(NFR) Do you carry a gun while fishing?

Based on bhudda's recent experience on the Cedar, I have to ask: Who feels the need to pack some sort of self defense weapon while on the water?

I'm not at all concerned about the wildlife, it's the 2-legged crazies you can meet on the water that makes me think about it.

Even while floating the Little Deschutes near Vail, I've seen some very suspect individuals living/camping along the river.

I own a Glock 19 for home defense, which I take on road trips now and then, but never take it on the water - it's big and heavy for my style of fly fishing.

Now I see a very compact Kel Tek .380 is available that you can just slip into a vest pocket, and I'm wondering if that makes sense.

It's too bad we even have to talk about self defense on the water. But, I'm married with kids and feel a responsiblility to stay alive for some time to come.

Do you carry a gun/knife/mace/brass knuckles/ etc while on the water?

What is it and why do you recommend it?

Thanks for your thoughts.

Old Man

Just an Old Man
Do you carry a gun while fishing?

I don't have use for any guns and I have only heard of one instance of a gun being used while fishing. I know several people that pack heat but for me I'd just as soon get up and leave any spot and leave the gun totter alone.

Do you carry a gun while fishing?

iagree There is probably a greater liklihood of getting hurt or killed carrying a gun as there is not carrying one. There are too many people out there who are more likely to use a gun than I am and I don't want the death or injury of someone on my conscience, even if they are a bottom feeder. I carry a knife, but it's small and not for protection purposes.
Do you carry a gun while fishing?

In a couple weeks when I do purchase my gun (Hopefully sub compact Springfield XD) it will never leave my side, unless it goes up to the shoulder holster.


Active Member
Do you carry a gun while fishing?

Something to consider is the "Criminal Justice System". in other words justice for the criminal, not you. if unfortinately you find your self in a questionable shooting/self defense incident, you need to be aware, that should you be prosecuted, the jury is sure to ponder, why in the world would you bring a gun fishing, was this guy looking for trouble?. it's just something to think about. with my past experience in Law Enforcement, i saw several incidents, where persons, who i considered to be the victim, were the one led away in cuffs. while it is very rare that i carry a gun these, days, i can, and do. with the popularity of meth production these days, these jerks that we used to see and hear about only in the urban areas, are now in the woods.
bottom line for me is: i'd rather be judged by 12 than carried by six. it's a personal choice, of which i believe is different for each individual. i have found that the best tactic for self defense, is to actually avoid trouble. if i see a van down by the river, i'll just find myself another spot to wet a line.

Matt Burke

Active Member
Do you carry a gun while fishing?

I do keep a piece of taped up re-bar under my seat. My wife sleeps with her .38 and after reading what happened to Jeff, I will get a permit and pack on the river. I'm fishing 2 to 4 times a week and I've run into situations that really put me at risk when I'm alone. This just isn't the same world I grew up in with JP Patches and Brakeman Bill.
Do you carry a gun while fishing?

Carry at your own risk and be responsible, make mature judgements and not be gung-ho just because you think you have an edge being strapped.

IMO, if you have a split second to walk away, don't think twice and do it, were not in high school anymore, except for some, but still take my advice.

Believe it or not, our manly egos get in the way from making MATURE decisions.

Do not create confrontations, always be aware of your surroundings and whos around you.

I conceal a Glock 23 .40 cal but its for last second decisions. Be tactful and be the negotiator, not the instigator. You never know if THEY have a gun also.

Be safe and remember you are there to fish and not create tension. Give knowledge to those who don't know, if they con't to be destructive and immature, WALK AWAY and just make a call.
Believe it or not, 98% of all violent confrontations can be avoided by swallowing your pride and waking away. It takes more to be a man to walk than to stand.

Bhudda, your lucky to be alive, it could of been worse. Glad your ok.
Do you carry a gun while fishing?

I carry a 357. magnum in a shoulder type holster. It has a 2.5" barrell, and a blue flame about 2 feet long when discharged. It has enough stopping power to eliminate just about any threat that comes within 10 to 20 feet of me.
The question I ask myself everytime I strap it on is...Is this worth spending the rest of my life in prison for?
Unfortunately our justice system is so screwed up that if you do shoot someone who is trying to kill you, You have a 50/50 chance of being prosecuted. '
This is not the old west, and the state will nail your butt.
So yeah, if it comes down to it. I will do what I have to do, but I am extremely careful to be responsible about the decisions I make on where I will be when packing.
What if Buddha shot that dude?
He would not be able to prove self defense in a courtroom. Even though the guy was freak, it never works out in your favor when you pull a gun.

There are several books available that one should read before carrying a handgun for personal protection.
As stated earlier in another reply. "a jury of your piers will decide your fate."
I do not fish the Cedar river. I fished it once on opening day, and after witnessing the people who were there, and reading countless threads here on the site. Why would I want to fish there?
Do you carry a gun while fishing?

Guys , every post applies here , i wanted to quote them all, and i wanna springfield XD too:)...... now , for the record, if i did have a gun thursday i dont know where id be right now, on my couch, or on some steel. in most peoples mind they would of saw a clear reason to shoot this guy, especially cuz he had a broken bottle, but i couldnt live with that on my consciouos (sp), nor would my mother be proud:) im sure if i encountered him an hour before , maybe a different story, maybe some understanding? i hope this didnt get people riled up to get self protection, your best protection is your brain, and if you use it right, it'll ussually get you outta every thing alive !

bhudda, minus 1 cat life:)
Do you carry a gun while fishing?

damn near everyone in alaska carries a gun fishing and once in a while there are violent confrontations, but maybe not as many as you'd expect. maybe its that you can see that the other guy is armed too. i always figured i was more likely to need my double barrel to ward off idiots than bears. turned out to be wrong, it was a bear, but at least he was sober.


Dana Miller
Do you carry a gun while fishing?

bhudda said:
now , for the record, if i did have a gun thursday i dont know where id be right now, on my couch, or on some steel.

bhudda, minus 1 cat life:)
If you had used a gun in the situation as you described it, I think that you would have been arrested and prosecuted. :( The prosecutor could present the arguement that YOU provoked the incident by yelling at the guys breaking the glass. He could also argue that instead of walking (running) away when the guy broke the bottle and started coming across the river, you chose to stay and confront him. I believe that Washington law requires one to retreat (unless in your home) from a confrontation unless in the act of preventing a crime upon yourself or others.

That said, I do think that bubba deserved a good a$$ whooping! However, you should still report this incident to the police and get it on the record. If bubba sobers up and calls the police, he could say that he was just relaxing along the river when some guy came up to him and started beating on him. Any marks on you could be construed as bubba trying to defend himself.

About 25 years ago, a former co-worker of mine killed a man in self defense. Despite the fact that my co-worker gave up 6 inches and at least 50 pounds to his assailant, the assailant knocked him to the ground and came at him with a knife, the assailant had a prior felony conviction for assault and my co-worker had never been in any trouble in the past; the County prosecutor charged him with 2nd degree manslaughter and my co-worker went to trial not once, but twice. Fortunately for my co-worker, the jury couldn't reach a decision in the first trial and found him innocent in the second. However the ordeal cost him a small fortune.

So if you ever do need to use a gun, make sure that you have exhausted EVERY option first. Even then, if you don't get prosecuted, chances are that you will still get sued.

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