Working For The DNR
Adams gets in some 'Bottom Feeder' action netting fish for state
Tim Adams of Outdoor Channel's "Bottom Feeders" takes on some sidework for the Minnesota Dept. of Natural Resources. (Mike Suchan photo)
PRESCOTT, Wis. – Tim Adams said “you can’t miss it. If you do, I’m going to wonder about you.”
I was wondering about seeing his side job for the Minnesota Dept. of Natural Resources. Adams, the middle man from Outdoor Channel reality show “Bottom Feeders,” was commissioned to net fish for a study.
I saw much more. While he was driving more than an hour from Wabasha, Minn., I was coming from LaCrosse, Wis., two hours down the Mississippi River. There were gorgeous vistas almost everywhere in river country. Passing through Lake City, the myriad of sailboats on Lake Pepin was stunning.
Saw the huge Red Wing signs, from the famed shoe company and the town of the same name, as I passed and headed over the river to the Great River Road on the Wisconsin side. The views from the bluffs were spectacular approaching Prescott. (I later stopped at the National Eagle Center in Wabasha; look for that story soon).
Adams said just go over the Prescott Bridge and it’s right there. There was Point Douglas Park, a finger of land between the St. Croix and Mississippi rivers. Easy ‘nuff.
But not seeing his 30-foot jon boat on the other end of the bay and only one other car in the huge parking lot, a call was warranteed.
“I see ya,” Adams said from the middle of the bay. “I’ll come get you when we’re done setting net.”
Adams and fishing partner George Richtman put out 2,500 feet of net for the fish survey being conducted by Matt Mork, a Minnesota DNR fishery specialist out of St. Paul. The team included an electric shock boat and several interns recording results.
Mork said Adams would help determine if Asian carp had invaded the area yet, and he also would tag any paddlefish or sturgeon. He could keep any of the regular carp and other bottom feeders he netted.
After retrieving an escaped beach ball for some kids swimming at the park’s beach, Adams drove his boat parallel to the net. While Richtman banged a stick on the hull, Adams moved closer and closer to the net.
Dragging it up was the real chore. Richtman pulled up the buoy and anchor and began what Adams called “yanking net.” For more than a half hour, he and Adams trading off their hand-over-hand work of tugging the huge net out of the 20-feet of water.
On one of his rests, I asked Adams how doing Bottom Feeders has affected him. He manages a fish plant in Pepin, Wis., where fellow show subject Mike Johnson brings his catches. Adams, showing some “Minnesota nice,” was polite and understated.
He said being a subject of the show brought a few phone calls from old friends and acquaintances, but it hasn’t changed his life that much. “I still got my day job.” Asking others in the region about him garnered more information.
Stopping for gas in Lake City, a man noticed my out-of-state plates and kindly started a conversation. Learning of my mission, he said, “Oh, gosh, you’re probably the most interesting guy in town.”
Wow, that doesn’t say a lot for Lake City. Maybe he just meant of the visitors. OK.
He continued that he liked the show and that Adams seems like a good guy, a real outdoorsman. Other Minnesotans said they like that the area is featured on a show, and most want to talk about the other great outdoors opportunities there.
Back to the net pulling; Richtman hauled in the only fish from that bay, a 10-pound carp, but they had about six more places to go on the day.
After the fish catch, Adams asks, “You wanna try?”
Not particularly. But I did and didn’t last 10 seconds, but of course I was there to take photos. Yeah. That’s it. There to take photos.
Speaking of photos, click on the image to see what I came up with.
"Bottom Feeders presented by RAM" Show Page