After spending many wonderful hours on the water, fishing, water skiing, wakeboarding or simply taking in the scenic views, there comes a time when you have to call it a day and put the boat back on the trailer for its journey home, and this requires skill and careful negotiation. A simple browse at some of the disastrous videos on YouTube shows entire towing vehicles submerged in water and a variety of other costly mishaps at the slipway. Leisure Boating went in search of the top tips to get your boat safely out of the water.
What’s the tide doing?
It is important to take careful note of the tide when you bring your boat towards the trailer on the ramp. The tide will have changed and the resultant water levels will also have changed. There could be a vast difference in the water levels when the boat is being readied for the trailer at the end of the day when compared to the levels at offload time.
Dropping the driver
Once the boat has pulled close enough for the driver of the tow vehicle to be deposited on shore or at the dock, move the boat away from the slipway if you are impeding other boats. Now attach a line to a bow cleat and one to the stern. A line to the stern cleat is necessary if there is strong current movement or crosswinds moving the boat from side to side.