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Summer of 2016 is upon us and folks are gearing up their boats and heading to the cool waters for rest, recreation and fishing. This also  means it is time to remind folks of some boat etiquette at the boat ramp.

First parking, swimmers need to park their vehicles in the swimming parking areas and Vehicles with trailers need to park in the areas designated for vehicles with trailers. It is extremely hard for a vehicle with a trailer on it to navigate around cars all over the parking area for vehicles and trailers. While doing so an unnecessary damage to a vehicle or trailer may occur. It also ties up too many swimmer parking areas if a vehicle with a trailer parks there.

Second have your things ready prior to entering the launch area.  This saves time while in the very busy launch ramp area. Also the launch ramp area is not an area children should be running around in, riding bikes in, swimming in. This is a safety issue. It is hard for a vehicle backing in a trailer to always be able to see small children. This also goes for pets. So, keep your pets secure in the launch area.

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After launching your boat leave the launch ramp area. This is not the place to be transferring things from the vehicle to the boat. Save passengers on the boat. Transferring things like coolers and tackle should be done in the parking area before entering the  launch ramp area or at your home. This saves time and confusion in the already very busy launch ramp area. Drive straight to the designated parking area for your vehicle and trailer.

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After enjoying your self on the water. The same etiquette applies while taking the boat out. While waiting for your turn to enter the ramp area. Get your items collected and organized that you will be removing from the boat. When the boat is securely landed back onto the trailer. Drive out of the ramp launching area and park in a safe secure area in the parking lot to unload your boat. This frees the ramp up of unnecessary people in the ramp area and opens it up for another boater to launch or remove their boat.

If it is necessary to talk to a fellow boater. Do so politely and use good language. Many little ears may be hearing and we all need to be mindful of the demonstration we are giving to little ones.

Lastly be understanding to the person who is just learning how to back up a trailer in the launch area. They will need extra time, extra space and encouraging words to accomplish this learned skill. Hope this helps everyone have a good boat launching experience.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author and are not not necessarily either shared or endorsed by

Mary Thompson

Conservative Christian from Central Wisconsin with a common sense practical application to the real world mind set. Married, Mother of two children and Grandmother to four. Worked for most of my life in the healthcare setting with a healthy interest in politics, religion, social issues and general wholistic well being.


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