Bass anglers fall into that strange breed of people that often revel in getting wet. Indeed one of our blogging team insists that if he isn’t getting wet, he’s not going to catch ‘the big one’. Therefore getting creamed by a wave is something he regards as a good sign ! There are differing ways of approaching the water though. Whilst taking for granted that we must firstly make sure that what we do is ‘safe’, thereafter its very much down to the adventurous spirit of each angler.
Some go to lengths to stay dry and warm. Comfortable marks are selected, good waterproofs worn, and some home comforts taken along. Others spend huge money on keeping dry whilst entering the water. The whole subject of wading gear is a hugely complicated affair. The issue is that bass anglers take this gear into places which it’s generally not designed for. The bulk of the mainstream wading kit available has been designed with freshwater in mind. We take it into a saltwater environment, then add in barnacles, sharp rocks, sharp fish, treble-hooks & sand. The top-end waders are pretty expensive, and even then there’s no guarantee of being dry at the end of a session.
Then we have the wetsuit brigade. These are the intrepid explorers of the sport. By selecting a wetsuit to go bass fishing, they have already decided to get wet, and to stand in places that ‘normal’ anglers dare not tread. They will swim to that boulder in the surf, or cross an uncrossable gulley. The angler left on the shore looks at them with a mixture of bewilderment, pity for their mental state, and a healthy dose of jealousy, as deep-down, we all want to be that nutcase on the furthest rock !!
The wet-waders are an oft forgotten group. This blogger is one of those. The starting-point is often the realisation that even if the waders don’t spring a leak on any given trip, if you walk far enough in them, then that claim of being ‘breathable’ is likely to come-up short, therefore resulting in being wet anyway. So why go to all the discomfort of yomping in waders, when you can let it all dangle free instead ? All that’s needed is shorts (if the general weather conditions permit) or the modern quick-drying trousers and tops. Good footwear for wet wading is readily available, with a choice from the wading section (& neoprene socks) or from other disciplines, such as rock-climbing, canyoneering, kayaking, etc… The wet-wader has abandoned hope of being dry, & embraces the salty wetness of the ocean ! Vaseline can be required to stop chaffing though.
One of our team is currently writing a Blog about wading jackets, and we might even discuss waders at some point. More importantly though, it’s now time to get wet again. Sand will fill the washing machines of the bass angler households, rows will take-place over wet kit being laid out to dry around the house, unnatural smells shall rise from damp waders and boots … & we will love every minute of it !!!