“Do you wear sun protection?” That was the first question my doctor asked me when I told her I’d taken up fly fishing. Indeed I do.
I wear a floppy hat, fishing gloves, a neck buff, long shirt, and long pants when I fish because I don’t want to experience the multiple basal cell carcinoma surgical procedures my dad experienced in the final years of his life. He grew up in the sun worshipping decades after WWII when a healthy tan was equated with good health and vitality, going to extreme measures, such as sitting in the backyard with an aluminized sun reflector to get a tan on his face.
A key element of my sun protective clothing are my Buff Sports Series Water Gloves, which provide 50+ UPF Ultra-Violet protection against the sun’s rays that cause sunburn. UPF measures the amount of UV radiation that penetrates a fabric and reaches your skin. A fabric rated with a UPF of 50 will allow only 1/50th of the sun’s UV rays to pas through. In other words, it blocks 49/50-ths or 98% of the UV radiation. UPF 50+ is the highest possible rating.
Made with 95% nylon and 5% Lycra, they’re fast-drying, stretchy gloves with exposed finger tips for improved dexterity, an absolute requirement for a sport that requires knot tying. The palms are covered with a silicone print that is good for gripping slippery fish when I need to remove a barb-less hook. Silicone and rubber coated gloves and nets do less damage to skin, scales and the protective slime layer of fish and are recommended for catch-and-release style fishing. (Because they have a silicone grip, the Buff’s Sports Series Water Gloves gloves are better for catch and release fish than Buff’s Pro Series Angler 2 Gloves which have a leather grip.)
These gloves are great and I keep store them with my fishing tackle (lines and flies) so they’re always handy when I want to go fishing. Truth is, I hate touching fish, so I’m highly motivated to wear these gloves, which give me a good grip if I need to hold a fish to remove a hook, while providing much needed sun protection.
Disclosure: The author purchased this product with his own funds.