Similar to how a garage is for cars, a lift is for boats. Docking your boat on a lift protects your boat from natural elements as well as from other boats. Regardless if you're a beginner or an experienced boater, docking your boat can be very challenging based on the day's environmental factors you're faced with.
If you're unsure exactly how to dock your boat on a lift, we're here to with helpful tips to help you get it right every time you're coming in from a great day out on the water.
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Tips for Docking Your Boat
Monitor Your Boat Speed
As you're approaching the dock, make sure you're going at a low speed. You don't want to accidentally hit anything or cause an accident with another boat. On the flip side, going too slow could cause problems since you will need enough power to overcome the wind and current. A great tip is to apply short bursts of power, rather than going at one constant and steady speed. That way you can easily maneuver the boat and stay in control rather than losing control.
Position Your Boat Correctly
Before you apply any power, always make sure you turn the wheel to where you'd like to go first. This will prevent you from moving too fast going forward or backward. Even if you're a positioning professional, the current can change things very quickly!
Factor in the Wind
Heavy winds can make a huge impact on the ease of docking your boat. If you feel like the wind has swept you in a direction you didn't want to go in, don't be afraid to back up and start the process all over again. Use caution in high wind situations to protect your boat and others around you.
Get a Feel for Momentum
Boats in motion have momentum, so once they're in motion they stay in motion. It's the same way with how they turn, once they're turned they continue to turn. The driver has to get a feel for practicing speed and turns based on their boat type and their individual style.
Perfecting the skills and techniques of docking a boat takes time and practice. Be patient as you set sail on your path to becoming an expert. Close quarters, other boats, wind, turns, speeds, and other environmental concerns are all aspects that you'll need to be aware of when maneuvering your boat into the lift.
Remember, the best way to get better at docking your boat into a lift is by practicing on the water, not by reading articles, so take our tips and get out there! For more information contact Duncan Seawall today.