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Many of us trailer our boats and the closer we get to the boat ramp the more anxious we are to get on the water. When we finally arrive, there are significant backups at the ramp. We have all learned to be patient. Many times it is a popular boating area or time of the day, but occasionally we experience the boater that has stopped in the ramp area to ready their boat for launch, blocking the ramp and causing a backup for everyone.

If you need to ready your boat for launch, pull into the parking or per-launch area. Every ramp area has a pre-launch spot where you can pull in and prepare your boat. A pre-launch checklist may help get you into the ramps quickly.

Check all the plugs, load fishing equipment, set up your downriggers, hook your electronics and double check PFDs and other safety equipment. As you back into the ramp, make sure the tie-downs are released and be sure to disconnect your trailer light plug from your tow vehicle. Get your boat into the water, secure it away from the ramp and pull your truck and trailer out and into the parking area.

When you return to the ramp, the same courtesy applies. Quickly fasten it down on the trailer, pull out of the ramp and head for the tie-down area. Courtesy at the ramp helps to make it a quick launch and retrieval for everyone.

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6 Responses to Ready For Launch

  1. Glenn says:

    The reason for disconnecting the trailer light plug is in the event there is a small crack in a lens or water somehow gets into the light or into the plug it could possibly cause a short/surge that goes back into your vehicle causing electrical damage to it.
    With all the computer electronics now on a vehicle this happening is remote but possible and you sure don’t want to have it happen while you are launching or pulling the boat out and have a dead vehicle sitting in the launch. Doesn’t take much to perform and just add it to the list of precautions.

  2. Capt. Fred says:

    Gary,
    Water and electric don’t mix well. Should a light lens leak or a connection get wet, you may blow a fuse or blow out a bulb. You could wind up driving home without brake or tail lights
    un- knowingly.

  3. Ed C. says:

    My best recommendation is to teach your spouse or partner to drive either the boat or tow vehicle during the launch or retieval of the boat. This saves a ton-of-time! A little education is all it takes.

  4. gary says:

    why is it necessary to disconnect your trailer light plug from your tow vehicle?

  5. Scottie says:

    Learn how to back a trailor before you get there and remember you are not the only one in a hurry going and comming be polite.

    • moo says:

      and please please split duties of driving car and boat with wife, child, friend or significant other. anyone can back a trailer or load a boat on and off ramp given the chance and practice

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