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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    North Yorks
    Posts
    4,053

    Default Cold Weather Wading Safety

    Bankwheels' post from the snowy Spey, Westie's off the Northie and Skyhook's question about feeding on the river have reminded me that it's time for Great Uncle MCX's annual lecture on thermal safety. Being in Oman at 25C meant that I had forgotten my duty, so here goes. For those who have read this before, I make no apology for repetition.

    Extended periods of wading in water below 6C can be dangerous. Be very careful as hypothermia creeps upon you faster than you might expect, especially if you are over 50, or if younger, less than fully fit. It will get you even faster if you drank a little too much the night before; and faster still if you didn't have a decent breakfast.

    Take breaks from fishing; have a hot drink (tea is better than coffee which accelerates your digestion and calorie consumption); and top up your energy levels with suitable foods. Think about timing what you eat: the Ginster's pasty will keep you going for hours, but you need to fill the gap before it kicks in with sugar (Mars bar) and easily digestible starch (doughnut/brownie/muffin).


    These are the danger signs of hypothermia onset:


    • General dulling of the senses: if you stop hearing the water clearly, beware.
    • Light headedness: small errors in casting and wading are telling you something.
    • Loss of colour, contrast and greying of vision: look out, it's now getting serious.
    • When you start seeing blue shading in the grey, get out of the water immediately, because the next stage is unconsciousness!


    And keep an eye on your friends.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Aberdeen
    Posts
    7,235

    Default

    Water temp on the Northie yesterday was 40 deg F. The wading was OK - but the air temp was sitting at just above freezing and was damp.

    The sort of day where you tire far more readily than normal.
    ..........so many flies, so little time!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    Bavaria - too far away from salmon spots
    Posts
    699

    Default

    Thank you Michael,
    donít bother, some things canít be repeated often enough for each ones safety !
    Maybe I am known in repeating the importance of body fitness for fishing fun and safety, especially for aging fishermen.
    Doing gyms and sports is essential in many ways for safety. Not only to push the limits while fishing, but also to know the own body, the own limits and needs better, to avoid those situations described by you from the beginning.
    Just as a small addition to your important points.
    - Letīs be intolerant to intolerance - to protect tolerance -
    "paradox of tolerance"
    (British-Austrian philosopher Sir K. R. Popper, The Open Society and Its Enemies)

  4. #4

    Default

    I find that wearing a neck buff really helps as thats the main point for the warm trapped air to get out as with a jacket and waders the rest is well sealed. Also a fleece wader liner thats wicking seems to really help too.

    Sent from my SM-G965F using Tapatalk
    Last edited by Rrrr; 17-03-2019 at 04:16 PM.

  5. #5

    Default

    Some good valuable advice.

    However usually my dulling of the senses comes from the lunchtime drams

    I do recall wading hip deep on the Dee a few years ago and a raft of ice the size of a car nearly caught me out. Got the heart rate up when I got the unexpected wallop on the rear end, wouldn't like to think what could of happened had I been deeper or the flow was faster,

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    Northeast England
    Posts
    526

    Default

    Going for a swim in the Tyne in February is a sober reminder of how cold the spring river is!
    Oh.. and remember your wading stick next time daft @rse!!!
    If you want to be happy for a day, get drunk....if you want to be happy for life, go fishing.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
    Location
    North west London
    Posts
    549

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by riffled hitch View Post
    Some good valuable advice.

    However usually my dulling of the senses comes from the lunchtime drams

    I do recall wading hip deep on the Dee a few years ago and a raft of ice the size of a car nearly caught me out. Got the heart rate up when I got the unexpected wallop on the rear end, wouldn't like to think what could of happened had I been deeper or the flow was faster,
    Fishing and drinking go together very well. My experience tells me never during and always after.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Terrace, BC
    Posts
    73

    Default

    I've fished a lot in the freezing cold since I moved to BC. My coldest day on the river was -11 and I caught one that day too!

    When you're fishing in cold conditions, I would strongly recommend not wading above your knees unless you reallly need to. Once those big muscles in your upper legs start to get cold it really sends your core temperature plummeting.

    As others have said, a flask, or two, of a hot drink is essential to get your core temperature up if you start to feel the cold.

    I fish in fingerless gloves but take a full pair of thermal gloves with me as well. If my fingers really start to seize up (bizarrely some days are worse than others for this for no good reason), then I can warm them up in the full gloves.

    And don't fall in!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Co Antrim/ Qatar
    Posts
    1,074

    Default

    Thanks Michael, always go the extra mile to help and explain things.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Warrington - Cheshire
    Posts
    295

    Default Good Reminder.

    Now I'm in my sixties DRAT I do wrap up well and try to keep at knee level or below ( good tip thanks ) always wear thermals top & bottom and keep warm apart from my b****y feet no matter how many pairs of socks I wear and what make/type. Anyone tried heated socks any tips for feet ? Thanks for the reminder by the way MCX

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