Fishing Tip # 3 – Using A Wading Staff For Safety

Wading is a big part of fishing, and it can also be one of the most dangerous aspects of the sport.  Whether we are fishing mid summer, wet wading in the cool creeks, or spending those cold, windy days on the river in the spring and fall steelheading, wading is an essential part of our outtings.

Most of us who fish quite regularly have had the misfortune of taking a spill in the river.  If it was in the summer, you were lucky!  In the fall, spring or winter however, a spill usually means a shortened day, and one that is very cold until you are stripped out of your waders and warming up in the car with the heat on full blast.

One of the simplest methods to reduce your chances of falling while wading is to use a wading staff.   I started a few years ago by simply picking up branches on the side of the stream.  In particular, branches that have been polished by the river after a beaver has gnawed away at them are perfect wading staffs.  Choosing a branch that is about as tall as you are is the best way to go.  Not only can you use it for keeping balance, you can also use it to prod the depths of pools, or to see just how deep the muck is when you have no way around a swampy area.

Alternatively, there are many great wading staffs manufactured specifically for the purpose.  The better ones are telescopic and clip right on to your wading belt or vest for easy grabbing when you need them.

Either way, to ensure your safety on the river, use a wading staff when getting around!

Rough water to wade

Rough water to wade

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