Safety tips in remote tropical areas [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Safety tips in remote tropical areas

03-14-2005, 11:43 PM
Thought it would be good to pool the collective wisdom of the flats anglers of the world in one thread... the topic is safety in remote places (please add your tips):

- when the flats turn muddy and the feet start to sink, head back to more solid ground, one more step and you could become mired in what might as well be quicksand

- shuffle the feet lightly along where stingrays are laying, the changes of hitting them from the side instead of stepping on them is much better. If you step on them then tend to curl around and impale the tops of your feet or ankles or shins with that poisonous stinger miles away from even the most remote medical clinics

- avoid taking risky steps over coral or rocky shorelines, boat wreckages, debris, etc. - there is no 911 service in these remote places


03-15-2005, 12:18 AM
I can add a few...

- be sure to stay on top of the treatment of any blisters, sores, scrapes and abrasions. Keep a small bottle of iodine in your day pack or boat bag.

- Crazy glue is great for closing up minor or even substancial cuts. It's also great to apply over foot/toe blisters to prevent them from getting worse.

- Drink, drink, drink...water that is. The quickest way to ruin your fishing holiday is to become dehydrated and come down with sunstroke.

03-15-2005, 06:12 AM
Avoid crossing channels that you have not thoroughly inpected at high tide for the return trip back to shore. You may just get stranded. If you do find yourself stranded do not swim the channel without help from a friend who should sight for sharks first. I think you get the point! Fred A knows about channels in Brewster on the Cape. Consult him for further information!!! LOL!

Don't carry that backpack full of stuff such as extra water, gear and clothing. Leave the heavy stuff on shore where it's safe. You'll have a better time with no wieght on your shoulders. Use a fanny pack and free up that casting arm.

Always try to cover an area that you can see the bottom well with polaroid glasses keeping the sun behind or to the side. You'll spot more fish also!


03-15-2005, 07:39 AM
I think the most important thing is:
Tell someone where you're going and when to expect you back.

Nobody will ever look for you if they don't know you're missing!

03-15-2005, 08:41 AM
No matter how white, & pure that sand is - never wade barefoot. One laceration on the bottom of your foot will end your trip.

If you do cut your feet while wading barefoot - clean and dress the wound and do not give into the urge to put a wade boot on and wade the next day (can you say bacteria rich enviroment?).

Ankle deep to high Shin deep water and you have the upperhand in regards to being the largest predator on the flat - If it hits your thighs (especially on the ocean side) there is a good chance that you will be the second largest predator - and at a serious disadvantages when it comes to teeth.

Not as dangerous but two Items I never leave home without: 1. Desenex - The dreaded crack chap can end the ability to walk and thus wade - and it has the added bonus of leaving that nice looking white streak on the back of your shorts. 2. Imodium AD - Kaliks + Coconut based drinks = you know where this is going.

03-15-2005, 08:54 AM
..Resist the urge to use saliva when tying knots....there can be some little things in the water .....good way to push Imodium Stock Prices up, if ya know what I mean..
..As most the areas I fish are pretty safe (Bahamas) I still like the feel of a 9 inch
filet knife in my possession....good fly fishing equipment is difficult to come by down there, if ya know what I mean..

Finally....strongly agree with with first aid items mentioned above...i usually have a few water proof badages...neosporin..alcohol prep pads and few asprin....and oh, a few pieces of whole clove in case of any dental pain.....

Water, water, and more water.....drink as much as you can all day long.....

03-15-2005, 10:09 AM
Lots of good stuff already.

I would add "resisting the urge to cast to toothy critters of size when wading".

03-15-2005, 10:45 AM
The only real problems I have had have been from the sun.
Always use very good quality sunblock.
Particularly around the neck and if you fish in shorts (I don't anymore) the back of your legs.


03-15-2005, 10:47 AM
this may sound obviouse, but sun burn is the biggest threat on the flats. Anyone who has ever gone on a trip to the tropics will never forget the sad sight of the paisty white guy from Maine that didn't protect himself. The beat red face. The winces with every movement. Probably got drunk on a charter boat and passed out.
But even a little slip up could cause big problems. I have a friend who was wearing sandles, and forgot to put blok on his feet. That night they blistered up. His trip was over.
You are more likely to get a sunburn than kick a ray, get bitten by a shark, or kidnapped by Al Queda. I will go as far as wearing a polypro mask and sun gloves at and around high noon. If I come back from a trip with only a little color, I know I did well. The days of the "Savage Tan" are probably over. So cover up, wear a hat with good coverage and reaply the sun blok frequently. You will stay cooler as well.

03-15-2005, 10:53 AM
avoid taking risky steps over coral or rocky shorelines, boat wreckages, debris, etc. - there is no 911 service in these remote places
In the "bush" one should NEVER assume help is at hand. Keeps you on your toes and will often stop one from doing something stupid ;)

Anywhere I go out of the truck or plane, I'll have a little kit attached to me. Few first aid stuff, some calories (powerbar), ... call it the survival kit.

Play hard, train for the worst & come home safe.

03-15-2005, 12:15 PM
Have an extra supply of any meds that you are on. Local CVS is not around the corner. Also for those of you wearing glasses have a backup pair of glasses in case you break a pair. FishHawk

03-15-2005, 01:46 PM
I would add "resisting the urge to cast to toothy critters of size when wading".

That's one thing that I can't avoid doing... ;)