Go Ahead, Make My Shade

At work, I often can be found roasting in an Oklahoma field wearing just a short-sleeved t-shirt with a bandana tied around my head. At play (generally fishing), frequently in shorts and sandals, I may be even less covered against the sun that is intensified by the reflective water. Though always wearing sunscreen, I have a tendency to lose track of time and end up staying out on the water longer than intended.

One of the things I look for when fishing on a hot sunny day, is shade. And not just for my heat relief. It is no coincidence that the shady side of docks and under piers, lily pads, and logs are great hangouts and ambush points for bass during hot, bright days.

Bassmaster Elite Brent Chapman, 2012 Bassmaster Angler of the Year, wisely wears sun protection too. Besides a yearly check with a dermatologist, his sunglasses, sunscreen, sun hat, gloves, face cover, and long-sleeved shirts are all part of his arsenal against sun exposure in his profession.

“I prefer to wear comfortable shirts when I am out on the water,” he shared. “The high-tech, moisture-wicking sun shirts from the fly-fishing industry are so comfortable, they have really spoiled me to a point where it’s hard to wear anything cotton. As a kid I used to go out on the lake shirtless a lot, but now that my job has me on the water 200 plus days a year I need to stay protected from the sun’s harmful rays.”

There have been some great advancements in sun-protecting clothing and even long-sleeved sun shirts can be surprisingly cool and light. As dapper and sage as he may be, with the innovations in sun shielding, I guess I’ll have to come up with a different excuse to dress like Clint Eastwood.

You Might Also Like

Andy Whitcomb

Andy Whitcomb

Andy Whitcomb is a columnist, outdoor humorist, and stressed-out Dad. He says there are “people who fish”… and there are “fishermen”.  One of the few things he knows is that he is a “fisherman”...  To the point it could be classified as borderline illness.  Sharing this obsession is rewarding, therapeutic. He likes to encourage people to “stop and smell the crappie."  Enjoys catching fish, but gets a greater thrill out of helping someone else hook up.
Born in Florida, but raised on the banks of Oklahoma farm ponds. Now relocated to western Pennsylvania. He has fished, worked, lived all around the US.  He has a B.S. in Zoology from Oklahoma State as well...
And he met his wife while electrofishing. He has been contributing weekly to www.takemefishing.org since 2011.