for upcoming TV program.

With more and more outdoorsmen and women recording their activities the quality of the recordings can vary significantly.  Videoing hunting or fishing action moments can be a rewarding experience to share with family and friends.

With a little patience and attention to detail everyone can produce a quality video.  Toward that end Russ Bailey has some advice.

Russ is a veteran videographer and crappie fishing professional from Ohio.  He has a television show making its debut this month on the Pursuit Channel entitled “Brushpile Fishing.”  Russ also has a number of crappie fishing videos available through sporting goods stores.

Recently at Rend Lake, IL recording a program for the television series Russ took the time to talk about the process of recording videos.

The discussion began with the choice of cameras.  Russ is very impressed with the Go Pro cameras that have burst upon the market in recent years.  He also indicates that he is using JVC cameras and has had much success.  The feature Russ likes on these cameras is the ability to monitor the recording with the use of the screen on the back of the camera.

Bailey pointed out that HD cameras have become cost effective.  Most Digital cameras on the market have the ability to take videos but they do have some limitations.  Most avid video makers will move up to studio models as soon as they can afford them.  Those prices are steadily declining in the market place.

Videoing on the water does present some problems.  Temperatures, water conditions, etc. do affect the end product.  For instance wind tends to cut out the voice recording.  It is also important to limit the use of the zoom function of a camera.  Russ recommends that if you must use the zoom function do so slowly.

In outdoor recording it is advisable to be aware of the position of the sun.  As with most camera work, be sure to keep the sun either behind the camera position or at best to the side.  Shooting toward the sun distorts the images and often makes them worthless.

For the angler it is important to make sure the camera is water proof.  After all you are on the water and accidents happen.  Speaking of being on the water, if you are alone you can mount the camera on a bracket attached to the boat and let it run.  You never know but what you might catch some great action that would not be the case if you have to dig into a camera bag.

Russ begins every recording session by taking a sample and playing it back.  It gives a chance to correct any problem that might arise.  He also makes sure to take extra batteries as video recording eats up a lot of power quickly.  If possible use a wireless microphone for each person in the video.

Once back home it is time to edit your produce.  There are a number of software products on the market and online.  You don’t have to start with an expensive on.  There is always time to move onto those in the future.  Often the camera comes with a disk that allows for downloading titles and step by step editing.

Russ recommends using background music to enhance your product.  It is important to use only music that is not copyright protected.  You can get such music off the Internet by Googling “Free Music.”

Finally, you can open a free “YouTube” account and place your video on it.  Then send emails to everyone you want to view it indicating that it is available on line.


dock shoting/lake kinkaid

Russ Bailey admires crappie caught in the marina at Lake Kinkaid using technique called dock shooting.

Other than an occasional ice-fishing trip, most fishing gear is stored at the beginning of hunting season.  It is does not come out until time to prepare for spring.

South of St. Louis, occasionally crappie anglers appear on open water in winter.

Illinois average crappies reach a weight of about a quarter pound by their third year of life.  By the fifth year they are one half to three quarters of a pound.  The average creel contains fish that are three years of age.  Larger fish are older and usually seem to come from further south due to milder temperatures and longer feeding periods.

Maneuvering the boat just off a dock housing pontoon boats, Russ Bailey explains how the metal of the tubes can warm the surrounding water by a degree or two.  This is as important in cold weather as are sunny areas between docks and piers.  An expert in dock shooting, Russ begins to probe the areas between boat and dock.

Dock shooting is a finesse technique that allows one to place a small jig or Road Runner under tight structure where crappies seek refuge from the sun and find warmer water in winter.

It requires a 100% graphite rod with a solid backbone.  The rod must have the right flexibility.  Bailey’s 5 1/2 foot Sharpshooter rod from BnM Fishing has the ability to move the cork handle to a position most comfortable for him.  In case the guides begin to ice up in very cold weather, he sprays a little Reel Magic on them.  Bailey uses six-pound Hi Vis line.

Finding a comfortable stance, Russ points the rod at the spot he believes fish to be lurking.  Then holding the lure in one hand he bends the rod down in an arc before letting go.  Sounds simple but it takes a special rod and practice to master the technique.

In winter, Russ seeks pontoon boats moored in marinas.  The aluminum of a pontoon boat warms faster than other materials such as fiberglass.

“I have found different size fish under each of the tubes of the same pontoon boat,” exclaims Russ.  One tube might attract small fish while the other tube might have lunker crappie residing beneath it.  Bailey stresses that you never know until you catch a couple exactly what size fish are lurking under a specific tube.

As a tip, Russ points out the cobwebs between boat and dock are a location where no one has fished recently.  He also uses a float when fishing a jig but not when using the Road Runner.  The Road Runner drops down with the blade fluttering like a wounded minnow.

The float Russ uses is an ice fishing one.   It must be small but barely able to suspend the jig at a depth desired.  The type of float that is large at the top and tapers toward the end of the line is Bailey’s preference.

As the float to settles into position, Bailey watches for any sudden change in its position as an indication of a bite.  The float sink beneath the surface or it might just tip over.  The first indicates a fish is taking it to the bottom while the second tells you that a fish took it and is moving toward the surface.  Any side movement also indicates it is time to set the hook on a fish.


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