By Montana Grant

Posted: April 23, 2023

Getting out for the first time requires some patience. Anxious anglers have been preparing all Winter for their first Spring trips onto the water. Whether you are wading or boating, take your time. If you’re in a rush, you can get hurt or wet!

Boats are finicky after a long Winter. Start with some fresh fuel and check all the systems. Charge up the batteries and test everything before leaving the driveway. We have been fishing with the boat guy that says they took care of this and then we discover that nothing works at the boat dock.

One of my wading buddies was excited to catch his first Spring trout. He put on his neoprene waders, gathered his gear, and went down the bank. On the way to the river, I discussed how important it was to not rush. Frank promptly went over the bank and over his head in the river!

Spring waters still have ice and dangerous conditions. Log jams, debris, and slick patches of ice can quickly upset your day. Your body is also not yet in Fishing Shape. This means that you may be a tad overweight, not as flexible, and off balance. Throw in the round river rocks and accidents will happen.

The other thing that surfaces will be your leaky boots and waders. After a few minutes of wading, that terrible, freezing, moist, feeling will begin to ruin your day. While fishing is fun, the leak will make things uncomfortable. Hypothermia can become a concern if you put this off too long. Now it becomes repair time or new wader time.

You are also out of your routine. This is when rods get busted. Your knot tying skills are not up to speed. Handling fly boxes and other gear needs practice. Get organized and plan the day. Slow down and relax. No fish is worth injury or busted gear.

It will take several outings before you get back in the groove. Take shorter trips and fish less. Eventually, you will be ready for a marathon. Even when in fishing shape, you can realistically fish maybe 8 hours. The long days of Summer may present longer opportunities but pick what you enjoy the most. 15 hours of Summer fun will wear you out.

Remember, Fishing is about having FUN!!!

Montana Grant

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