Float-tubing is a fun and exciting method of fly fishing that has now become established and accepted by over forty fisheries within the British Isles.
Float tubes were first used in the USA, and they allow anglers an affordable way of accessing areas of lakes and reservoirs that previously could not be fished without a boat. The original tubes started out as a converted tractor inner tube but have since grown into hi- tech flotation devices which suspend an angler comfortably in the water allowing an extremely safe position to fish from. The tube is propelled by fins worn on the anglers feet, and it takes minimal effort to travel around a water in normal conditions.
What is needed to start Float Tubing
Basic equipment consists of your normal fly fishing tackle, a float tube of your choice probably a Vee or U tube design, stocking foot chest waders, a life jacket of at least 120 Newtons capacity, and a pair of fins. A wooden framed pan net, and a series of simple 'lanyards' to tie loose equipment on to the tube are desirable.
It is possible to equip yourself with a basic kit of all this for around £200 today
Waders vary in quality and price more than any other part of your equipment.
The life jacket is an absolutely essential - you will not be allowed on the water with the BFTA if you do not wear one. The best style is the very compact braces type.
Choosing a pair of fins is relatively easy for the beginner. A standard pair of lace on or webbing strap fitted, 'caddis style' fins are relatively widely available in the UK. Sometimes these are given away free together with a pump as an offer on new tubes if you shop around.
Wooden pan nets have the advantage that they are compact and float on the water if dropped. Whatever net you use, make sure it is tied to the tube with some form of lanyard if you don't want to lose it overboard. Also use lanyards to tie other items to the boat like your catch bag, it's no use catching the fish if your going to loose them if their not tied on to the float tube.
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