How Can I Keep Cool While Fishing In the Summer?

Its hot, yes I am wet with sweat, but this bluegill put a smile on my face

Its hot, yes I am wet with sweat, but this bluegill put a smile on my face

Its so hot I saw a dog chasing a cat and both were walking. Its so hot I dug a potato from my garden and it was already baked. Its so hot my chickens are laying boiled eggs. Its so hot robins are using pot holders to pull worms out of the ground. Its so hot I saw two trees fighting over a dog.

Its so hot the global warming true believers are having field day claiming our record setting temperatures prove they are right. But when I ask them what caused the previous records we are breaking, those only one degree cooler set back in the 1930s, they can only reply with a blank stare. Must have been all those depression era SUVs everyone was driving.

Its so hot I almost don’t want to go fishing!

Last Sunday I spent the morning on Millers Ferry Lake in Alabama getting information and pictures for an Alabama Outdoor News article. It was miserable by 9:00 AM and unbearable by noon when we quit. I thought about jumping in to cool off but realized I could not get any wetter. I sweated so much the money in my wallet was wet.

There are many ways to keep fishing and beat the heat. Fishing at night is my favorite. Not only is it cooler, you avoid sun problems and the fish bite better. The Flint River Bass Club scheduled our July tournament this Sunday at Sinclair from 4:00 AM to Noon. And the Spalding County Sportsman Club always fishes night tournaments in July and August because of the heat.

Jumping in the water does usually help since the water is normally cooler than the air. Dipping your cap in the water helps keep your head and the rest of you cool, too. I carry a change of clothes in my boat since I don’t want to drive home in wet clothes, but wet clothes sure do feel good while fishing.

Riding around in the boat creates a breeze that helps so I usually don’t stay in one place a long time. That can help you catch fish, too. Last Sunday we fished over a dozen different places in five hours and caught fish on only one of them. Finding some feeding fish is easier if you keep moving. At least that is my excuse.

Finding any place on the water with breeze helps a lot and bass seem to feed better with some wind, too. So fish anywhere you can stay where the air is moving, like out on a point on the main lake, if you can fight the boat traffic and waves.

Drinking lots of cold drinks helps cool you off a little but more importantly keeps you hydrated. That is very important when you are sweating a lot. Water is probably best but I like Diet Rite Cola. It quenches my thirst better and has no sodium, sugar or caffeine. You do need salt when sweating a lot but I would get too much if I drank colas with salt in them. But I do crave salt and vinegar potato chips driving home after every fishing trip this time of year.

If you fish during the day sunscreen is critical. I put on 100 SPF before leaving the house and carry a spray on sunscreen in the boat to refresh it during the day. I like a baby sunscreen since it doesn’t burn my eyes, and it is going to get in your eyes during the day from sweating, no matter what you do.

Fishing in the shade helps, too. I often try to find a shady bank or get under a bridge to avoid the sun. And the bass like shad as much as I do.

The right clothes can help. Light colored shirts and pants are not as hot as darker colors. I have several kinds of shoes that are well ventilated. And a cap or hat with a big brim can shade your eyes and ears. I don’t like to wear shorts or sandals. Keeping the sun off my skin seems to keep me cooler.

Even as hot as it is, I still prefer fishing to sitting at home with the AC at full blast. So go fishing but try to beat the heat any way you can.