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Fly-In Fishing Safety: Precautions & Emergency Preparedness

Fly-in fishing is incredibly exciting—you’ll travel into the rugged wilderness to fish in waters that have been almost untouched by human activity for hundreds of years.

There are, however, disadvantages to travelling far away from civilization to fish—namely, that there are very few services available near remote lodges. You won’t find any stores or restaurants in the area, and emergency services, while available, will take much longer to reach you.

This means you’ll have to take extra precautions to ensure your safety when fly-in fishing. Don’t worry—this article will help.

Listen to Your Guide at All Times

Whether you’re fly fishing or fishing with hooks, one rule remains the same: Listen to your guide. They know every lake, river, and creek in the area; they’ll know when to expect rapids, where wildlife likes to hang out, and which hazards you should watch out for.

Your guide should also be trained in first aid—they’ll know how to remove a hook that’s been lodged in your skin, and they’ll know the signs of hypothermia. Follow their instructions—they can get you out of emergency situations.

Check the Weather Before You Go Out

Does the forecast call for clear skies, sun, and a lot of heat? Be sure to apply sunscreen to any skin that might be exposed. Rainy weather coming your way? Know the signs of a storm, and bring your vessel back to land before things get too hairy. Find shelter immediately if the storm becomes severe. Catching fish? That’s a lot of fun. Getting caught in a storm? Not so much.

Bring Your Usual Fishing Safety Equipment—Plus a Little Extra

Talk to your lodge about what safety equipment they provide. You may need to bring:

  • Life jackets

  • A first-aid kit

  • And other essential safety equipment

Wear shoes or hip waders if you’re going to be fishing in the water—sharp rocks can cause serious damage to your feet. Polarized sunglasses, a hat and gloves, a light rain jacket, and other protective gear are also essential.

Typically, it’s a good idea to bring extra pairs of socks and fast-dry shirts and pants when you’re at a fly-in lodge—it’s not easy to get more clothing if yours gets soaked.

Anglers should also bring food—a little extra than you think you might need, in case you end up out on the water for longer than expected. Part of the joy of a fishing trip is occasionally eating what you catch, and shore lunches are often provided—talk to your guides about the meal plan for each day.


Accidents happen, and they can be even more serious when you’re catching fish at a fly-in fishing lodge. Be sure to have emergency contacts at the ready, bring any prescription medications with you to the lodge, and understand how you can reach emergency services like STARS when you’re in a remote location. Most lodges should offer satellite phones if necessary.

You’re out there to catch fish—and with a little planning, you won’t have a lot to worry about. Visit our fly-in Arctic Grayling fishing lodge in Manitoba for an unforgettable experience—and stay safe out there!

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