Washington Fly Fishing Forum banner
  • Please post in our Community Feedback thread for help with the new forum software! If you are having trouble logging in, please Contact Us for assistance. 

1 - 20 of 39 Posts

·
Custom Title
Joined
·
12,145 Posts
I have experienced a few fairly close strikes (once on horseback - took me 100 yards to stop that cayuse, but I thanked her when it was over.). I have also been effectively trapped above timberline in the Rockies which offered little in the way of safe shelter. Experiencing a thunderstorm in such locations will get your sole & undivided attention during and leave you wet but grateful afterwards. If I'm fishing, I vamoose at the first thunderclap. The Weatherbug app has a feature that displays the closest lightning strike in relation to the users's location, which has come in handy on occasion.
 

·
Art 'n Fish
Joined
·
311 Posts
I took a spring time motorcycle ride across the country a few years back. While crossing Texas all alone, I rode through center of alighting storm the moved in and I was the tallest object out there. 45 dark and scary minutes until I ducked into the first motel I came to.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
10,387 Posts
Well, to answer your question, no. But, I suspect most of us have simply been out fishing in good or fair weather when these t-storms roll in. That certainly is the case in the Rockies. When on a float, all you can do is hunker down and hope it passes quickly.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
643 Posts
Lightning travels from the ground up. If you, with your rod, happen to be the shortest route to the charge in the atmosphere it will exit through you.
Get small, or better, short during an electrical event. When floating, get to the bank under something taller than you.
Golfers are also quite prone to lightning strikes.
 

·
Indi Ira
Joined
·
9,492 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,847 Posts
Lightning is the last thing I'm concerned about when I'm out on the water. A nasty bar crossing or becoming mako food will get me long before a lightning strike.
You don't get nearly as intense thunderstorms over there as on this side of the mountains. I've thought I was a goner a couple times.
 

·
LA RAMS are SUPER BOWL CHAMPIONS!
Joined
·
5,345 Posts
While fishing the Colorado River in the mid 90s I got surprised by a vicious thunderstorm. Lightening bolt legs were walking down the river banks towards me and the hits were so close I saw them as red light. The thunder was an instant SIZZLE-BOOM. The cherry tomato sized hail hurt pretty bad too when it hit my head and hands. I threw my fly rod into the willows and crouched down low in my vulcanized rubber chestwaders. When it passed, the river was a mess of white hail balls, green leaves, and branches. I was happy to be alive and the fishing got really good within 20 minutes. Hail balls cooled the water nicely. After hiking out that evening I discovered my Mazda truck was pock marked all over like Noriega's face from hail damage. I was always concerned about lightening while I lived in the Rockies. My biggest fear is getting killed by lightening while tarpon fishing the flats in Florida (very exposed).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,608 Posts
Been through a few storms, but the worst was a short lived but insane passing squall, complete with winds, rain, hail and lightening, that pinned us down for a half hour on Rock creek two years ago.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,326 Posts
Graphite is a conductor, but a poor one. Fiberglass is not a conductor. Still, I'll not hold a wet fly rod with a wet line during a thunderstorm "just in case."
I'm not sure I agree that graphite isn't a good conductor but then my knowledge of chemistry and conductivity is limited. I'd always thought "carbon fiber" = graphite. Isn't carbon what brushes in electrical motors are made from?

Twice I've been out on stillwaters when electrical storms came close (and eventually overhead, around, surrounding, pounding) and when lifting the rod for a cast I could feel static electricity discharging from the reel/reel seat to my wrist. Fly rod down, boat to shore - in a hurry.
 

·
Custom Title
Joined
·
12,145 Posts
As stated, graphite is a conductor, but not a good one. In fly rod applications, since the entire length of a rod doesn't contain continuous fibers & the fibers are infused/bonded/surrounded by resins (which are insulators), an assembled fly rod may be an even poorer conductor. Add water on lines, rods, in the vicinity, and on the user as well as metal guides, reels, hardware and there is sufficient potential there for me to harbor NO desire to wave a rod around during a thunderstorm no matter how good the fishing may be. When I mentioned the "on horseback" event earlier, that mare had been skittish for about 20 minutes as we headed back to the barn ahead of an impending storm. Just before the horse bolted, I felt my hair/head "tingling." My cousin who was some 60 - 70 yards behind & off to the side of us said no sooner had the mare bolted than lightning struck a telephone pole that was adjacent to the spot from which we made our sudden & swift departure. That was the very first lightning bolt & thunder clap that day (and it was LOUD!).
 
1 - 20 of 39 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top