As you pack for your a International kayak fishing trip, there are a number of important items to consider. None of these items are more important to your comfort and the safety of your eyes than a good pair of sunglasses. Not just a pair of regular sunglasses, but Polaroid sunglasses. OK, lets dig a little deeper. There are three good reasons to purchase high quality sunglasses.
First, when ever you are casting with a fly rod, you should wear either safety glasses or sun glasses to protect your eyes from being damaged from a poor cast or someone else you may be near. You only get one set of eyes and one errant cast can end your expensive fishing trip right then and there.
Secondly, the sun is extremely powerful when fishing the saltwater flats of the Florida Keys, Costa Rica, Bahamas or Mexico. The closer you get to the equator, the more intense the sun becomes. Consequently, a good pair of sunglasses will significantly reduce both eye strain, which will reduce your energy levels significantly and you may spend less time on the water fishing because you are tired. Unprotected eyes can also suffer damage to the internal tissue of eye itself.
Third, Polaroid sunglasses give anglers a huge advantage in being able to see fish and other underwater features. Polaroid lens actually block reflected light off the surface of the water.
While it is fairly easy to make a case to include at least two pair of quality Polaroid sunglasses on your next kayak trip, keeping you glasses in in like-new condition is another story, especially if you wear prescription glasses like I do.
One solution is to order a pair of prescription (Polaroid) from your Optometrist or through any number of sun glasses manufacturers on the Internet. In my case, I can see up-close using bi-focal glasses when tying knot or sorting lures. Because I am far-sighted, I do not require Rx glasses to see far away, and I find myself taking my sun glasses off when paddling to a new fishing location. Using a retainer for sunglasses will help keep them from dropping over the side into Davy Jones Locker; sitting on them and breaking the frames just losing track of where they are. Then when you want them, you have to start searching pockets.
As an aside, I advocated each person developing their own system of keeping track of what equipment (nail clippers, long nose pliers, sun screen, extra leaders, fly boxes, buffs, lip gloss, goes in which pocket, and returning it to that pocket every time it is used.
The process of selecting a good pair of quality sunglasses should be as well thought out as purchasing a $700 fly rod. Take good care of them and wear them often while kayak fishing. You will be able to stay on the water longer with more energy and chances are, you will catch more fish!
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