boat ramp

Boat Ramp Etiquette

boat rampHave you ever experienced Ramp Rage or been on the other end of it? Ramp Rage occurs when a boaties patience is tested when boat ramp etiquette is not followed. Following good ramp etiquette helps alleviate queues, wait time and improves good humour among all at the ramp.

Be Prepared

The most common misdemeanour and the one that causes the most congestion is unpreparedness. This poor form is evident when boaties launch down the ramp then undo shackles, test unused batteries, remove trailer lights, fit bungs and get ropes organised. Some misguided people even stop to load eskies and fishing gear. Watching this unfold can be very trying to even the most patient boatie.

Most boat ramps have preparation bays where you can see to all those last-minute things before you launch your boat into the water. Use these bays to get ready for a day of boating and don’t be afraid to start your motor up to check to see if it is running.

Practice Makes Perfect

Do you get performance anxiety when you’re launching your boat? Practice really does make perfect, or at least progress, so head to your local boat ramp on a quiet day and practice launching, retrieving and reversing the car down the ramp with your trailer and boat. We assure you that everyone at the boat ramp will appreciate your seamless launch!

Stay Between The Lines

Once you’ve got your boat ready (bungs in!) and it is your turn to launch make sure you stay within your marked lane if there are lines or leave enough room for other boats if the ramp is wide enough for two. We suggest you don’t hog the space or jack-knife into anothers lane. Once you’ve got your boat off the trailer you need to move the boat off the ramp as fast as possible and then park your car.

Common Courtesy

Good manners pay off in the water and on land so if you see a fellow boater having trouble don’t be afraid to ask if they need assistance and vice versa if you’re the one in trouble. Remember that we were all beginners once so if everyone pulls together you’ll get on the water much quicker.

Photos by Geoff Penaluna and Jon Bragg.

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