Every year bass fisherman are drawn to the great lakes for the first time to land a trophy class Smallmouth Bass. It may be crucial to know some basic safety facts of rough water boating. I have been fishing Bass tournaments on Lake St. Clair for awhile and have learned some important things that I need to share with you, especially if you are not familiar with rough water because that water could be deadly. Use a checklist to make sure you are prepared for the worst. The list below is my personal list and is only to be used as a reference.
Safety Gear Checklist:
- Life Jackets
- Flares (Shooting and Hand held)
- Visual distress flag (for Air Rescue)
- Air Powered audible horn
- Portable Hand held Waterproof VHF Marine Radio
- Water Bailer - if you spear a large wave and take on more water then your drains can flow to the sump of your boat you will need to manually bail water. Some experts suggest a 5 gallon bucket however that just isn't always possible in a Bass boat. Just remember you probably have a Bass weigh in bag to use in a pinch.
- Back up Bilge 750gph or more with quick connect clips with 6 ft of hose
- Anchor capable of holding your boat in rough water (heavy chain attached or Richter Anchor) and 75-100ft of rope
- Deluxe First Aid kit with body blanket(s)
- Depending on Water/Air temp, you may need to bring extra clothes, towels and yes even socks and underwear in a waterproof bag. You truly never know what mother nature will throw at you, be prepared.
- Dry storage for cell phone
- Standard boat safety gear (Fire ext., etc)
Be safe and have fun fishing one of the top ranked Bass fisheries on the planet!
Thanks for Checking in!