Outdoors: Temps won’t stop fall anglers
Despite fall temperatures, avid anglers don’t let that prevent them from launching their boats for some fall fishing. For those who do, the Pennsylvania Fish & Boat Commission (PF&BC) reminds all boaters that beginning Nov. 1 and continuing until April 30, you are required to wear a life jacket while underway or at anchor on boats less than 16 feet in length.
According to the Pennsylvania’s boating accident reports, almost 80-percent of all boating fatalities happen to boaters not wearing a life jacket. And a disproportionate number of the fatalities occur during the months of November through April. During these cold weather months, boaters, says the PF&BC, are at risk due to the water temperature and the risk of sudden cold water immersion.
“When a person is unexpectedly plunged into cold water below 70 degrees F, the body’s first response is usually an involuntary gasp. Without a life jacket, a victim may inhale while under water and drown without coming back to the surface,” says Ryan Walt, PF&BC Boating and Watercraft Safety Manager. “If an individual does make it back to the surface, his ability to swim is usually restricted because of a shortness of breath or hyperventilation.”
Anglers and boaters who plan to fish, boat or hunt from a boat this fall or winter, are encouraged to follow these cold water survival safety tips from the PF&BC.
* Always wear a life jacket, even when not required. Many models also offer insulation from cold air. Read the life jacket’s approval label to be sure it’s appropriate for your boating activity.
* Never boat alone if you can help it.
* Leave a float plan with family and friends and know the waters you plan to boat.
* Bring a fully charged cellphone with you in case of emergency.
* Wear clothing that still insulates when wet, such as fleece, polypropylene or other synthetics.
* If you are about to fall into cold water, cover your mouth and nose with your hands. This will reduce the likelihood of inhaling water.
* If possible, stay with the boat. Get back into or climb on top of the boat.
* While in cold water, do not remove your clothing.
* If you can’t get out of the water, get into the Heat Escape Lessening Posture (HELP). In this position, individuals bring their knees to their chest and hug them with their arms.
* Once out of the water, remove wet clothes and warm up as soon as possible.
* Seek medical treatment when necessary. Some effects of cold temperatures can be delayed.
Tom Marchetto, of Wilson Boro, made his yearly trip to Pulaski for salmon and Cohos and gave this report.
“Due to drought and low water conditions in New York state, the water flow at the beginning of the month was only 185 cfs. Water temperature was in the 60s and not conducive for the salmon to run the river. The lower end of the river (DSR, Town Hole and Staircase, for those anglers familiar to the area) had the most action. Our crew of five guys managed to land 13 salmon - 3 Cohos and 10 Chinooks (King Salmon). The one 22-pound coho I caught at the Staircase fell to a #4 Mustag hook with rubber egg on 10-pound leader. It’s not typical to land a coho this large, so it was a treat for me. The Chinooks were even larger. Upon leaving, reports indicated substantial fish starting to enter the lower end of the river.”
Since then and by now, Pulaski fishing should be in high gear.