Summer Fishing Safety
by Bob Jensen
It’s straight up summer, and this summer, in many areas, has been a hot one. This is a great time to be on the water, and the fishing has been really good for lots and lots of folks. There are some things we should do to make sure we enjoy our mid-summer fishing. Following are some of those things.
We need to be diligent about taking care of our skin. The sun feels wonderful most of the time, but it can seriously damage your skin. You need to put sunscreen on in the morning and you need to put more on during the day. Some people like the idea of getting a tan so they go with a sunscreen that has a low SPF(sun protection factor). Forget the tan and put on 30 SPF minimum. I had some really bad burns back in the day. They were very uncomfortable immediately, and the results of those burns can come back to haunt us later in life. Put on sunscreen.
There is also clothing available that will protect us from the sun. Cabela’s has a line of clothing called Made in the Shade that does an outstanding job of protecting our skin from UV rays. There is a variety of both long and short sleeve shirts, long pants and shorts. Made in the Shade clothing is comfortable, it’s stylish, and it’s practical. Check it out.
Drink plenty of water. It’s important that you drink water even when you’re not thirsty. You don’t want to wait until you’re thirsty, then take a big drink. That can create health issues. I like to leave a bottle of water out in the open right next to where I’m standing or sitting in the boat to remind me to drink.
Consider fishing either early or late in the day. Some will say that the bite is better then anyway. I’m not so sure about that, as I’ve experienced some really good mid-day bites right in the middle of the day in the summer. However, if you can, go fishing early or late. You’ll stay cooler and safer, and the fish will bite then.
This year some areas of the country have received lots of rain, some are very dry. This means that some lakes and rivers are higher than normal, some are lower than normal. Either way, there are going to be obstructions under the water that wouldn’t create problems under normal water levels that can now, with higher or lower water, be dangerous. Really pay attention to hazard buoys. Also be careful near shore and at the boat ramp. The water will probably be deep enough in a straight line out from the ramp, but if you get off to the side just a little bit, your chances of hitting something that you don’t want to hit improve.
Even though we have to take some additional precautions on the water this time of year, we still need to get out. The fishing is outstanding in many areas right now, and many of us live for the summer. Enjoy the summer, but be safe doing so.
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