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SUBJECT: # 11997: Best way to lauch a boat by yourself?

Submitted by CBedo ( from COLORADO on 6/9/2006 2:07:00 PM

I thought I saw a post on this some time ago, but can't find it.

Just wondering if I am by myself, what is the easiest way for me to launch so I don't tie up the ramp for too long.


  1. 6/9/2006 2:37:00 PM Submitted by Bassmajic ( from OH says Here ya go!
    1. Back up your boat to the left or right side of the ramp. Which ever you feel the most comfortable with. Try to stay within a couple feet. 2. Tie a line onto your boat tie down and the other end on the trailer winch area (shoe lace style so you can get the know out). Anywhere that's easy to get to once you’re in the boat. 3. Back the boat in until its starts to slide off. You'll find a sweet spot with practice. 4. Now that you've backed up with your boat close to the dock. Simply jump in, pull the tie off the winch, tie up to the dock, and park your vehicle. OH! YOU MIGHT NEED TO TIE OFF ON THE BACK TO IF THERE WIND OR CHOP FROM OTHER BOATS.

    It goes pretty quick if its not crouded.


  2. 6/9/2006 2:43:00 PM Submitted by Allen ( from AL says Here's what I do
    After getting her ready I have a 25'+ rope I tie to the boat and then either to my trailer of make a loop and clip it to my winch cable. Back her down with a momentum (not much) so it floats off the trailer. Once it floats far enough back to clear, I pull forward a smidgen without pulling the boat forward with me(this is were a little extra rope is crucial). Now I can unclip/untie the rope without my feet getting wet and my boat is floating freely out of the way, I can then "lead" my boat with the rope safely out of the way. Most times there is still enough room for someone to launch will I'm parking as long as the dock is big enough. It really should only take a minute longer to do it yourself than with someone, although a little extra care has to be taken as to not scuff up your boat.

    BTW If some Ahole is perturbed because you are launching it yourself, then he can always help if he's in that big a hurry.

  3. 6/9/2006 3:49:00 PM Submitted by Dgp ( from GA says Cbedo
    The above suggestions are good,, IF THE DOCK IS CLOSE BY THE RAMP... We have ramps here where the dock isnt close by so heres what I do and to date I have not had a problem with anybody... lossen winch strap about 2-3 turns and LOCK IT... back down until boat floats off trailer... Dont worry it aint going nowhere because the winch strap is still attached,,, it should float back about a couple of feet at the most...get in and fire her up,,,pull FORWARD to give some slack in the strap,,, un hook and BACKOFF the trailer,, pull up to dock and tie up,,, RUN AS FAST AS you can to truck and park that bad boy,,,,then RUN BACK to the boat and GO FISH!!!!!!

  4. 6/9/2006 5:26:00 PM Submitted by jim ( from TN says Launching
    Can't help it but I feel it necessary to add my system. I've used it for many years and it works just fine. I get it all ready by removing all tie downs-including the winch strap(if the ramp is not too steep). I use a rope with a snap hook to tie to the front winch loop on the boat. I then run the rope back in the boat to the rear of the trailer making sure the rope is placed so it doesn't hang on any cleats or other stuff. I tie the other end of the rope to the rear of the trailer with a loop knot. I then back it into the water until the boat floats free. I then pull forward until the rope tightens and pulls the boat forward toward the ramp. I have a Hamby keel protector so I don't worry about the boat contacting the ramp. I pull the trailer completely out of the water, untie the rope at the trailer and then move the boat somewhere out of the way and secure it-either at a dock or by using the rope to tie to something on the side of the ramp if there is no dock. I park the truck and trailer, go back to the boat and go fishing. Works every time. JIM

  5. 6/9/2006 9:23:00 PM Submitted by beartrap from GA says here's an even easier way...
    install an anchor rein(some call it a bow rein) on the bow of your boat right behind the running lights......swap out that clip that comes with it for a big brass clip(you can buy them at Lowes or Home Depot)......merely snap it on the winch stand,back in with enough momentum for the boat to come off the trailer,once it floats free,pull up until you can reach and unhook your snap without getting your feet wet,pull your boat to one side of the ramp or the other and tie it off...the rope will retreat back into the anchor rein where it's out of your way and always there for the next time...handy for tieing your boat off to docks or someplace up on the bank if you have to beach your boat for weigh-in........if you are dealing with a 25 ft rope,you gonna have to untangle it it every time you pick it up....this way the rope stays inside the anchor rein and never tangles...besides a triple pro charger,this will save you more hassle than anything else you can put on a boat.....

  6. 6/11/2006 10:27:00 PM Submitted by Alex from GA ( from GA says Another way.
    If there's no or just a little bit of wind and a crowded ramp this works great. Take the tie downs off and back the boat into the lake, park your vehicle and get a ride to your boat that's floating in the lake. Someone will always help. If it's during the winter on an empty ramp I use Allen's method.

  7. 6/12/2006 9:51:00 AM Submitted by Roby ( from TX says ramp
    I usually back down the middle of ramp just a few feet from the water. I then put my drain plugs in, pump the bulb, load my boat with rods, tackle, lunch, ice chest, beer, dog, wife, etc... I then back in and try to start the engine, after about 5 minutes of cranking I realize that I forgot to hook the fuel line up to the motor. Once I get the engine running I try to back off the trailer but the boat won't budge. So I get out and back it in deeper, still won't budge. Then I realize that I forgot to take the straps off the back of the boat, so I pull back out and unhook the straps. Once I get the boat off the trailer I usually bounce off two or 3 real nice boats before I get tied off to the dock, after which I go and park my truck and trailer.

  8. 6/12/2006 4:49:00 PM Submitted by Bobs203 ( from IL says Unloading boat
    DGP.....I do mine exactly as you do. Haven't had wet feet in a looonnnnnnggggg time. I think this method works the best.


  9. 6/19/2006 2:10:00 AM Submitted by Blue_R70 ( from CA says Ditto on DGP's method...
    I do it the same way as well. It's pretty easy launching solo using that method...

  10. 6/19/2006 2:29:00 PM Submitted by FishAddict ( from SC says A little different
    I launch solo just about everytime out. I have a 25' rope attached to one of the front cleats (depending on which side the dock is on). for a dock on the stbd side of the boat, i run the rope through the passenger window. Straps off, plug, etc. Back down the ramp, when the boat hits the water slow down to a crawl, let it float off then pull the truck up a hair. Jump out, reach in and grab the rope that is paying out. Walk down the dock and tie off. Get back in the truck and park. It usually takes about a minute and a half.

    I do like BT's reign idea. I may look into that.

  11. 6/20/2006 12:09:00 AM Submitted by half of the population ( from CA says one more detail
    I do it kinda like Roby, But sometimes I have to put it back on the trailer then pull out of the water, but stay on the ramp were it is nice and steep to let the water drain out, then I put the plug in and start over...

  12. 6/22/2006 12:15:00 PM Submitted by DavidS ( from TX says The single most important step
    is to do EVERYTHING but launch the boat before getting onto the ramp. Load tackle, prime fuel lines, deploy docklines & bumpers, and all that BEFORE tying up the ramp. Have a good plan in mind where to leave the boat while you park the truck.

    Once you back down the ramp, do whatever you have to do safely and efficiently. Mistakes and problems happen, of course; if you've done most of the work elsewhere, they'll probably be so minor you can fix it in a few seconds. If anything comes up that needs longer attention, pull back out, fix it off-ramp, and come back for another try.

    If you're not goofing off or tying up the ramp with things you could've done in the parking lot, you won't be blocking the ramp for long; anybody who gets PO'd deserves to be unhappy. If they were truly on the ball they'd notice you'd prepped off the ramp, and if they were really ready to launch and not alone they could ask politely to slip in ahead of you... or help out by holding your boat while you park.

  13. 6/23/2006 1:58:00 AM Submitted by PowerwormWBC from WA says solo
    I use DGP's method also. Most of the time the dock is nearby though. I'll have the boat as close to the dock as I can, push it off the trailer, then grab the rope hanging off the side of the boat while standing on the dock and guide the boat off the trailer.

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