'Goin In'

#1
Just wondered if you'd care to share the times you've 'gone in' while wading. How did you fare/recover? Anything dramatic happen? Do you use a floatation emergency device now? I ask because I've had a couple close calls lately that have given me a greater respect for the power of water lol.

Any good stories?
 
#2
My first time going in was in California. My uncle and I were fishing the Stanislaus river. I hadn't been fishing long, maybe a year or two and still had some learning to do. The crystal clear water showed 4, 18" to 22" trout lazily taking flies in the current. Strike one for me, I was to excited to think things through. Proceeding directly into the current I notice a small depression in the stream bottom, strike two. My first thought, I can make it, nope strike three. As soon as I took the first step, out go my feet and I went under. Wader filled up quick the current was much stronger than I anticipated and swept me down stream quickly. I looked like a floating yard sale since every pocket in my vest was unzipped. Tippet, indicators, fly boxes all floating with me down river. Some how I managed to save the fly boxes and 1 spool of tippet, held on to my rod the entire time,then grab a tree branch that swung me to shallow water. I stood up, wader completely full and took a holy shit that was close breath. So far so good since then.
 
#3
My first time going in was in California. My uncle and I were fishing the Stanislaus river. I hadn't been fishing long, maybe a year or two and still had some learning to do. The crystal clear water showed 4, 18" to 22" trout lazily taking flies in the current. Strike one for me, I was to excited to think things through. Proceeding directly into the current I notice a small depression in the stream bottom, strike two. My first thought, I can make it, nope strike three. As soon as I took the first step, out go my feet and I went under. Wader filled up quick the current was much stronger than I anticipated and swept me down stream quickly. I looked like a floating yard sale since every pocket in my vest was unzipped. Tippet, indicators, fly boxes all floating with me down river. Some how I managed to save the fly boxes and 1 spool of tippet, held on to my rod the entire time,then grab a tree branch that swung me to shallow water. I stood up, wader completely full and took a holy shit that was close breath. So far so good since then.
Did you get one of those fish?
 

Cole L

Fish Fiend
#4
About a month ago, I was fishing in the snoqualmie below tokul and snapped my line. Saw my indicator floating back around in the current and decided to try to grab it. When I stepped out and grabbed it, the rocks under my feet rolled out and I was in the river about 15 ft off shore. Had to swim back in the current and somehow my waders didn't fill up with a lot of water and pull me down. Didn't lose anything, and even still got my indicator. Still pretty scary for my first time falling in the water
 
#6
My first time going in was in California. My uncle and I were fishing the Stanislaus river. I hadn't been fishing long, maybe a year or two and still had some learning to do. The crystal clear water showed 4, 18" to 22" trout lazily taking flies in the current. Strike one for me, I was to excited to think things through. Proceeding directly into the current I notice a small depression in the stream bottom, strike two. My first thought, I can make it, nope strike three. As soon as I took the first step, out go my feet and I went under. Wader filled up quick the current was much stronger than I anticipated and swept me down stream quickly. I looked like a floating yard sale since every pocket in my vest was unzipped. Tippet, indicators, fly boxes all floating with me down river. Some how I managed to save the fly boxes and 1 spool of tippet, held on to my rod the entire time,then grab a tree branch that swung me to shallow water. I stood up, wader completely full and took a holy shit that was close breath. So far so good since then.
LMAO
 

P.Dieter

Just Another Bubba
#7
More times then I can count over the decades. Waders make recovery more difficult but not that bad, just DON'T try and stand up in the shallower water, crawling until you can drain them is a good idea. Wearing a wading belt and keeping it tight is even a better idea.

In the summer I don't wear waders and wade much better and safer.

If you've never gone in over your waders doing it on purpose on a hot summer day might be a good idea, then you'll know what it's like.

One that sticks in my mind was my first trip to the Metolius, walked down to he bank saw that it was only about 3' and stepped off. It was over my head...man that river is clear and cold. ;)
 
#8
I've had more close calls floating sketchy rivers, but the time that comes to mind was last winter. After hitting the ski hill all day, we wadered up and hit a river mouth known for its lake run browns. We only had about an hour of daylight left that time of year. While Enlightened concentrated on the first, and usually most productive hole, I explored far upriver, floundering through deep snowbanks, effortlessly seeking another holding lie. I found something that looked promising, waded out and perched on a boulder twice the size of a basketball. I proceeded to cast my streamer out into the run, but before I could get one good swing, the boulder began to roll. I kept with it for a few revolutions, but eventually was dumped. I was swept through the rapids, but didn't resist, just aimed for shore. I pulled myself out the exact time the sun dropped over the canyon wall, causing the temp to drop by at least fifteen degrees. By the time I made it to the hole Enlightened was still happily fishing away in I was walking like a zombie because my wading jacket and waders had frozen instantly solid the minute I left the water. The car thermometer read negative ten when we pulled out of the lot.
 

Alosa

Active Member
#11
Went down on the Feather River back in April. Waders have studs, but the flow was up and the rocks were slippery. Nothing serious happened as I was in a back eddy. I just cursed like a sailor when I recovered. I credit my wife's wise advice of always taking a change of clothes when I go fishing. I was able to change into dry clothes and tackle the river again. Nonetheless, I have contemplated a PFD for a while now...probably another wise move.
 

Old Man

Just an Old Man
#12
Falling in goes with fishing skinny water. It's bound to happen sooner or later. Trying to get something out of reach, get feet tangled on the bottom, feet stuck under a sunken branch. To fast of a current.

I now only wade up to my calfs. If I have to get to faster water I find another way to get to it or I don't go at all. I like being alive and able to fish.
 

Preston

Active Member
#13
Cole,
I would have thought that everyone would have been aware by now that this old piece of folklore is nonsense. Waders full of water will not "pull me down"; water, in water, has no weight, you'll float at the same level in filled waders as you will in dry ones. Water in your waders still has mass, and thus inertia, so your movements will be slower but it's not going to pull you to the bottom.
 
#14
The first I remember was on the North Mills in North Carolina. Small stream--I walk up to a trail crossing and see a couple nice fish finning in the tailout. I'm a noob and super excited and cast my dry-dropper rig out there without looking where my feet are. To my surprise, BOTH fish take the flies and I'm hooked up to at least 30" of trouts. I step a little closer to get a better angle and...whoosh, up to my neck. I scrambled up the bank and landed one of the fish, a nice brown. Thankfully my Dad, brother and friend were watching the whole thing so I didn't have to just describe it to them...they didn't let me forget it for a while.

Another good one was fishing down Bullfrog Rd. in the winter. I wade down into a pool and see a fish midging. I cast my streamer in and got a take but no connection. Excited (hmm, is there a theme here?), I step a bit closer and the steeply sloping gravel beneath me gives way and in a sort of slow motion fashion I'm floating, then swimming. The old one-handed, rod in the air, wader-wearin' side crawl stroke to shore. It was not fun post-holing through the snow 3/4 miles back to the truck, but at least I wasn't frozen solid like TriploidJunkie. The work kept me warm enough to avoid hypothermia.
 
#15
I was fishing the Beaverhead River in the middle of April. It was cold - early morning ice in the guides. Four of us were working our way up stream and needed to cross and I took the lead as we were all looking for the best spot to make the crossing. I stupidly called out, "this looks like the best way!" as I waded forward towards the far bank, stepped into a little deeper water than expected and caught my foot on a root. This dumped me forward chest first into the drink and filled my waders. I untangled my foot, slogged forward a couple steps and belly crawled up the bank.

I heard my buddy Jeff's dad say something like, "I think I'll go this way," as he led the other two through totally easy water. Sheesh.

Soaked from shirt to socks i pulled the waders off and drained them and wrung out clothes freezing my ass off. I even tried to fish a little after that but fearing hypothermia might kick in as my core temp was dropping I had to walk back to the cabin about a mile for a change of clothes and a warm-up. All I wanted was to keep catching the browns we were getting into on lightning bugs and hares ears... sitting in the cabin for a bit sucked knowing the other guys were out there with rods bent and reels singing.

The lesson learned is to never say, "This looks like the best way!" when you're wading. It's worse than saying the W-word out loud.