Specialized Clothing for Fly Fishing
Compared to outdoor clothing for camping or hunting, clothing designed for fly fishing is somewhat specialized. Fly fishermen spend time partly on land and partly in the water, making their clothing needs somewhat unique. The special items needed for fly-fishing includes waders, a fishing vest, rain gear, underwear, polarized sunglasses, gloves, and a hat.
For fly fishing, hip or chest waders are just about essential. Hip waders are good for fishing in small streams but have there limitations. Chest waders that go up above the waist are the best for almost all fly fishing situations. Chest waders come in two types. Boot-foot waders, in which the boot is an integral part of the wader, and stocking-foot waders, which require a separate pair of wading shoes. Many fly fishermen prefer to wear socking-foot chest wader made of neoprene.
A fly fishing vest with a lot of big pockets is a basic clothing need for the fly fisherman. The pockets are needed to hold all of the fly fishing paraphernalia that an angler needs to have with them. No one wants to have to leave the water every time they need something. A vest with Velcro fasteners is best because it provides quick and easy access to all your tools, but closes securely.
A good quality rain suit is very important. The best ones are made of materials that breathe, so that you do not get wet on the inside from perspiration. Make sure that the jacket closes securely at the wrists and around the neck. Having a hood on the rain jacket is also important.
When fly fishing, full length underwear under your waders is a necessity. The underwear will stop heat loss from occurring, if for example, you are standing in a cold stream for several hours. The best choice of underwear is made of wool. Other good choices are Durofold, which is a combination of cotton and wool, and polypropylene. The same guidelines also go for socks.
Although it is not an actual piece of clothing, a good pair of polarized sunglasses are very important for fly fishing. Not only will they cut down on the glare from the sun, but they will also make it easier to read the water.
Wearing gloves for fly fishing presents a contradictory problem. Gloves keep the fingers and hands warm, however, while fly fishing it is necessary to have full, or almost full, sensitivity in your fingers. Fly fishing gloves leave the last joint of the fingers free allowing for the sensitivity that is needed.
To a fly fisherman, his hat is very important. It should be wide brimmed so it protects your face, ears, and the back of your neck. It protects not only from the weather, but also from hooks if a poor cast or a gust of wind carries the fly toward your head.
Wearing the correct clothing will not only keep you safer and drier, but it will add to your enjoyment of the sport of fly fishing.