Your alarm screamed at you at 5:00 am. It didn’t matter as you were awake and ready to go since 4:30! You grab your coffee and head out the door thankful that you packed all of your items and hooked up the boat and trailer the night before. This was done so you wouldn’t be wasting precious fishing time. It’s a two hour drive to the lake and you are not going to waste one second of it!
Finally you are making your last turn into the boat launch. You are quite excited as you are the first one there. You pull over to the side to uncover the boat and get things organized before you launch the boat. As you are getting into your truck you see another truck and boat pull into the launch, do a quick U-turn and back up within ten feet of the concrete pad. Then you notice two anglers get out and start “getting” their boat ready!!! You now know you will be delayed for quite some time now!
How many times has this happened to you?
With this being said it’s important to know that users of a boat launch will most likely know they won’t be the only ones utilizing the area.
There will be other people who will be launching water craft throughout the day. Therefore when you arrive at a launch pull over to the side to get your boat set up to launch. This includes taking the cover off, loading items, putting the plug in and undoing the transom straps. Another good tip is to unplug your trailer lights before submersing them.
Once your boat is ready to go proceed to the launching area. If there are two of you, have one person back the boat in while the other guides you.
Once your boat is at the water’s edge, have the boat owner unhook the winch strap at the bow and get into the boat. When you are ready to back up proceed slowly. The driver must follow the directions of the person in the boat. Usually a tap on the brakes will set the boat a drift and the person in the boat can guide the boat to shore or dock if available.
The driver of the truck should park the truck and trailer is such a way that it is not in the way of other users and trying to leave as much room for others when they require parking.
When you are finished for the day load your boat onto the trailer and attach the bow strap. Winching your boat up should at most times align your boat straight. If not you can straighten your boat by using your big motor. If you need to move the boat to the left turn your motor to the right and give a short burst of throttle. This will move the boat to align on the trailer. Be very careful using your big motor to do this. And only use this method if you are comfortable doing so.
Once the boat is on the trailer and secured with the bow winch strap move the boat to the side and pack it up. This will allow others to be able to use the launch.
With this information in mind we can all use the launch in a timely fashion.