What to Wear on Your Next Fishing Trip

By  //  November 15, 2021

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Florida is home to some of the best fishing in the world. On any given day, you can find grouper, sailfish, spotted sea trout, king mackerel, tarpon, and several other fish ready to bite. But dressing for a Florida fishing trip isn’t quite so easy. You have to walk a fine line between dressing for the warmth and dressing for the wet.

Whether you’re a seasoned pro or just starting out, it pays to know what to wear. Ideally, you want clothes that are breathable, sweat-wicking and quick-drying or water-resistant. In this article, let’s explore your options for base layers, bottoms, outer layer, footwear and accessories. 

Grab a rod, wrangle some bait, start your motor and suit up. 

The Base Layer

Your base layer isn’t all that different from daily casual wear. You want a t-shirt, boxers and socks – the basics. 

But whereas cotton or polyester are appropriate for everyday clothing, you need something slightly more technical when you hit the water. The best base layer material for a fishing trip is undoubtedly merino wool. Sweat-wicking, breathable and quick-drying, merino wool clothing stands up well to the heat, water, and physical strain of a day spent fishing. 


Shorts or pants – that’s the question. Some die-hard fishermen swear by their pair of PVC overalls, claiming it’s the only sure-fire way to keep yourself dry. But PVC’s main drawback, at least here in Florida, is that it gets uncomfortably warm. 

That said, if you don’t mind a little water, merino wool shorts are probably the best way to go, especially in the summer. Alternately, you can find breathable waders online that strike a balance between water resistance and breathability. 

The Outer Layer

In the relatively cool months between November and February, you may need an outer layer – especially off-shore where the winds are high. You have several options here, from hoodies to PVC jackets. But the best option is probably a Gore-Tex rain shell, which keeps you dry without adding too much bulk. The only downside is that Gore-Tex can be expensive. 


Ultimately, the footwear you choose will depend on the season and style of fishing. Sandals are appropriate for most dock fishing and summertime boat excursions. If you’re fishing around the rainy season in May, or plan to wade into the water, you need a pair of insulated rubber boots. 


Finally, you need a few essential accessories to keep you warm, sun-safe and comfortable.

The top accessories to take are: 

■ Polarized Sunglasses to keep the intense glare from obstructing your vision

■ Neoprene Gloves for a tight grip and warmth

■ A Waterproof Watch so you can keep an eye on the time

And Sunscreen, because you don’t want to wind up the color of a cooked lobster

Before you head out on your next fishing trip, stock your wardrobe with the clothing mentioned above. Grab merino wool for your base layer, a pair of breathable shorts or waders, a Gore-Tex rain shell, boots or sandals and a few key accessories.