Boating Courtesy

September 23, 2011

Editor’s Note: Thank you to Craig for sending these suggestions. It is easy to forget or sometimes to not even be aware of how our actions may be impacting others.

Most boaters know how to enjoy themselves on the water and still be respectful of others around them. But the more I cruise, the more I realize that the rude ones don’t even know they’re being rude. Small changes in behavior don’t diminish anyone’s fun, but they would make other’s boating lives much better.

1) You pull into a large bay to anchor and drop the hook so that you come to rest within 10 yards of me, even though there is LOTS of room elsewhere in the bay. Unless I have invited you to raft on to me, please pull up your anchor and reposition yourself so that I can enjoy my solitude.

2) If you use a generator while at anchor, read #1 again. Don’t tell me that your generator is "really quiet," and that "you can’t even hear it inside." I don’t care if you don't hear it, the noise from its exhaust drives me crazy when you’re right next to me and it runs for several hours. I don’t have a generator, and I love the peace and quiet of evenings at anchor. Please take your noise somewhere else in the bay.

3) Do you know that voices and music carry over the water, especially as the wind dies down in the evening? I can pretty much guarantee that your absolute favorite CD in the world is not mine, and I don’t really care to listen to it. I wouldn’t tell you not to play music, but please keep the volume down. And talk with your friends in quiet tones.

4) Is your boat fast? Great! Please steer it at least 50 yards from my slow moving trawler when you pass me. You will still get to where you are going quickly enough, but you won’t cause me to rock and roll, sending everything flying off my counters and knocking my passengers off their feet. Once in a while, look behind you as you pass another boater to see what your wake has done to them – you should see some minor waves lapping along their sides, and that’s all.

--Craig

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