Boating can be a great recreational hobby to enable you to spend a beautiful day outdoors. Whether you are fishing, whale watching, or leaping off the side to take a swim, here are some tips to take along for the ride. As a new boater, you want to have a great time, but you also you want to be safe. Even if it just you’re sailing around the lake, take note of what you can do to maximize your time out on the water.
Of course you can grab your inflatable boat and go, but you should double-check to see what you need before venturing out. Once you’re in the water, you don’t want to realize you are missing something, especially if it’s important. Take a bag filled with items that can assist you in a multitude of situations. In the event of sunny but cool weather, sunscreen may be easily forgotten, but you can still receive a sting from those ultraviolet rays. If the weather takes a stormy turn, have a poncho at the ready. If you decide to toss a line into the water, be sure your tackle box is ready for the adventure. You might hook the ever-excitable freshwater bass and snap the line, so have extra line stocked up in your box. Carry a sharp fillet knife for cutting the line if necessary, hooks and hook remover, and, of course, gloves so that you don’t end up hooking yourself. Have a variety of fishing poles and reels handy as well.
Get together an emergency kit. It should hold enough life jackets and flotation devices for all on board. A first aid kit can come in handy, and you can put one together yourself with some bandages, antibacterial wipes, first aid ointment, gauze, and anything else you feel is necessary for the trip. Stock your boat with plenty of water and nonperishable food. However take into consideration how much weight your boat can take on. Waterproof bags can come in handy for your personal items such as your cell phone, wallet, keys, and other things that might get ruined if waterlogged.
Don’t be up the creek without a paddle, or paddles in this case. If your motor blows, paddles could help you get to shore without jumping in and swimming. If you are going out in the ocean, bring a nautical map so that you can navigate where you are going and how to get back. One item you might like to bring onboard is a notebook to jot down what you do or wish to do. Especially if you’re fishing, creating a log of situations such as what you caught and how the weather was can help you in the future. You can use it as a guide or just something to look back on.
Check the weather before you go out. And if the skies turn ominous, turn back.
Abide By The Law
Have fun while boating, but follow the laws and guideline so that you and other boaters are safe. Retain the proper licenses that you and your watercraft need. If your state requires one, you need to take a boating safety course to get a license. It might be a good idea to sit in on one even if you don’t need to by law. It is always a good idea for you to have some knowledge about boating and the actions to take to be protected.