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Big water/bad weather boating advice thread

Discussion in 'Boats, Blinds, & Gadgets Forum' started by billblack, Dec 13, 2010.

  1. Cducker77

    Cducker77 Senior Refuge Member

    Nov 11, 2007
    52.34N 4.56W
    All great tips for sure.Another good idea is to have a spare anchor,in case you lose an anchor and the engine were to fail you'd have no means to stop the boat adrift.Also cut the bottom off a windshield washer fluid jug and keep in the boat as a hand bilge if the bilges were to freeze up or fail.
    I also like to check the marine forecast for the day or two after the day I plan on hunting just in case the meteorologist blow the forecast and that weather were to blow in early.Sometimes it sways my decision on how far I want to venture out.
    billblack likes this.

    ALMODUX Elite Refuge Member

    Sep 4, 2002
    77's post about anchors needs emphasis. Anchors are just as important as a motor, IMO. I'll always have more than one, and one will be rigged as an emergency drag anchor, usually with some stout bungee to take wave shock and help keep the bow into the waves. Too many people take their motor for granted, and if you lose propulsion, lack of bow control will kill you quick. Around here, you will get blown into a bank before too long. Being on top of the water when you get there is the issue.
    billblack likes this.
  3. duckslyr

    duckslyr Elite Refuge Member

    Dec 28, 2003
    Nor Cal
    Great thread guys I don't have much to add because I'm just doing the homework now to buy my first boat but am interested in reading all that you have to share. Thank you :tu
    billblack likes this.
  4. HaydenHunter

    HaydenHunter Elite Refuge Member

    Dec 4, 2000
    Hayden Lake, ID USA
    I run a Rule 2000 GPH bilge pump and have always believed in large bilge pumps. But the idea about running duals is a good one.

    I have a dunk bag with dry long johns, sweatshirt and socks to put on in case someone goes into the water.

    I buy my life jackets in XXXL so that they can actually be worn in comfort over full hunting clothing / jackets by those in my boat.

    The manual bilge pump idea (gallon jug with the top cut off) is a good idea...kept me afloat for years running whitewater in a canoe. Doubles as a urinal during a boat blind hunt.
    Ghetto Slaya and billblack like this.

    H2OFOWLR Elite Refuge Member

    Jul 16, 2003
    Greenville, NC
    Float Plan...I forgot this. This is a must. In fact it is so important that the WildLife Resources Commission here in NC actually has a template you can download. Just print it, fill it out and leave it on the kitchen counter before you head out (or in the truck as stated). I always make sure my wife knows what launch I am using and approximately where I am hunting.

    Here's a link to the boating checklist which has other links for things like float plans, etc -

    Float Plan -

    Good catch Billblack :tu
    billblack likes this.
  6. MissedAgain

    MissedAgain Elite Refuge Member

    Dec 2, 2002
    Orlando, FL
    Yes - Plans. My wife knows exactly where I am at most times - I show her on Google earth as well - I'll be here or here or here and will be in touch by XXX. I also do this with deer hunting and when I work on private property.

    From personal experience... When my cousin & I flipped the canoe in the icy waters, my fingers were numb before I could untie my pak boots, my 1 piece snow suit grabbed all the water it could and we headed towards the bottom. The throw cushion (flotation) an my life jacket both had to pull double duty as I had to do double duty to try and swim with all the extra stuff on. Thankfully we both made it to shore.

    Hypothermia is a bear to deal with - I'm kinda stout and was freezing but my cousin (thin guy) lost motor skills, the ability to speak, and was weakened by it. A simple drying, change of clothes, and a fire might not have been enough for him had he been alone - we got him to his brother's house and into a hot shower for a long time and then hot liquids to get his core temps back up.

    As for playing in waders - we did the waders thing on the ice. Wore waders with a tight wader belt and a big life jacket - pushed a 14 ft aluminum boat across the ice while leanign over it in case the ice fell thru - several times it did and we would fall and catch on the sides of the boat or jump in.

    The first thing I would do if falling out of a boat in waders, would be to ditch them - unbelted waders are a death trap if you can't get out of them.

    Last comment - always carry a knife and have one available, easily reached on board. We used to night fish around lobster pots in New England - they'd get wrapped on the prop and maybe a wave would come over the back - had to be able to cut the rope ASAP....
    billblack likes this.
  7. smashdn

    smashdn Elite Refuge Member

    Aug 13, 2004
    Palmyra, KY
  8. FOWLER267

    FOWLER267 Guest

    Neroprene waders float like a cork and help stave off hypothermia which will kill more duck hunters than drowning.

    The gallon jug bailers should be standard equipment as bilge pumps are usually froze up when you trully need them..
    freefall and billblack like this.
  9. FowlShot

    FowlShot Elite Refuge Member

    Oct 20, 2003
    Second Fowler -

    I don't think you want to ditch your Neoprene waders.
  10. waterswater

    waterswater New Member

    Aug 14, 2009
    This is the best thread I have seen since I have been on here. The only thing I can add is when something does go wrong, I have found that it happens quick. I know there is no way to prepare for it but just stay on your toes when the cirumstances are bad and if you have people new to hunting on the water make them aware of the situation at hand.

    Good call on the road flares billblack I will be adding them to my box today.
    billblack likes this.

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