The leaves are turning colors, there’s a chill in the air, kids are back in school, and fewer people are out on the water. It’s a perfect time to go fishing or hunting!
Before you go, prepare yourself for the changing conditions. Here are some things to consider:
- Water Temperature: Fall days can be balmy and bright, but the water is getting colder. If you spend any significant time in water even as warm as 60°F, you can be in serious trouble. Check out How to Prevent Heat Loss to understand how your body loses heat. Every time you venture out on the water you need to dress for protection from a possible swim.
- Always Wear Your Lifejacket: That’s smart any time of year, but the video in Let’s Stop the Senseless Loss of Life demonstrates the importance of wearing it when you get dumped in cold water.
- Protective Apparel: Think of fall boating apparel in terms of layers: base layers, insulating layers, and outer layers. The article Cold-Water Layeringcovers these important choices of protective gear.
- Being Seen: Low light, mist, and fog can make you harder to see this time of year. Wear bright colors—orange, lime green, or yellow. A strobe, bright safety light or chemical lights can be a lifesaver, especially if you’re boating in an area with power boat traffic.