The fisherman’s arsenal is full of many tools. Different anglers will emphasize various tools such as the rod, reel, hook, or lure. Some even swear by high-tech devices such as sonar, which displays groups of fish below the boat.
However, one item that few mention that can make or break the success of a fishing outing is a simple pair of sunglasses. Not any pair will do because sunglasses serve a number of important purposes. These include comfort, eye health, and safety for yourself and your boat. And the right pair of sunglasses can greatly increase your catch. Although these claims might seem like a far-fetched fish story, they’re anything but — as you’ll see below:
If you’re fishing in a boat on open water, glare is a big problem on sunny days. If you’re facing the wrong direction, you will get intense glare directly from the sun and from the water. Several hours of eye squinting in these conditions will cause eyestrain and even headaches in many people. If your boat deck is colored white, it can get very bright when the sun is overhead, and will add to the water glare.
A good pair of polarized sunglasses or Nike prescription sunglasses with the right tint will solve this problem. Nothing beats polarized lenses for eliminating reflected glare from horizontal surfaces such as the water and your boat deck. An additional tint will cut down the overall lighting level. Different times of the day and weather conditions produce different light intensity levels. Your choice of tint should reflect this.
Two types of ultraviolet (UV) light reach the earth’s surface. UVB causes sunburn to the skin and to the outer surface of the eyes. Another name for sunburned eyes is snow blindness. This condition doesn’t require snow. Any situation where the eyes are exposed to excessive UVB from all directions, such as being on a boat in the middle of a big lake, can cause the problem.
The other form of ultraviolet is UVA. Unlike UVB, clouds are no barrier to UVA. If there’s enough light to see clearly on a cloudy day, that light includes UVA. This type of UV is weaker and requires years or decades of cumulative exposure before eye health problems such as macular degeneration and eye cataracts appear.
Sunglasses or Nike prescription sunglasses with lenses made from materials that naturally block all UV eliminate this health risk. Alternatively, you can get a UV protective coating on lens materials that lack natural UV protection.
Glare interferes with clear vision. This is important when moving at high speeds in water used by other boaters, especially people using small craft such as kayaks or canoes. Striking submerged rocks near the shore is another hazard. Slowing down in such areas is recommended, but even a slow speed won’t prevent hull damage to your boat if glare prevents you from spotting a submerged rock.
Polarized sunglasses or Nike prescription sunglasses remove surface reflections and glare to give you a clear view of underwater hazards.
The surface of water acts like a mirror. It reflects the sun and the sky. Even without direct sun glare, reflections of the sky still get in the way of seeing the fish. A quality pair of polarized Nike prescription sunglasses reveal where the fish are hiding. For sight fishing in shallow water, polarized lenses are a must. They let you go to the fish, rather than passively hoping for one to bite. Slowly maneuver your boat near a group of fish, make a pitch, and land the lure next to the fish.
Polarized brown glasses remove surface glare and increase the contrast of what you see underwater. For general fishing, polarized gray does a good job of eliminating surface glare and cutting down the overall light intensity of bright sunlight.
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