Sun protection is a must for anyone who spends a lot of time outside. For us fishermen, who spend hours trying to get that prize catch, the risk of skin problems caused by the sun is high. We’re talking sunburn, premature wrinkles, eye damage, heat exhaustion, and even skin cancer. So it’s important to protect our skin from the sun while we’re enjoying our favorite hobby.
Check out these steps you can take for sun safety while fishing.
1. Wear sunscreen.
Sunscreen is one of the best things you can do against sun damage. Applying it all over your skin that isn't covered by clothing will help you avoid some of the risks of too much sun exposure. When you’re shopping for a sunscreen, look for one that says broad-spectrum, with an SPF value of at least 15. Be sure to reapply every couple of hours, especially if you’re getting wet or sweating a lot, as this may cause the sunscreen to come off.
2. Use clothing that protects you from UV rays.
Besides sunscreen, you can add extra protection by wearing sun-protective clothing. These are clothes made of fabric that blocks UV rays. Stay cool and comfortable while fishing by choosing sun-protective clothing that is lightweight and breathable.
3. Wear sunglasses and a wide-brimmed hat.
Sun protection isn’t complete if you don’t use other UV protective gear. UV-blocking sunglasses will protect your eyes from the sun's rays, which can cause eye problems. A wide-brimmed hat will also protect your face, neck, eyes, and ears from the sun.
4. Don’t spend too long in the sun.
The sun’s rays are at their strongest between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., so if you can, avoid fishing during these hours. You can also choose to fish in the shade when you can.
5. Drink lots of water.
In hot weather, hydration will keep your body from getting heat exhaustion, headaches, and dizziness because it will help your body stay cool.
When it comes to sun damage, we anglers aren’t off the hook. Don't write sunburn off as just a little pain, or the possibility of skin cancer as just another risk worth taking. We need to protect our bodies from the sun's harmful rays so we can enjoy fishing longer.