Boating is an incredible activity that can really bring together friends and family with a healthy dose of outdoor fun. But it can also be pretty daunting for newbies who aren’t sure of what they’re doing and are afraid of showing their inexperience on the lake.
In order to combat this insecurity, here are the top ten boating tips for beginners who are looking to get started:
- Take a boating class — When you were learning how to drive, chances are you had someone who was experienced to teach you how. Some of us went out with a driver’s ed instructor to learn the ins and outs of a car. The same is true for boating. Take the time to take a boating class or get someone with experience to help you learn the ropes. When you are finished, be sure to get your boating license so you can be registered.
- Get comfortable with the technology — There are a lot of new pieces of technology that will make the boating experience even easier. These include radar and other navigation tools that can really assist you in piloting the boat.
- Stock up on non-tech equipment — Before you go out, make sure that you have plenty of safety equipment — life jackets are a must, as is a first aid kit and a flare gun for emergencies. You will also want a good radio to help you stay in touch with the shore.
- Check the weather — Before you even think about getting out on the water, check the weather forecast. If there is a potential for bad weather, then hold off getting out there. Experienced boaters may have problems with storms…beginners should stay completely away from them.
- Launch your boat quickly — This one is the bane of many experienced boaters. Nothing says “newbie” quite like a person who takes forever steering their boat onto the ramp and taking forever to unload into the water. Do this as quickly as possible.
- Dress in layers — The weather out on the water can change in a moment’s notice, so dressing in layers is an easy way to ensure that you stay comfortable with any potential changes.
- Pack plenty of food and water — If you get hungry or thirsty on the water, there’s not a drive-thru you can pull up to for a burger. Pack plenty of food and water so you don’t have to pack it in early.
- Let someone know where you are going — If something catastrophic happens, you need to have someone back on shore who knows your plans. That way, if you don’t come back on time, someone can send a search party out to look for you. When it comes to boating tips for beginners, this one is often overlooked but is vital.
- Don’t drink and drive (or boat) — You would never dream of downing a six-pack of beer and then getting behind the wheel of a car. The same is true with a boat. Impaired boating can be incredibly dangerous not just for you but for those on the boat with you and those around you.
- Go slow — When you are in shallow water, you have to worry about swimmers and other possible hazards. Until you get out in deep, open water, you should keep your speed down. You won’t be able to stop on a dime if something goes wrong.
If you are a newcomer to the great activity of boating, you don’t have to let yourself get psyched out because you don’t know everything. Following these boating tips for beginners will help you get started as you become more used to fun on the water.
If you love being on the water, come visit us at Diamondhead Resort. Our community is right on the banks of Lake Catherine in Arkansas. Many of our homes have their own private boat slips. Find out more about our property by visiting our website: https://seediamondhead.com/