3 Safety Tips to Follow When Wading in Streams and Rivers

Oct 2nd 2019

Fishing is fun and relaxing. Even better, everyone can learn how to fish. It offers an amazing opportunity to experience outdoor beauty.

Statistics show that fishing as a hobby is more common among the elderly. However, in 2017, over 60 percent of all the total participants were below 45 years.

Fishing as a hobby isn’t a dangerous sport. However, like all other outdoor activities, there are some safety considerations to make.

So, where will you go fishing? In a lake, sea, river or stream? All these will affect the safety measures you employ. For instance, if you go fishing in the lake, you’re likely to use a boat. However, in rivers where boats aren’t efficient, the wading boots will come in handy.

The following wading safety tips shall keep you safe throughout this fishing season.

1. Understand the Area

Yes, this may seem like a no brainer to you. But are you planning to go fishing in a river, especially in less than ideal conditions? Well, then do this in a river that you’re familiar with.

By fishing on a river that you’re familiar with, you’re likely to know the easier spots to cross it. The good thing, the ‘easy spots’ will always be the ideal crossing points irrespective of the flows. This helps you to wade with great confidence, especially because you’ll not be seeing the floor. Well, using your wading boots in an area that you’re not comfortable with can be intimidating. It’s therefore much easier to use your gator wader boots in a spot that you’re comfortable with.

While this will work, what happens if you go wading in rivers that aren’t familiar? Well, start by getting the right gear which includes your wading boots or waterproof waders. The mountain streams are likely to present challenges to your balance and footing. If you make the next step while your foot is shaky, bad things may happen. Therefore, ensure your foot is stable before moving the other one.

2. Have Your Wading Belt

Yes, the wading boots and hip waders may feel adequate. But they aren’t. Don’t make the mistake of leaving your wading belt behind.

Having a belt on top of your hip waders may not be a comfortable combination. However, if the river is roaring, you’ll need the best protection you can get. No matter the vest/pack you wear, ensure your wading belt is nice and snug.

So, why do you need a wading belt? In roaring rivers, there’s a possibility that you’ll stumble and fall. If this happens, the waders fill up quickly in the moving water. If this happens, the waders act as your anchor making it extremely difficult to get them off your body.

3. Always go With the Flow

Do you want to cross a stream? It’s naturally easier, safer and wiser to move with the current rather than going against it. But how do you do this?

You can do this by moving at a slender angle downstream. The size of the angle is dependent on the size and speed of the water current. The tricky part is finding the balance between the deeper waters with slower current or trivial water of fast current. It’s important to note that the two conditions are fatal. It’s therefore important to test the depth and current as you proceed.

Fishing in rivers and streams can be engaging. It requires you to use heavy-duty waders for your safety. You also need to understand when it’s safe to wade and when it isn’t. For instance, trying to stand up in fast and deep water to fight strong current is pointless. Learn to observe the waters and respect their source. Disobeying this could only lead to casualties. This is unacceptable! Don’t let it happen! You should always strive to wade safely in a river. That’s the only way you’ll enjoy your fishing expeditions.