Launching a Power Boat
Tips for a smooth power boat launch
Launching a power boat can be fairly tricky, particularly when you have a line of impatient boat owners waiting behind you. Don’t let yourself get flustered – just follow some simple guidelines and you’ll look like an expert.
Perform any boat or equipment checks before you leave the house. Ensure that your boat’s drain plug is inserted and your bow and stern lines are easily accessible.
While you’re waiting in line at the boat ramp, move any personal items that you wish to take from your vehicle on board the power boat, such as clothing, food, beverages and towels. Attach the bow and stern lines to their cleats, and remove the stern strap that connects to the trailer.
The power boat launch
Slowly back your trailer in a straight line towards the boat ramp. Most people find it easier to look over their shoulder rather than just use the mirrors; you might also like to position someone outside the vehicle to help direct you.
Making sure you don’t let the wheels drop over the ramp edge, back your trailer into the water to around mudguard height, and disconnect your bow from the trailer winch.
Jump into your boat, start the engine and back the boat off the trailer, making sure there is nothing still attached. If you are alone, tie off your power boat and then – very quickly – park your vehicle and return to your boat so you can remove it from the launch area. If you have a passenger, one of you can park the vehicle and trailer while the other drives the boat to a safe pick-up point away from the ramp.
Power boat launch etiquette
Perhaps the most important thing to keep in mind when you’re attempting a power boat launch is to never take up more time on the ramp than you absolutely need to. If you’re loading your power boat or adjusting equipment when you should be getting out of the way, you won’t make too many friends at the boat ramp.