Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Sunglasses! Sunglasses! Sunglasses!

In preparation for this years IHSA bass fishing tournament sectional, the coaches, boat drivers, and fishermen were again advised about the importance of boating safety. A checklist was given to each boat prior to the days events and a safety inspection was performed by the Illinois Department of Conservation at the launch sites.

Not only was this for the obvious reason to avoid any potential accidents, but also as a teaching tool for the students to learn how to be safe on the water. The boating safety checklist included common boating items such as PFD's (Personal Flotation Device), fire extinguisher, sounding device, anchor, flares, first aid kit, battery post insulating covers, live wells (for the bass of course) and last but not least was protective eye-wear.

I always wear a pair of polarized sunglasses when fishing because it allows me to see structure under the water that would normally be invisible. Polarized glasses help to reduce the glare from the water's surface, allowing me to quickly spot, logs, weeds, rocks, etc. that are all natural fish attractors. But I also wear sunglasses to protect my eyes from the elements of the sun, wind, rain, bugs, and debris that could ruin a good day of fishing.

This past Sunday while fishing on my boat with my good friend Rich and one of his buddies, I was once again reminded as to the importance of those sunglasses. For whatever reason, Rich on one of his back-casts didn't  remember to look, or was just so focused on his fishing, that he forgot where I was standing in the boat. The forward motion of his cast launched the lures (demon spinner) treble hook into my nose! After a very loud OUCH, and a few expletive deleted, we assessed the situation and began to perform surgery as if I was a fish and Rich was trying to perform CPR (catch, photo, release).

One of the three hooks went into the left side of my nose and back out the same side, past the barb! The other hook had entered through the left nostril and was too far in to be seen but had not come all the way through. We decided to cut the one exposed hook and pull it all the way through, with hopes that it would be a clean enough cut to not do any more damage. It came out fairly easily and I looked no worse after that removal. The next one was going to be a little bit harder to get out, and the decision was made to pull it out the same way it went in. After asking me if I was ready, Rich pulled it out very quickly, and other than a little bit of bleeding for about an hour, I was good to go.

The first aid kit was brought out to use some alcohol wipes and a bit of antibiotic ointment, and after that chaos we decided to head to the bar for a beer and a good burger. It wasn't until the next morning that I noticed the scratch on my sunglasses. When we looked at where the other two hooks had landed, and figured where the third hook probably scratched the sunglasses, we could only imagine that it might have been worse.
I am so glad that I was wearing my Strike-King sunglasses. Rich apologized for the rest of the two days, and I didn't have to pay for any more food or drink for the remainder of the trip.

As always we managed to have a good time, laughed (at Rich's expense) and caught a few fish too! But the best part of the trip was knowing that by following a good safety tip I avoided the possibility of doing some severe damage to my eye, and that helped me really enjoy those all you can eat crab legs for dinner (at Rich's expense).

Thanks for visiting us at Cappy's Pond! Take your Mom fishing this weekend, and remember that you can't catch any fish if your line isn't in the water.            


  1. Wow, now that is being cool under some stress, Cappy! Happy to hear that you had no other serious injury other than what you described. Strike King ought to send you a new pair for the use of your story here!

  2. Good idea Mel. I will have to lure them into this post and let them use it. Maybe a photo of the shades will help? I like it.

  3. My first flyfishing instructor told us that the most important piece of equipment was the sunglasses...He said never to put your flyrod in your hand without putting your glasses on first! Heal up fast! : )

  4. I'm all healed up. Time to go fishing again!

  5. i second that, kinda like the time i hooked my arm or when i slice 3 fingers open in a northerns mouth. just keep fishing

  6. I really like polarized lenses, hope you heal quickly my friend!


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