Docking SHOULD be EASY


Yes, docking your boat should be EASY; but, so many boaters are challenged every time they approach or leave their dock or slip.

There are so many variables to deal with from the type of boat, drive system, dock configuration, wind direction and speed, weather conditions, current, knowledge of those on board (including the captain), dock helpers, those shouting out instructions, interference from electronics and more.

As a result, frustrated boaters everywhere are terrified of the last 50’ to the dock. They lack confidence and fear embarrassment.

The good news is, you can choose easy docking!

How many of the following thoughts have gone through your mind

cluttered mind captain
  • Should I send my First Mate out on the bow?
  • Should she/he take a boat hook to hold off if I get too close?
  • How close do I have to be for my First Mate to jump with the rope?
  • With this wind, should I bring in the bow first?
  • The bow is going to hit the dock, should I rev up the motor in reverse?
  • When should we lower the fenders? How high?
  • She can’t hear me. I’ll shout louder.
  • I am too far from the dock for my First Mate to jump. Now what?
  • Which way should I turn the wheel?
  • Should I only use the shifts and not the wheel?
  • Should I turn off the motors and let the wind bring me in?
  • The wind is behind me. How will that affect my bow first approach?
  • Which curtains should I take off, so the wind doesn’t interfere with my docking?
  • Maybe I should wear my Captain’s hat and shout orders.
  • Should I listen to the instructions other boaters are yelling at me?
  • I don’t want to come in faster, than I want to hit the dock.
  • I’ll go slow and keep trying until I get it right.
  • I don’t want to embarrass myself.
  • Look at all the people watching me. Now what?

With your mind so cluttered with thoughts like those above, you will most likely have a stressful, bad docking.

However, there is a way to take the stress out of docking and replace all your fears and questions with confident actions.

How? Get proven instruction for your boat and drive system from an instructor, who can actually dock any boat in any situation. Learn the proven techniques and practice them to make your boat do exactly what you want it to do.

It is no different than anything else. For example, to have your computer as a friend, you need to learn the programs and steps to make your computer do exactly what you want it to do; otherwise, your printer may not always print, or you “lose” your emails, or you can’t open or find an attachment or where a document was saved on your hard drive. Even worse, you may be infected because your anti-virus expired.

The choice is yours

  • You can choose to learn and practice the computer rules and actions and make it do what you want it to do, OR continue doing what you are doing. Just, don’t expect different results.
  • You can choose to learn and practice the proven techniques to handle your boat to make it do what you want it to do, OR you can continue doing what you are doing. Just, don’t expect different results.

Practice only makes perfect when you practice the correct procedures!

happy face
The obvious choice

Choose to simplify docking to eliminate your stress, fear, embarrassment, doubt and confusion.

  • Get the correct instruction
  • Learn the correct instruction
  • Practice the correct instruction

Become a Confident Captain. Knowing what to do and how to do it, will make all the difference! There will be no need for yelling, swearing, jumping, boat hooks, bionics, dock helpers, guesswork or embarrassment.

captain confidence docking

Results Count!

Easy & Inexpensive

Start with the Introductory lesson and Video. Later, once you have mastered the techniques, if you need to back into your slip, consider the Advanced e-lesson.

Docking is EASY….but only when you know how.

See also: Don’t do What Doesn’t Work

2 thoughts on “Docking SHOULD be EASY”

  1. Doug/Brenda,
    In February Brenda sent me “Docking Your Single Outboard” with its very informative section on “docking in a boat lift” page 112+; precisely my situation, almost: 16’ miniskiff flats boat w/20 hp tiller outboard. The obstacle: the lift is perpendicular to the fast running current on a tidal creek (6’ tide fall and rise, every 5-6 hours). Not a problem with my usual fishing partner aboard and putting the long FLIPP line around the down-tide dock post, but – The Problem: he’s currently injured, not from docking (much more dangerous…yard work), and not likely to return anytime soon. So the question is, in a one-person operation, getting the line around the dock post to execute the docking maneuver while doing three things at once with the tiller (direction, gear, acc/deceleration). Any suggestions? Thanks.
    Wayne Hogan

    1. Wayne, I have sent you an email requesting more information so that I can respond more accurately. We’ll post the reply once we have all the information. Thanks for the question. Doug

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