Docking your boat might seem easy when you have lots of room and there’s no one around. But try it in a crowded area or when you’re maneuvering in a complicated dock setup and things get stressful. Here are a few tips on how to dock your boat like a pro.

  1. Practice. As with everything, the more you practice, the better you get. Find an empty or uncrowded dock where you can work on your skills.
  2. Consider the conditions. Factors like wind and current can move your boat in unpredictable ways. Keep the conditions in mind as you approach the dock.
  3. Go slow. Take it slow so you don’t cause damage if you do hit the dock. Use only short bursts of power to prevent creating too much momentum.
  4. Turn before powering. Turning your wheel before you apply power will prevent your boat from moving unpredictably and will keep you aimed at your target.
  5. Place fenders strategically. Think about where your boat is most likely to contact the dock and pilings. Placing your fenders where they will be most effective will make docking easier.