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Sun Protection: Don’t Forget Your Hands!

Most of us have had more sun in our lives than we need. I’m no exception and am also spending all or part of 70 to 80 days chasing smallmouth bass in Wisconsin. When out in one of my Jackson sit-on-top fishing kayaks or in my boat I look like I’m dressed right out of the Dermatology handbook. I’m dressed in long sun-protection pants, shirts, hat with brim, polarized sunglasses, buff to cover most of my face and sunscreen on the small portion that’s exposed.

One area many anglers don’t think about are their hands. Even if you are applying sunscreen your hands, and the backs, are getting blasted with the sun while paddling, casting and reeling, and that sunscreen is washing off after hours of grabbing your catch out of the water or from a net. Most of us are not reapplying sunscreen as we should. About 15 years ago I realized the backs of my hands were getting much more sun than need. This is when I discovered sun gloves to protect the backs of my hands during fishing and other outdoor activities.

There are a variety of products on the market, but I have used and loved Glacier Glove and their sun gloves. Before my kayak fishing, I began wearing their Islamorada and Abaco Bay Sun Gloves while fishing from my boat. In 2009 when I began seriously kayak fishing, I discovered their Stripping/Fighting glove designed for Fly Fishing. However, with the added material on the palm I realized these were the perfect kayak fishing and paddling gloves. Like the other gloves they provide an ultraviolet ray protection of 50+ and extra comfort while paddling, whether fishing or just for fun. In early spring and later fall the temperatures are cold in Wisconsin, so in cold weather I’ve loved the Alaska and Cold River models for added warmth.

If you are an avid kayak angler or just love kayaking, I’d suggest, along with sun protection in general, think specifically about protecting your hands, you’ll be happy you did.