Page 23 - Mid America Boating - August 2021 issue
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that can be practiced in open water where nobody is looking. Make it a priority to build that prac-  money you might save on shoreside repairs if you could learn to do a few of the lower-
      tice time into your schedule. Once you feel more comfortable envisioning the docking procedure  level tasks yourself.
      in your mind, bring the boat to the actual dock and spend some time practicing there too.  Engine maintenance courses cover everything from the basics of engine parts to diag-
        Eliminating your own nerves from the equation can go a long way toward removing anxiety from  nosing problems with them. While modern engines with computerized systems will  23
      the docking experience. You can become the skipper who receives applause from the crowd after  often require a mechanic, there still are plenty of things that boat owners can learn to
      tying up and heading ashore for a frosty beverage.                             fix themselves.
                                                                                      And, most of these courses help boat owners understand when it really is time to call
      3. Learn More About Your Electronics                                           in some professional help, a lesson that can save a lot of boating time and aggravation
        Are you thoroughly familiar with every button and feature on every piece of your marine electronics?  in the future.
        If you answered yes, then you’re a rare and precious gem of a human being. Entire towers of tech-
      nology should be built and named in your honor. Most of us don’t even know how to work all the  6. Teach Your Significant Other How to Skipper
      buttons on the TV remote control at home. Which is why there’s no shame in being ignorant about  For decades, spouses have complained that they don’t like boating as much as their  [     MID-AMERICA BOATING
      helm electronics features that you never use on the boat, or that you don’t even know are there.  partners do. The scenario is most often a husband who always takes the helm, and a wife
        The existence of all those helm electronics features presents an opportunity to learn, and to  who goes along for whatever ride he wants, often feeling silently terrified that if something
      improve your overall boating experience. Many manufacturers these days offer video tutorials  went wrong, she wouldn’t know what to do to help or get the boat back home safely.
      online to show off the various functions and features that come with chartplotters, fish finders and  The Cruising Club of America came up with a course called “Suddenly Alone” that alle-
      more. Committing to learn a little more doesn’t necessarily mean flipping through a gargantuan  viated a lot of those spouses’ fears. Today, that course has evolved into a program called
      manual, as in the days of old.                                                 Safety for Cruising Couples.It’s designed to ensure that everyone on the boat knows what
        And being familiar with all of the features at your disposal just may inspire you cruise in ways  to do in case of an emergency, from taking command of the boat to calling for help on the
      you didn’t even think were possible.                                           VHF radio.
                                                                                      Having this knowledge helps everyone to feel more comfortable on board—and makes
      4. Take a Boating Class                                                        it far more likely that everyone will want to keep heading out on the boat together (also  ]     AUGUST 2021
        One ray of light that shone through the darkness of the COVID-19 pandemic was the speed with  consider planning a romantic date night onboard to celebrate).
      which everyone from boat dealers to boat show organizers enhanced their online offerings. The
      folks who create boater-education courses are no different; they had some online offerings prior  7. Plan the Ultimate Boating Vacation of a Lifetime
      to the pandemic, but now, there’s a bounty of knowledge awaiting boaters of all skill levels at the  No boating bucket list would be complete without a suggestion to plan the cruise of
      click of a mouse.                                                              a lifetime. Whether it’s heading from New England to Florida, or from Florida to the
        If you already know the basics of boating, that’s great. Organizations including the United States  Bahamas and beyond, or from the Pacific Northwest to Alaska, or around America’s
      Power Squadrons and BoatUS offer all kinds of upper-level options for folks with bucket list  Great Loop of rivers, gulfs and oceans, a cruise of a lifetime usually takes months to
      dreams of learning a whole lot more.                                           years of planning.
        There are seminars about cruise planning, weather, marine electrical systems, anchoring, tying  Non-profit organizations like the Salty Dawg Sailing Association organize rallies to des-
      knots and all kinds of other boating specifics. What better time than the present to take a deep  tinations including the Caribbean that let boaters cruise on their own boats, but with a
      dive into a part of the boating world that you’ve always wished you knew more about?  group, to get a feel for the types of longer itineraries that might be part of a bucket list
                                                                                     cruise. America’s Great Loop Cruisers’ Association is the place to make online friends if
      5. Improve Your Maintenance Skills                                             you’re thinking about a Great Loop itinerary.
        When thinking about the courses you might take this year, consider putting boat, engine, and  Want to cruise somewhere else? Do a little searching online, and you’ll absolutely find
      trailer maintenance the list.                                                  a group of like-minded boaters who are planning bucket list itineraries similar to the ones
        Let's take your boat's engine for example. Sure, you probably know the basics of how your boat’s  of your dreams. MAB
      engine works, but wouldn’t it be nice to feel confident that if you had a breakdown away from the
      dock, you’d be able to fix it instead of calling for a tow back to the marina? And think of all the

                 Boating Association of Ohio Has Your Stern.

                 Legislative                   Public Safety                       Environmental

                 The BAO is the advocate of recreational boaters and the boating industry in Ohio.

                 Our mission is to promote and protect boating in the buckeye state for the half-million Ohio boat owners, the
                 thousands of Ohioans who earn a living through the boating industry, and the numerous visitors drawn to Ohio for
                 water recreation.

                 From Lake Erie in the north to the mighty Ohio River in the south, the BAO is making waves to promote and protect
                 boating in the state!

                     Join us!
                     Support the BAO and our initiatives.
                     Go to and become a member today!

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