Marsh Sense – A Clinic

The 2023 Marsh Sense Clinics are now being filled. Learn the basics of successfully wading and fishing in the tidal marsh environment and, above all, doing it safely.

With John Mathews

– With water temperatures rising and fiddler crabs becoming more active, the tailing red/wading season for 2024 is upon us. John is now scheduling clinics for the 2024 season, so sign up now and secure your place in this very popular program! The registration form can be completed at the bottom of this page.

Along the Atlantic coast of the United States, there are salt marshes and tidal creeks from Maine to Florida. South Carolina has approximately 400,000 acres of salt marsh, 200,000 acres of that total are in Beaufort County. The marshes of Beaufort County and elsewhere in the Lowcountry are unique from most others in that the tidal range averages between 7 and 9 feet. Wading most of the marshes of the Lowcountry can leave you stuck knee deep in “pluff mud” and can only be accessed by shallow draft boats. But some are “hard bottom” flats that can be accessed on foot and safely waded. Knowing the difference can lead to a rewarding and enjoyable time sight fishing red fish. Not knowing the difference can lead to needing a rescue crew to get you out.

Marsh Sense is a clinic being offered by long time Sea Island Fly Fishers (SIFF) member, John Mathews. John has made close to 500 wading trips into our local marshes and is well positioned to educate club members in the basics of successfully wading and fishing in the tidal marsh environment and, above all, doing it safely.

Each clinic is limited to four (4) participants and a minimum $50 donation to the club is requested at the time you are scheduled for a clinic. The clinics are open only to SIFF members in good standing. When determined, the dates, times, and locations of the clinics will be announced to registered participants by e-mail. If there are over 30 participants registered, a waiting list will be established. A registration form is located at the bottom of this page.

Requirements to participate:

  • Must be a SIFF member in good standing
  • Must have a valid SC saltwater fishing permit if you plan to fish.
  • Must be able to walk for 3 miles at about 1/2 pace with occasional stops.

Required Equipment:

  • Must have proper footwear !!! Examples: Orvis Andros Hiker, Simms Ziplt Bootie, or Simms Flats Sneaker or similar footwear. These are available at Bay Street or search online.
  • Must have an equipment pack: fanny pack, small back pack, or sling pack.
  • Two bottles of water (8 or 12 oz.)
  • Food (Granola type bar or favorite snack)
  • Sun glasses
  • Sun screen protection (sun screen, quick dry long sleeves or long pants, wide brim hat, gloves)
  • Fly rod(optional)
  • Emergency contact information.
  • Did we mention that you must have proper footwear !!!

Please Note:

  • You will be required to sign a Liability Release prior to participating in the clinic.
  • When you arrive at your scheduled session, we are suggesting a minimum $50.00 donation to the club to cover supplies and educational materials.
  • At this point in the season, registrations will be capped at 30 participants in an effort to ensure all those on the list have an opportunity to participate. If the 30 limit is reached, a waiting list will be established.

2024 Marsh Sense Clinics

May 1 @ 8:00 am - October 31 @ 8:00 pm

Currently Registered

Dennis SwansonGary ConlinRick McNamaraJack StevensSpencer BarrowStephen ScarffDiane SenneyChristian KingJoe JaniukPaul Cichanowiczwm scott carrrussell williamsPaul Bogdan
John NeelyBeck SmallBonnie DownsEllen StevensGarrett LewisAndrew AguilaGregory HamiltonGregory CarterWilliam A DespoBrandan ScullyCharles Ruggieroken nyser
Attendance: 25 / 30


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2 thoughts on “Marsh Sense – A Clinic

  • 10/25/2021 at 6:56 pm

    I have attended Johns presentation a few months ago, but a lot to learn, I may need this again. Looking forward to this.

    • 10/27/2021 at 8:31 am

      John’s presentation is very informative. You are right, it’s a lot to absorb!


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