Unique is the word.
Relaxing is the theme, and 13 feet is the length. Dave Will of LaGrange does not fish from the everyday ordinary bass boat.
Will is exploring West Point Lake and is fishing from a lightweight 80pound plastic boat. It looks like a lower-sitting version of the canoe. As Will sits in his boat he is extremely close to the water – only inches away.
His streamlined boat has no motor. It is equipped with a fishfinder and a semi-comfortable seat right in front of the pedals, which power the boat.
Will’s boat is pedal-powered. It’s like riding a bike. His legs do the work, and the boat can get up to four miles an hour. There are two paddles underneath the small boat.
“This is a good workout, and it takes a lot of endurance. I’m having a good time. This is an adrenaline rush. I can go up the creeks, and sometimes I feel like I’m going in the water,” said Will, who has flipped the boat over one time.
He is used to high adventure. Will is a 12-year veteran of the United States Army. Will has logged some military tours in Afghanistan, Korea and Germany. He is now out of the Army and is self-employed.
And Will is enjoying his new life in LaGrange, having moved here four months ago from Colorado. West Point Lake is a huge part of Will’s new lifestyle.
“The lake is nice and big. It is beautiful with nature. I’m getting close to the turtles and the fish (from his new boat). This is phenomenal,” said Will.
He is sitting low in his seat. He is pedaling hard. Will’s boat is the lake version of a bicycle.
“I can get more shallow than any other boat. I can paddle into water as shallow as one foot,” said Will, the military veteran, the American patriot and the fishing fanatic.
And, yes, he is fishing from his 13-foot lightweight, motor-less boat on West Point Lake. Will is fishing weekly from his pedal-powered boat. And he is catching fish from his camouflaged boat, largemouth and spotted bass included.
“There is a lot of water out here and some big fish (in the lake). And some of the fish can pull the boat around,” said Will.
He caught a four-pound largemouth bass last week in a cove off West Point Lake. And the fish did give Will and his plastic boat a bit of a ride. Will eventually boated the fish and released it.
He was fishing with an artificial lure in three feet of water.
“It is easy catching fish (from the boat), and it is easy spotting fish,” said Will.
His small boat blends in with the background of the lake. The West Point Lake bass almost overlook the boat and the fisherman onboard. David Will likes that.
“I’m having a good time. I’m out here with nature, and I’m enjoying the peace and quiet. I can hear the birds and see the turtles. This is a lot of fun,” said Will on Tuesday afternoon from the boat ramp at Highland Pines Resort and Marina.
And if he wants to get from point A to point B on the lake, it requires some pedal-power and a strong set of legs.
One thing is for sure, Will never has to gas up his fishing boat. Will is saving his money, and he is developing some new leg muscles. One fishing trip at a time.
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Chris Fernsler Sports Editor