While I have had a few extreme adventures in a wetsuit (stories for another day!), I mostly think of myself as a conservative, safe wetsuiter. I’ve been at it for more than 30 years, always practicing, always learning, and ultimately gaining experience and confidence to wetsuit in most conditions. I am also disciplined enough to know when NOT to swim out which is, perhaps, the smartest decision any wetsuiter can ever make.
I started fishing at a time when rubber waders and a Helly Hanson pullover rain jacket were the norm, and your surf belt was your lifeline. I didn’t see my first wetsuiter (a surf fisherman who swims and fishes in a wetsuit) until I fished Montauk in the early 1980s. There were not that many of them and they were all hardcore guys. I remember one evening fishing near the Montauk Light at dusk, waiting for the fish to come in. The first signs of this were the bent rods of the wetsuiters on the offshore rocks. A couple of days later, I was fishing at first light when a wetsuiter swam in from a night of fishing. He had gotten a couple of mid-twenty pound fish while the shore guys (including myself) went fishless.
I was starting to see the potential of wetsuit fishing. I asked him how he got into it. He said he went to one of the more experienced guys and asked him to teach him how to wetsuit safely. He assured the experienced wetsuiter that he didn’t need to know any fishing spots – he would find those for himself. That was how he got started in a new, totally different fishing experience.
I felt disadvantaged because in my home waters of south shore Rhode Island, unlike Montauk, there were very few, if any, wetsuiters at the time. It did not help that I was driving from western Mass, 2 ½ hours away, and didn’t know many Rhode Island locals. Plus, you don’t meet many guys fishing at night; you may see a light in the distance, but you are not running up and introducing yourself. It was a time when many of the hardcore guys were still selling fish commercially so they were not looking for any new friends.
In 1987, when I started fishing Block Island, the majority of surfcasters were still fishing from shore in waders. The few wetsuiters I saw were also close to shore struggling to steer clear of the many shore fishermen; only a few were fishing well beyond any shore-bound anglers’ casts.
I had not yet totally taken the bit. When neoprene waders became popular I found that if I cinched my surf belt tightly around my rain jacket I could do some deep wading and some swimming without getting too wet. This bulky getup worked okay, but it was nowhere close to ideal. I needed the weight of my strap-on Korkers because the buoyancy of the neoprene waders would flip me upside down. Then, on a November night on Block, I was finally pushed over the edge.
My buddy Rod and I were coming off the rocks in our waders having had a pretty good night. We each had several fish in the high teens to 20 pounds. Taking our place were three wetsuit-clad fishermen led by a man named Andrus. (You got it – Andrus bucktails!) And they pushed out well beyond where we had been fishing!
When I saw them the next day, I asked them how they did. Among the three of them they had 50 fish from 15 to 30 pounds! I was sold! The extra distance afforded by their wetsuits got them into more and bigger fish. That winter I bought my first wetsuit and borrowed one for my buddy so I’d have a swimming partner. That was 30 plus years ago and I have never looked back. Wetsuiting opened up my fishing world.
Without any wetsuiting mentors, I started off slowly – and sometimes a little aggressively/stupidly. I don’t recommend my “learned the hard way” approach, and hope that what you read here will cut hundreds of hours of hunt-and-peck mistakes for both new and moderately experienced wetsuiters alike.
Reading the Water
My first wetsuit was a used 3mm Farmer John with a top. I quickly discovered that it did not give me much buoyancy and I had to swim to stay afloat. I moved to a 5mm (thicker) suit that gave me the buoyancy and security I expected. With this additional buoyancy, I began exploring – swimming, finding rocks and fishing. I quickly found that wetsuiting in calm water was comfortable and relatively easy; this is the time to swim and explore for good rocks.
Big waves and strong currents are a whole other matter. Big waves make accessing the top of a high rock or maintaining your high perch once you’ve reached it, quite risky. Waves rise up as they hit shallower water. Waves get smaller and more manageable the farther out and the deeper the water. If big waves are breaking farther offshore and sweeping all the way in, that is a good indication that you will be fishing from the beach!
A “big wave,” that is, a tall wave, can be different for different wetsuiters. What is big for your buddy may not be big for you; what is big for me may not be big for another wetsuiter. It depends on your stamina, height, strength, swimming skills and experience. A good rule of thumb is to “play it safe” until you have built up your experience and confidence. Without such a learning curve, you risk getting beat up against the rocks. This was one of my hard-learned lessons. After swimming out of my league and being repeatedly beaten up by waves, I learned to better read the water.
If waves are big but in the range of doable, I will often watch the rock I want to access for as long as 20 minutes from shore. During that time I get a good indication of the size of the waves coming over said rock, and I can then determine if I will be able to handle those waves. Why 20 minutes? In that amount of time, you will see waves of different sizes flow over or crash into the rock. Usually, there are one or two waves that are much bigger than the rest. I learned that, for me, a wave waist-high or higher would likely sweep me off a rock – and I am 6’1” and 185 pounds in street clothes. Find your limit and stick to it!
Your definition of “big wave” should also be determined by the wave’s depth, meaning the measure of a wave when if first reaches you until it passes you by. From a bluff overlooking the water, the waves never look very big; only when you get to the shoreline can you better determine the height and depth of the waves. Sometimes, you will even have to be on the rock experiencing the waves to determine if it is safe for you to fish there. You may get swept off occasionally, but if the fishing is good enough you may be motivated to get back on and fish some more. If you determine the waves are too high to even get on the target rock, you would be wise to come back later at a lower tide and try again! I have found on some occasions that on a higher tide the waves can be much too big to stay on any rock. By coming back later in the tide, the waves are more manageable.
Fishing in big waves means you must always be on guard and scanning the horizon. If the horizon suddenly turns black, a big wave is on the way and you have to prepare yourself. I often have just enough time to pull my wetsuit hood up and brace myself! Or, it may seem like you are out of a wave’s reach while on a high perch, but there are occasional rogue waves that can take you right out. In that case, you will be tumbled from a higher-than-normal height and I can tell you from experience that is not a fun experience. Be smart and walk away from a spot if necessary.
Several times, I have been on Block for a week or more, and as much as I wanted to, I could not fish my favorite rock even once because of the size of the waves. Early one evening, my buddies and I were watching waves in the remaining daylight. Two of us determined that the waves were too big; the third wanted to give them a try despite our warnings. He got on the rock, lasting only two waves. According to the Doc at the aid station, he escaped with two cracked ribs. It could have been much worse!
In short, if the waves are too big for me, I am fishing in my wetsuit from shore. Even my friend Ted, an accomplished wetsuiter, swimmer and rock climber (who fishes from rocks l can only dream about) is leery of high rocks in big waves!!
In addition to big waves, currents are another critical water element. A current is water movement primarily caused by moon and tides. Currents are a good thing from a fishing perspective because stripers like to feed in moving water. Currents are only bad when you are swimming and caught in one! Even subtle currents can makes for some hard swimming, or worst case, can sweep you into a bay or out to sea
It is important that you know the direction of the current as well as its strength. The more extreme the tide and conditions, the stronger the current. Current is important because it can impacts the direction you swim to get to an offshore rock and what direction you will go if you get swept off a rock. On a dropping or rising tide, the current may be moving right or left. If you are fishing on an Island, it may move directly offshore from where you are fishing. You can determine the direction a current is moving when you retrieve a cast plug. The direction it returns to you on your retrieve indicates the direction of the current.
When you cast your plug, the level of resistance you feel determines the strength of the current. A new or full moon brings big tides and strong currents. You will have your strongest currents if a storm, or big waves from an offshore storm, coincide with the new or full moon. A quarter moon with calm conditions makes for little current. If you are swimming with the current it can be hard to detect as the swimming is easy. Turn against the current and you will quickly learn how strong even a subtle current can be; it is almost impossible to swim against for any length of time.
I am not sure which concerns me more – big waves or strong current. I have been caught in both and they are both scary. You need to manage them properly to escape safely. If a current is moving you down the shoreline, move inshore to get out of it. If it is taking you out to sea, swim parallel to the shoreline to release yourself from its grip.
I have fished Block from a rocky bar famous for the number of big fish taken there. It fishes best with wind in your face and a big swell. You wade out on the bar as far as the waves and depth of the water allow. I have been out on that bar with the current sweeping across like a raging river. I was hardly able to keep my footing, but the fish were everywhere. Another time on the bar – in flat calm conditions – no wind and no waves – was like standing on the street outside your house. No detectable current and no fish!
Finding Your Rock
Good rocks can be hard to find. I have been exploring for fishable rocks for a long time – rocks that make good casting platforms, are comfortable to stand on for extended periods and, ideally, which do not have nearby rocks on your backside. You want to pick rocks that have a soft landing behind them to protect you in the event you get swept off by a wave. This way you are not getting banged into another rock and you can swim back to your desired rock and climb back on. However, if you are in calm conditions or moderate waves where there is little chance of being swept off your rock, rocks positioned on your backside may be okay.
Ironically, good rocks can be easier to find in big waves and harder to spot in calm water! The rocks you can see are the easiest to explore, but it’s also important to look in front of you for any disturbance that is left after a wave passes by. This disturbance indicates that there is something under the surface causing the water to break up. Hopefully, it is a nice flat rock right under the surface. Sub-surface rocks are best because they are not easily seen by other wetsuiters during the day, giving you a better chance to claim your own personal rock. However, it could well be a pointed rock and you will end up swimming back to the original rock you were on.
I generally fish off the first decent rock I come to. Then, while casting, I survey the water in front of me, always looking to push out further as long as the waves permit. If I see another rock in front of me and I am not getting any hits where I am, I explore the new rock, hoping that it will be flat enough to fish from.
Even in areas I know well, casting from rocks I have fished for many years, I am always looking for a better perch. A case in point: I fished for two seasons on a very uncomfortable pointed rock where 10 yards in front of me “My Rock” lay undetected! I often move down the shoreline without coming into shore. I swim from rock to rock, testing out the bite at each fishable rock. When no rocks present themselves I wade and bounce along in chest deep water using my buoyancy to easily move through the water. Until I move out deeper to the next set of rocks. Only when I run out of rocks do I move inshore.
Be sure to remove and secure your plug before swimming from rock to rock. Ninety percent of the time you will reach that next rock with no problem; the other 10% of the time, especially in bigger waves, you will wish you had removed your plug. Here’s is what happens: you will be swimming to a rock usually in bigger waves with your plug attached to your guide. Then, as you attempt to quickly get on a rock between waves, your plug comes free and sticks in your wetsuit or you become tangled in the loose line. Both have happened to me!
Securing your plug before swimming is an excellent policy though, in the past, I didn’t always do this. Then I read Zeno Hroman’s advice in which he said to remove your plug when moving from rock to rock. Now, when I’m tempted to ignore this practice, I hear Zeno in my ear. Now that I’ve said this, you will hear both of us in your ear!
When the fish are biting – FISH, don’t explore! I have fished an entire tide on one rock if the fish were biting. When I have the time, I scout new rocks during the day at low tide, marking suitable ones in a way I can find them at higher water at night. But, more often, I am arriving at my fishing destination after dark. In these situations I find new rocks while wetsuiting at night when the fish aren’t showing up. (For me, 90% of my fishing is done at night.)
I prefer the bigger water and rocks on the southeast side of Block, and have fished those waters with my fishing partners so much that we have named a few rocks to make it easier for us to pinpoint where we are getting fish at the time. My rock is “Gary’s Rock” or if I am referring to it, it is “My Rock.” There is also “Ted’s Rock” and we’ve named other rocks by their shape – Ski Jump, School Bus and Split Rock. Rocks usually don’t get named unless there are fish out in front of them.
These days, I often start my night on “My Rock’” and if there are fish, which is often the case, I spend a good portion of my night there. In the morning, my buddies ask “Where did you get your fish?” and I answer “My Rock.” They know exactly where I am talking about. There are named spots on Block Island that have become well-known – to the point of famous. We often change the name of those spots so we can talk freely about them without giving away the location of the biting fish!
My Rock is a good one – but hard to locate and not without its challenges. At high tide, it sits in waist deep water. Meaning, if you are standing on My Rock at high tide, you are waist-deep in water. That is my challenge – how early in a high dropping tide can I get on it? It sits on the front edge of a rocky bar/reef and the water around it is 10 to 15 feet deep depending on the tide, and gets deeper from there. There is a strong rip that forms out in front of it, making for very good fishing. But, if you fall off the front of My Rock the current can take you right out to sea! This has happened to me a few times, and it scares the “sh*t” out of me each time it happens. On a higher tide the current is subtle but strong, and you start to get swept out before you are fully aware of what’s happening to you. It takes my strongest swimming ability to get back near my rock and out of the current.
As the tide drops you can see a rip form. It is strong enough to cast a pike into it and just let it swim in the current without having to retrieve it. Or better yet, float it out in the current (as if you are fishing the outgoing flow at a breachway) and fish water that no cast could reach!
Another challenge with My Rock is that big waves build as they approach the bar, sweeping past, and sometimes over My Rock. It might be a perfectly beautiful night, but an offshore storm somewhere causes a big roller to head right to My Rock. Depending on the angle of the waves, sometimes they sweep just to the side. At times, when the waves sweep by head high, I can reach out with my 12’ rod and touch them, which can be pretty intimidating. Often, they just let me fish – until they don’t! It can be a really good lesson in humility: just because you are on a high perch, don’t think you can’t get tumbled by a rogue wave.
Accessing Your Rock
Spotting a good rock and actually accessing your rock can be two different things. If the top of your rock is easily accessible, either because it is just above the water or because the water is high and calm, you should have little or no problem climbing on.
My Rock and several others I fish, are easy to get onto in higher water – I just swim onto them. But on a lower tide, they have sheer cliff-like sides that don’t allow any purchase for climbing. So I use a technique I call “rock surfing” to access these rocks at a lower tide – but you need a decent swell to do it. First, make a quick swim around the rock to make sure there are no adjacent stepping stones that would make for easy access. When you have ruled out easy access, position yourself on the front side of the rock (with the waves coming from behind you). Your goal is for a wave to sweep you up and deposit you on the rock as it goes by. The key here is to judge the size of the wave and swim with it until you feel the wave will land you on top of the rock.
There is a definite learning curve to rock surfing. It is sweet when the rock slopes gradually upward preventing you from being slammed into hard stone. However, if the slope is steep, practice is your best and only friend. In earlier years, I have been slammed into rock faces, and more comically, swept right over the top of rocks, ending up in the water on the back side. In recent years, I have gotten pretty good at solidly hitting my landings.
Experience is a must as you learn what waves work best with what rock. The best way to gain this experience is NOT when you are fishing and catching; this is when you focus on the fish!! But on slow nights, take the time to rock hunt or practicing your rock surfing. Unfortunately, with the downturn in bass stocks, we may be in for some slow nights ahead. Do your homework and put in your time so you will be ready for when the bass return!
Fishing Your Rock
Once you’ve landed and steadied yourself on your rock, you can get down to the business of organizing yourself and your gear.
If you are on a rock you are familiar with, take a quick look around with your light to see where you are positioned on the rock. As always, pay attention in big waves as the bigger waves can be seen and heard as they approach. On a dark night when it is hard to see the approaching waves, suddenly the horizon will turn black, signaling a wave to come. You usually have time to buckle down your equipment and pull up your wetsuit hood if need be. If there is a good swell coming, position yourself at the front of the rock, or the highest portion of the rock, to best handle the wave. Stand sideways to it with one foot in front of the other, minimizing your profile to the front of the wave. Then lean into it. Another indication of a big roller is when the water around your rock suddenly recedes; in this case, you may have less time to prepare yourself.
If you are on a new rock, first be aware if there are any rocks directly behind you that could make for a rough landing should you get swept off. If there are, quite possibly you should find another rock. If all is clear, check the size of your rock and pick the best position from which to cast and meet the incoming waves. Then prepare as described above.
Remember, you are at your most vulnerable when your plug bag is open, you are changing plugs and/or you are not watching the waves. Learn to change your plugs quickly as that is the time when most big waves hit. Often you will have only a split second to decide whether to dig in and fight to stay on the rock, or go with the wave and let it deposit you in the water on the backside of your rock in a more controlled manner. If you fight the wave and are unsuccessful, you are likely to get wildly tumbled off the rock. This can mean trouble – tangled in fishing line or worse. The latter requires that you climb back onto your rock, but it usually prevents you from getting tumbled. Again, experience pays off with the knowledge of what waves to fight and which ones to flow with.
My Rock is unique in that two people can fish side by side on it, though it works best if one is right handed and one is left-handed, which I am. Over the years, I have fished with friends and a few strangers on my rock.
One night, I was into a lot of fish up to 28 lbs. and it was a steady bite. I started hearing a plug landing near me from someone fishing from behind me. I am sure he saw my light going on and off during the releasing of the fish. I was also sure he was not catching as the fish were pretty much out in front of me. I finally yelled to him asking if he was having any luck. “No,” was the reply, so I asked him if he wanted to join me on My Rock. “Are you sure?” he asked, a little incredulously. I said I was and turned my neck light around, pointing it behind me. I told him to swim for the light. I hooked up again and he arrived at the same time as my fish. I released my fish and got my new fishing mate settled on the rock. I recognized him immediately because we had met briefly at Twin Maples earlier in the season.
He had been fishing a needlefish for distance, but put on one of my Giant Pikes that he carried. On his first cast he hooked and landed an upper teen fish. It was close quarters, but I got a pic of him, the fish and the plug in a close up shot. We continued to enjoy the bite when another needlefish started landing near us. I yelled behind us and it turned out to be someone I knew, so we invited him out. From prior experience, I knew that there were two rocks sitting off to the side of My Rock in a line. They sit pretty deep and I can only access them at a lower tide which it was getting to be.
As my friend, Roger, got to my rock, I jumped off in the direction of the adjacent rocks. I was being careful, because that current I mentioned earlier is very strong on a low dropping tide. I made it to the closest rock pretty easily, but it is pointed and hard to stand on. I caught one fish off it, but I really wanted to get to the next rock – big and flat – but farther away. In my haste, I misjudged it and started to get swept out by the current. I could hear my friends casually talking on My Rock as I frantically swam nearby trying to keep from being swept out to sea!! With some strong strokes I made it back to the first pointed rock where I fished uncomfortably, but safely, until the tide played out at first light. Even with all my knowledge and experience I still managed to scare myself!!
I have found that it is better to go with a big wave while being swept off a rock because you can stay in control and land softly. When you fight to stay on a rock you most often will just get tumbled – ending up in an uncontrolled landing. I have seen guys tumble off a rock wrapped in line with one arm stuck to their side with a plug, and their legs stuck together with another plug – with other plugs floating around them. Not pretty and definitely a situation where it pays to be fishing with a buddy.
On another occasion, while fighting a 35” bass, it pulled me around after I had been swept of my rock. When it started to pull me out to sea, I loosened my drag, swam back to my rock, re-tighten my drag and landed the fish!
Moving Back to Shore
Heading back to shore it is impossible to avoid the big waves you’ve so far avoided by being far in front of them. I have not found the perfect way to return to shore in big waves. I try to stay aware of the size of the waves approaching me from behind. If they are really big and the water is still fairly deep I will turn and face them, and dive under them. As I move inshore and the water is shallower, I will just let the wave sweep me closer to shore, trying my best to avoid any rocks in the process. Try to move as quickly as possible in this situation, because you really are at the mercy of the wave. One time while I was returning to shore in big waves, a couple who were watching my light get knocked around from the bluff, rushed down to the shore because they thought I was in trouble. When I got to shore I assured them I was okay and they admired my fish!!
The Tools of the Trade
• A 5mm wetsuit is a good all-around suit to start out. I also have a 3mm for summer, and a 7mm for early spring and late fall. A wetsuit keeps you warm while it is wet. If you are fishing on a rock for a long time, your suit may start to dry out and lose its heat-keeping ability. If you want to warm up, you will need to dip back into the water to re-wet your suit. Not fun, but necessary if you want to warm up!
• For added warmth when needed, I wear a rash guard top or a full-length Farmer John rash guard under my wetsuit. When it is windy, I’ll also wear a light wind-blocking surf top.
• I wear wetsuit booties with aggressive soles with Korker sandals over them, though many guys just wear a wading boot. My set up allows me to remove my sandals, walk to my spot at the shoreline in just the booties saving wear on my spikes. I feel booties/sandals are a less bulky to swim in than wading boots.
• If you are deep-wading in warmer weather with no waves, a ball cap is fine. However, I recommend wearing a wetsuit hood to limit the loss of body heat through your head. In addition, this makes it easy to duck under big waves while swimming out or if you get swept off a rock.
• I have learned to fish in gloves both to protect my fingers while casting big plugs and to be able to grab the line while landing a fish. You don’t need to fish in gloves, but you should wear them to get onto a rock or the barnacles will cut up your bare hands.
• Wetsuiting requires efficient use of your equipment and tackle. Your big three-tiered plug bag stays on the beach! I can almost guarantee that the biggest wave of the night will appear while you are not looking or while changing plugs with your plug bag open. As careful as I am, I have been swept off rocks more than once, surfacing on the backside of My Rock with an assortment of my plugs floating around me!
• To use an airline term, limit your carry on! I carry a 2-tube belt bag and a larger 2-tube shoulder bag. I fish big plugs so this limits me to 8 plugs maximum (with 5 plugs in tubes and 3 plugs between the tubes and the bag). A quality plug bag makes for easy plug removal without the hooks getting caught in the bag material!
• I carry a folding fillet knife in place of a dive knife. I can bleed my fish if I am keeping any, and in the rare occasion I or a buddy get tumbled off a rock by a wave and become entangled in fishing line, the knife makes for an easier escape.
• A boga or other tool to control a caught fish is a must. If you are a plug fisherman on a rock in waist deep water and the fish you are fighting comes riding in on a wave right at you, you must secure that fish, and release it without getting a hook in your hand!
I no longer use my boga (60 lb.) for weighing fish as hanging a fish off a boga is not supposed to be good for it. Now I use it only for securing a fish. It is secured to a lanyard attached to my surf belt; I do the same for my pliers.
• You will need a good waterproof light even if you are only deep wading. It is an excellent idea to have a backup as well!
• If you use a stringer attached to your belt, make it a quick-release attachment in case something bigger than you grabs a fish that is tied securely to your surf belt.
• I started with a 10’ rod thinking it would be easier to swim with, but found a 12’ rod is equally manageable. I also get some additional casting distance with the 12 footer! I started off using a Penn 704 that required cleaning the salt water out after every fishing trip. I then moved to a Van Staal, and now a Zeebaas. Both are sealed reels that just need rinsing after each trip – much more convenient!
• I fish using a 50 lb. fluorocarbon long leader, about 10 feet depending upon the length of the rod I am using. This serves several purposes. The first is if my fish goes around a rock, the more abrasion-resistant 50 lb. fluorocarbon leader takes most of the abuse. Second, when my fish gets in close I can easily grab my leader and secure the fish; I am not grabbing thinner braid/Fireline.
Many more fishermen are wetsuiting these days as they see the fishing potential of getting farther out, especially at low tide in a boulder field where the inshore rocks are covered with bubble weed making it impossible to retrieve a plug.
If you try out wetsuiting, you may find deep wading is all you want to do. That is fine. But if you want to swim, find an experienced wetsuiter for some first-hand guidance. Today, there are lots of seasoned wetsuiters willing to show you the ropes enough to get you started and help you build confidence.
I don’t recommend starting off independently, but if you do, start slowly. Begin with deep wading and work your way out. Get a feel for your wetsuit during the day, and only then shift to calm nights. Practice your swimming from rock to rock as well as climbing on and off some easier-to-access rocks. Only when your skills and confidence have been tested should you begin reading the waves and taking on farther and more challenging rocks.
One thing is certain. Wetsuiting will open up your fishing world. It has made me a more alert, canny and physically stronger fisherman. It has given me many nights of fishing excitement and other nights where I can stare at a starry sky and dream my dreams. For me, it does not get better than that.
IMPORTANT WETSUITING TIPS
Wetsuit with a Buddy. It’s more fun and safer! That said, you are often not fishing near him, so be diligent and fish safely as if fishing alone!
Shore anglers in-place prior to your arrival always have precedence. Swimming out and fishing in front of them, or cutting off their casting angles, gives wetsuiters a bad name.
Best Advice: Experience Counts
There is no substitute for experience. None. When I swam across the Canapitsit Channel in 2010, I had no prior references to go by. But I had been wetsuiting for a good 20 years by the time I did the swim. I knew my capabilities and limitations – which is critical to successfully managing any situation in which you find yourself.
A Rock Too High?
If conditions are flat calm, and your target rock is steep and too far out of the water for easy access, without some rock climbing techniques you’ll like have to move to another rock.
Wetsuits = Safety
Even though wetsuiting requires experience with waves and currents, gear for gear, it is hands down safer than waders! It is a buffer against the rough barnacles that coat the rocks and provides significant extra protection against big waves and strong currents. Whether you are swept off a distant rock, a breachway or are fishing from shore in big waves, your risk is far less and quite possibly life-saving in a wetsuit.
These days, with all the Great Whites around, be very mindful of how far out you swim
and fish. Sharks are not just in deeper waters. A recent article in the Cape Cod Times noted that Great White’s on the Cape spend 46% of their feeding time in water 15 ft. or less. And not all Great Whites are on at the Cape. In a recent podcast, Bill Wetzel, the noted Long Island fishing guide, said that because of the sharks, there were no longer any skishers on Montauk. And the deadly shark attack recently off the coast of Maine is a reminder that these sharks are moving around.