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Wading staff.... is it a must have piece of kit?

Joined:
2010/2/24 2:27
From Greensburg
Posts: 27
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So here's another newbie question....

How important is the wading staff?
How\when do you use it?
Do you have a full length that's on your back or floating in the current?
Do you have a collapsible? And how do you deploy it quick if you need it?
Better to buy or make one? I have several graphite Driver shafts laying around that might fit the bill for a one piece but may be a little short at 43" or so...

Posted on: 2010/4/7 0:40


Re: Wading staff.... is it a must have piece of kit?
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2006/9/9 9:29
From Monessen, PA
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On the very rare occasions I feel I need one, I fashion a unique wading staff from streamside deadfalls. I did make one for myself for the Smokies from an old ski pole, but I didn't like dragging it around. I would like a sturdy collapsible one that would stay out of the way unless needed, but I haven't prioritize it as a purchase.

Posted on: 2010/4/7 6:27
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Re: Wading staff.... is it a must have piece of kit?
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2006/9/8 9:35
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Like Jack, only on a few occasions have I ever felt I needed one. Last year it came to mind on more than one occasion. The type of water you regularly frequent plays a big role of course. I put it on my list of things to get for this year, just have not gotten there yet.

If you are just getting started probably not a priority.

Posted on: 2010/4/7 6:59


Re: Wading staff.... is it a must have piece of kit?
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2006/9/9 17:32
From Gettysburg
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I highly recommend a wading staff - not just for wading but to improve your footing out of the water. I'd say your stick would work at 43." Make sure you have a clip with lanyard so you can clip it to your belt freeing both hands for fishing. I used mine a lot yesterday as I was shoreline fishing and the banks were very muddy and slick and the stick helped keep my balance. My hip boots have felt soles and these really don't perform well on muddy banks. Many trout streams have trails along them but to get down to the water you'll have to scamper down a brushy slope, often with loose gravel/rocks. A wading staff/walking stick is very handy. I use an old broomstick.

Posted on: 2010/4/7 7:21


Re: Wading staff.... is it a must have piece of kit?

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2008/1/31 17:19
From Pretty much everywhere at some point, Thorndale today.
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I don't own one and have never carried one. There are times when having one along could have been useful, but I can easily get along without. I just don't think any advantage it gives you outweighs the hassle of carrying the dang thing. With a few exceptions, I feel the same way about nets.

Posted on: 2010/4/7 7:38


Re: Wading staff.... is it a must have piece of kit?
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2006/9/11 8:26
From Chester County
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I've fished since I was a kid and have never used a wading staff until the Jam last year. First time! (that dang fire ring will get you every time.....)

Posted on: 2010/4/7 7:49


Re: Wading staff.... is it a must have piece of kit?

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2006/9/21 0:02
From Pittsburgh
Posts: 4145
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Like Jack, on the rare occasion that I really need one, I pickup a natural wading staff.
Even though my knees have gotten pretty creaky lately, I just can't bring myself to carry one around yet

Posted on: 2010/4/7 8:41


Re: Wading staff.... is it a must have piece of kit?

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2006/9/12 21:16
From Suburban Pittsburgh
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I got one to help me walk out of the water and for wading just before I had my knee scoped a few years ago. It was a tremendous help during a 10 day trip to the ANF. I can't imagine that I'd have lasted without it.

Collapsible trekking pole is what I have, it was under 20 bucks. Shock pole with 2 locking adjustments and a strap on the handle to which I've attached a carabiner. Then just clipt it to my wading belt. Before I got this, I too looked for deadfall and would use that. It worked just fine.

As others have mentioned, the streams you fish will dictate whether or not you should use it. Not a requirement but never hurts to have one.

Posted on: 2010/4/7 12:00
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Re: Wading staff.... is it a must have piece of kit?

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2007/4/8 20:43
From Lehigh Valley
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For me, its a bit of extra insurance. The first time I needed one, I didn't have it.

So, I carry a collapsable one on my wading belt (something else I didn't bother with at first, either). Its there if I begin to feel uncomfortable, and so far I've used it 3 seperate occasions this year alone.

Perhaps its not essential for many, but as a man who doesn't trust his wading, it is for me.

Posted on: 2010/4/7 14:27
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Re: Wading staff.... is it a must have piece of kit?

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2007/1/2 11:55
From Bozeman
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I carry one when wading higher flows on tricky streams like penns or the salmon river.

They are very helpful in crossing angry rivers.

Posted on: 2010/4/7 14:27


Re: Wading staff.... is it a must have piece of kit?

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2009/12/17 20:43
From Souderton PA
Posts: 841
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I have a collapsible hiking pole that I got at one of the Mart stores that cost about $10. It has been really useful a few times and I just feel better knowing that I have it. It is also surprisingly useful for hiking

Posted on: 2010/4/7 19:22


Re: Wading staff.... is it a must have piece of kit?

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2009/11/16 19:34
From Nazareth PA
Posts: 995
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I never carried one because I read and felt that the noise scared native fish. That has changed since last year when I fell. I use one now and today it even saved me from a fall. Now I would sooner scare fish than swim with the fishes.

Posted on: 2010/4/8 16:33
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Re: Wading staff.... is it a must have piece of kit?

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2009/4/1 21:52
From Johnstown, PA
Posts: 4458
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Believe it or not , i'm an amputee , i lost my left leg below the knee in an accident in a steel mill , when i can get away without it i do , 'cause i find it gets in the way. When i do need one , like JackM , i find something , although over the years now i gotten many as gifts and use them too. I guess i'd say in answer that they have their place.

Posted on: 2010/4/8 17:45


Re: Wading staff.... is it a must have piece of kit?

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2006/9/11 11:39
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I guess I'm cheap because I could never convince myself to buy a 50 or 60 dollar folding wading staff, that being said I have found myself in situations where I wished for one. Certain rivers like the Yough., Little Mahoning and the Erie tribs can be quite tricky for the wading fisherman even if you are wearing studded felt soles. Last year I discovered a carbon graphite golf club with the head busted off in the back of my buddies truck ( I guess he had a bad day of golfing) and I asked if he would let me take it and he did. I took it home and epoxied an empty .35 rem. case with a stainless steel screw set through the primer pocket and attached an old cell phone charger cord to the shaft and the other end to a carabiner to clip on my wader belt. It turned out to be the Bee's Knee's of wading staffs! It is so light that you forget it's on your belt while fishing and it's sturdy enough to really put your weight into it when your struggling to move upcurrent in a rocky bottom streambed. As I grow older (and wiser, I hope) I find that I'm not as nimble as I was 10 years ago and it is a good safety feature to have that extra support when I'm alone on fast moving piece of water. I don't take it on every outing that I go on but if it's water I've never fished before, it's in the truck should I see the need to deploy a wading staff.

JA

Posted on: 2010/4/9 9:58


Re: Wading staff.... is it a must have piece of kit?

Joined:
2009/4/1 21:52
From Johnstown, PA
Posts: 4458
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The ones in the truck are like that piece of rock candy in "Little Big Man" just for lookin at.

Posted on: 2010/4/9 10:12



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