A family day on the water is ideal, and to keep it fun you’ll need a few safety tips for fishing with kids. The joy of watching a child catch a first fish, a personal record, or a new species is easily overshadowed by injury. Here are 10 tips on how can you keep the kids safe and sound!
Protective eyewear. Polarized sunglasses are ideal for reducing eye strain and for spotting fish, but they’re invaluable for protection from branches when walking into a pond or from lures being tossed by other kids. If you’re night fishing add a pair of clear glasses from a hardware store.
Barbless hooks. Should a child (or an adult) be snagged,barbless hooks are far easier to remove. Barbed hooks are important when bait fishing, and a serviceable option is to slightly bend them down.
PFD’s. Kids in kayaks, canoes or boats are safer when wearing a Personal Floatation Device.
Float and line. Having a float and line to toss to kids in the water is a good idea either when fishing from land or from a boat.
Clearly defined rules. Kids want to have fun, but running around a wet boat deck shouldn’t be one of them. Set your rules ahead of time and follow them throughout the trip.
Juices. Bug juice, sunscreen, and drinks are important to have to keep bugs away and to prevent either sunburn or dehydration.
Use kid-friendly tackle. Some rod outfits are long and heavy, and younger kids simply can’t handle them very well. Pack along light-weight kids fishing gear that makes their fishing easier.
Appropriate clothing. Rain or wind gear, fleece or wool, and sneakers or boat shoes keeps kids warm and dry.
A First Aid kit. Have the normal bandages, gauze pads, cleaning and disinfecting liquids and gels, and pain medication are important when fishing with kids.
A whistle. Yeah you might look like a lifeguard or a football coach, but when kids stray upwind of you a blast or two gets them back.