Hats are big news in fly-fishing… & here’s your guide to the right gear.
In fly fishing, hats and headwear come into play whatever the weather. When it’s sunny, you’ll need to keep the sun out of your eyes and off your neck. If it’s raining, you’ll want headgear that protects your face and keeps you as dry while you fish. So, rain or shine, you need top-shelf headwear!
For the right kind of fly-fishing journey, take the right headware…
…your top 10 guide to top-shelf hats & headgear.
Outdoor summer hat
These may not fancy or stylish, but who cares?! The thin design and lightweight fabric with removable flaps will help keep you perfectly cool when it’s hot.
The safari is so lightweight you’ll be able to focus on your fishing instead of being annoyed by heavy headgear. The adjustable chinstrap is a great comfort and convenience touch.
If you’re OK with a floppy hat, the Boonie is your ideal choice of fly fish head gear. Super comfortable, built to last and a smart width brim provides protection and good vision.
If you’re feeling patriotic, this attractive camouflage pattern may appeal to you. The sturdy brim will shield your eyes from the sun’s rays and enable sharp fly-fishing.
Fly fishing caps come in a range of designs and are suitable for any activity which happens under the sun. Cotton and nylon fabrics give great resistance to wear and tear.
Outdoor mesh hat
Stop wasting time valuable fishing time swatting flies and squashing mosquitoes… the outdoor mesh face protector keeps the pests away so you can focus on your fishing day.
If you’re a fly fisher who likes a laugh, pop on a trucker hat for your fishing day. It looks fun and will make a great selfie to capture your day, but it also does the serious work of protection.
Behold, the floppy hat that doesn’t make you look silly. The Bora Bora has a mesh vent for heat relief, pest control and also an effective sweatband to keep sweat at bay.
With a 360 hat, fly fishing will be a dream. Sun shield, windproofing, wide brim, face shield and a handy shawl keeps you covered from all angles to fish away all day.
Fishing with a large crew? Then the Adventures hat will make every group member happy… reliably blocks ultraviolet rays, and breathable vents on both sides keep cool air flowing.
Specialised fly fishing jackets, sourced from the world’s most innovative fishing brands.
There are two popular styles of fly fishing jacket:
Wading Jackets are the most popular choice for fly fishing, especially trout fishermen, because they are lightweight, waterproof, breathable, short in length and have a mesh lining to prevent wicking when you wade too deep.
Adjustable Velcro cuffs keep water out when casting, and there’s a hood to stop water running down your back. Plenty of pockets are another reason this is such a favourite.
Spray Jackets are an incredibly popular choice for fisherman who favour more movement and convenience when they fish, like salt water flats fishermen who are more active and mobile as they look for the best spots.
Very lightweight, incredibly breathable and really easy to carry, thanks to innovative non-metal zippers which mean you can fold spray jackets down to a tiny size.
The first thing to know: Fishing sunglasses are not an accessory, they are a necessity!
Long days on the water require the very best fishing sunglasses money can buy. Go cheap and you’ll go disappointed, it’s that simple. All fly fishers are aware that the glare of the sun off water is incredibly powerful and, therefore, incredibly distracting and uncomfortable if not managed well.
Why good polarised sunglasses are essential for fly fishing
Best practice with polarised fly fishing sunglasses is all about timing.
The sun is an inescapable intensity, it’s that simple. Particularly in the hours just after dawn and just before sunset – the ideal times of day to catch a big bite – which is exactly when the majority of up to 65% of incoming solar radiation is reflected by the water, due to the slant angle.
And it’s not just about the sun, hun…
But it’s not just about keeping out the sun out for comfort, there are serious health considerations such as premature aging of the eyes, cataracts, eye strain and a whole host of other eye health issues you need to be aware of out on the river.
With better vision, comes better fishing.
Harmful effects of UV radiation aside, of course good fishing sunglasses are crucial in the provision of a major strategic benefits as well. Reducing surface glare enables you to look directly into the water and spot trout, track bonefish or throw crankbaits at bass holding at the edge.
Sunglasses still do the business down deep.
Even when you are fishing deep, it’s still a lot of help having good polarise sunglasses for fly fishing, for example if you need to see what’s going on as fish get near the boat or bank – so you can prepare to land it. With a good pair of polarized glasses, you’ll be amazed at the enhanced visibility.
Better polarization means better navigation.
Plus of course good sunglasses also help you guide the boat as you fish, making you more efficient at navigating through the chop and the waves, keeping in tune with the fish. In fact, there’s not much about fly fishing which good polarised sun glasses don’t make much better.
Sun buffs and gloves
Gone are the days when buffs & gloves were a drag… now they’re a big benefit.
In days gone by, wearing sun buffs and gloves while fly fishing was an unappealing idea. You wore them because you had to. They were cumbersome and bulky, and were a huge handicap in the execution of your fishing technique. Put simply, they were a pain… but now they’re a must-have.
Here’s why gloves are the go-to for today’s modern fly fisher:
Protect against hooks, spines & fishing lines!
These species will wreak havoc on your hands, particularly the Snook, which are well regarded for their razor-sharp gill plates, plus some pretty spikey dorsal spines. Trust us, you do not want to try something like Snook without gloves… the ripped up palms and lacerations will flow!
Get a great grip!
As reels seem to get smaller and smaller, driven by the desire for weight reduction, grip for the bigger handed fly-fisher can get tricky and present rising difficulty in achieving a tight enough grip for a good fish. But a pair of lightweight buff gloves fixes that problem!
When it comes to sun protection, the hands are like the back of your legs – often overlooked and not given enough attention. Wearing fishing buffs and gloves for sun protection is one of those things that are so obvious now that many anglers are asking themselves why they didn’t cover up before.
What’s in a fly fishing buff?
As well as protecting you from harmful UV rays, sun buffs and masks help you spot fish faster and clearer… what’s more they will drastically reduce glare as light is blocked from coming through the back and bottom gaps in your sunglasses. Once you’ve used sun buffs, you won’t go back.
Never heard of sun buffs?
If this is the first time you’ve heard of a sun buff in relation to fly fishing, don’t worry, you’re not alone. A UV fishing buff is a seamless tube of fabric which can be worn in a variety of ways around your head and face to add extra protection from damaging sun rays.