If you have never fished the Hiwassee, a wading staff is like having third leg. Walking into this river is comparable to walking on a tight rope; If I am not mistaken the Flying Wallenda's get their training for the high wire acts by wading out in this river. The rock base of this river is cut back and slick as snot, I cannot tell you how many times I have seen guys without a wading staff go down in this river no matter how experienced they are. Whenever I go there with a new person, I ask them before we walk out, "got your wading staff?" When they say no, I break off a piece of the wild bamboo growing around the river and we are good to go. God placed that bamboo there for a reason, believe me I know!!!!!
God gave fishermen expectantcy so they would never tire of throwing out a line.