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GUIDE: Boat Ramp Tips and Etiquette

I think everyone has experienced a bit of annoying time wasting at boat ramps before, and we all wished that there was a pamphlet given out to new boat owners on what to do and not to do when launching and retrieving your boat.

Boat ramps can be a highly stressful situation for some, especially beginners, with on-lookers watching your every move and feeling the need to not look like a goose in front of other boat owners. Trust me I’ve been there.

But with some basic tips and a little practice your boat launching can become a quick and efficient process, and most of all not infuriating for the other people waiting to use the ramp.

boat ramp etiquette

Here is a list of tips to try and think about next time at the boat ramp.

  • Prepare your boat for launching before parking in the ramp reversing area. i.e load all your gear into boat, take off all straps etc. Not doing this is one of the biggest things which can annoy other boaters who are waiting and ready to use the ramp. This is why they have the “get ready” parking areas, where you can organise your boat, allow others who are ready to launch before you, and then launch when you are ready.
  • Park your car in a way or location that allows people to get past easily, before and after you launch and retrieve your boat. There is normally room at all ramps to park out of the way when readying your boat, and also when packing it up.
  • Wave people past you if you are not ready to launch but they are.
  • If boating solo, after launching the boat try and tie the boat up out of the way for other ramp users so as to not hold them up,I know at some ramps this is not possible, but at most ramps with floating pontoons it is. Then proceed to clear the ramp and park your car.
  • A lot of ramps are now 2 lane ramps, so two boats can comfortably fit side by side. Ensure that you reverse your boat onto the ramp and leave room for others to launch or retrieve at the same time on these 2 lane ramps.
  • Team work – most of the time we fish with at least one other person, so we can use this to our advantage when launching and retrieving. Having someone in the boat ready to drive off the trailer and move the boat out of the way of the ramp, while you can park the car makes life much easier and quicker.
  • When retrieving the boat, drive or winch boat onto the trailer, secure it with the safety chain etc and then drive off the ramp and finish packing up and fully securing the boat away from the ramp.

boat ramp

If you see someone struggling to launch or retrieve always try and offer a hand, as these little bits of information they may learn off you will make theirs and others boat launching experiences easier in the future. I know it can be hard, but try and be patient with beginners at the ramp as boat ramp efficiency only comes with practice.

Hopefully these tips will help make your and everyone else’s boat launching a more enjoyable and less stressful experience from now on.

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Published on: October 13, 2014

Filled Under: GUIDE

Views: 5698

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