How important are connecting pax?

I've got a relatively small airline going now on Quimby, and the other day briefly tested out a YVR-ANC route, yet ended up cancelling it because no seats were filled, only the cargo spots. ANC is a 6 demand airport, and I would've been the only one with a direct YVR-ANC route, so I'm a bit confused as to why no passenger spots were filled? Is this because my feeder networks aren't large enough? Or because everyone's afraid of the Alaskan winter? Whereas if I start a route from YVR-YYZ, the planes will get filled 100% each demand calculation, even though my feeder networks are pretty small.

If anyone could clarify this for me I'd appreciate it. Thanks!

Flights across the US/Canadian border generally need a big feeder network as there is already a ton of capacity across.

I would suggest to you as all others, serveve the regional market and build a giant feeder and then start flights far away places. I am personally working of getting a subsidiary flying whit just LETs and Caravans from ARN just to have a giant feeder, even if this will not give a higher profit then maximum 10% profit margin.