RE:Trout on moving water
Pete and Tony -
Glad you're both here to tell about the need for alertness in the field! Some have been less lucky.
I've taken two swims since I began to wade as a young teen. First time was on the upper Green River gorge just east of Seattle the water appeared so clear and shallow I went for the far bank. As I stepped, the current carries me further into it's grip. Soon I was unsure of the next step would find bottom as the current began to dictate my crossing. Sure enough, a step without anything beneath it came and I was tumbled down the current 100 yards with my waders full. I fumbled onto the far shore, gasping with exhaustion from fighting the current with a rod in one hand and the waders heavy with water. Foolishly, I was not wearing a belt. That incident and seeing a guy being carried underwater by his parachuted waders to come up downstream in his underwear (on the Hoh) made me become a wading belt disciple.
The other swim came after moving back to the east coast from Seattle. I was out on Quivett flats, just west of Brewster. The tide was coming in and the fish were with it. Each moment's action got hotter and hotter on the little bar I was on. Even as I realized the predicament I was in, I stood only waist deep. No matter, everything around the little bump I was on had flooded deep and it was hundreds of yards to shore.
Like you guys, I feel wading is certainly something that requires care. I only guide on the flats on a dropping tide, and take very precaution at all times. Studded felt boots with extra heel rigidity make for safer wading in rivers. I prefer scuba boots in SW for comfort and the ability to swim (not that I ever want to need it).
I agree with Tony, perhaps it's a good time for us all to think about safety in the season ahead! Here's to a safe season for all.