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Pontoons are different than other types of boats and require different handling techniques.

docking your pontoon boat elesson



This e-Lesson covers:

  • the differences
  • the challenges they create
  • how to overcome those challenges

to dock Safely and Easily.



pontoon docking video 

This Video covers:

  • on the water exercises
  • docking with forward gate
  • docking with side gate
  • docking with aft gate

Safely and Easily.



Docking Your Pontoon e-Lesson
(pdf download)
order pontoon docking now
Docking Your Pontoon Video order pontoon docking now

docking outboard and sterndrive pontoon boat

Pontoon Boats are different from other types of boats on the water and have much to offer boating families.
  • Decks are flush and close to the height of most lower docks or floating docks.
  • Twin or triple pontoons provide a very stable platform for families of all ages.
  • The deck or floor is flat from bow to stern with no steps or ladders.
  • Square corners forward and aft accommodate easier stepping on and off.
  • Some have a safe forward deck and some don't.
  • Some have a safe aft deck and some don't.
  • Some have a side gate or two.
 All these and other features, make docking Pontoons different. Some features make them more difficult and some make them easier to dock than conventional bowriders or cuddies.
Pontoon Boats require different instructions and different handling techniques than conventional boats.

They act Like They are on Rails

pontoon boat docked

  • When moving forward, they act like they are on rails making them "tight-turn challenged" unlike other outboard powered boats. They just won’t make tight turns.
  • When stopped, Pontoons boats blow sideways like “dress shoes on ice” unlike all other boats.
They are also greatly affected by wind and current when you slow down or stop; allowing the Boat to drift/slide/skid in the direction of the wind/current—Mother Nature takes control.
Most dockings include wind and/or current. Take control away from Mother Nature. Put you and your First Mate in control.
When docking, you can relinquish control to Mother Nature OR put you and your First Mate in control. It's your choice.

Stress-free Docking

You will look and feel like a pro when docking your Pontoon with Doug's simplified, proven docking techniques instead of fumbling through, hoping you don't hurt the boat or your crew.Learn how to:

  • Approach from the left and from the right
  • Overcome wind from all directions
  • Dock in your slip, at a gas dock and in a boat lift
  • Land on both your port side and your starboard side
  • Undock against the wind and much more

Learn stress-free docking for you and your First Mate. No need for yelling, swearing, jumping, boat hooks, bionics, dock helpers or guesswork!

The Lesson Really Works!

Hi Doug - Having had a bow rider about 18 years ago, I believed that docking a 22 ft. pontoon would be effortless. I made sure that I read up on docking procedures, as I had done in the past. After all that reviewing, I was very successful at running my pontoon into the dock and actually have the corner of the bow ride up onto the dock. None of the manuals that I read, (even the one that published by the manufacturer), or the research that I did on the internet, or the information given in the  standard piloting books took into account that the bow had a corner and that movement of the pontoon was more greatly affected by wind and current. My early adventures in docking my pontoon also included some spirited communication with my first mate, which I severely neglected to take into account was my wife.

I am pleased to let you know that following your techniques in The Better Way, Docking Your Pontoon, I have very quickly become a pro. You made me a master of all docking situations by covering each scenario in the book. I got the “key.” The icing on the cake for me was when you actually called me to follow-up on an e-mail I sent you about a particular difficulty that I was having. You even taught me how to communicate with my wife, I mean my first mate, during docking. Now, docking is easy, pleasant, and without any stress. It is actually a lot of fun. To hear my wife say to me, “that was perfect”, after docking on a windy day, was priceless.

The Better Way, Docking Your Pontoon should be the required text for anyone wishing to enjoy pontoon boating and have a wonderful boating experience with their first mate. Thanks!

Bob Schumacher, GA

Excellent Source of Information

Hi Brenda Thank you so much for helping me out, the lessons were fantastic!  I had a single outboard for years and for whatever reason always struggled with docking smoothly.  This year we bought a new pontoon and soon realized it handles differently than the old boat.  I found your site online and it has been the most excellent source for easy trouble free docking I have ever come across.  The friends at the Marina are shocked at the new expertise I display and I made sure they knew the source of my new found ability!!  I will be ordering more lessons in the near future on twin engine docking as well! Thank you very much for sharing this great info!


160 Pages with 176 diagrams and 91 pictures

The e-Lesson is filled with proven, step-by-step instructions from an authority on docking who has taught thousands—on all sizes and types of boats from Runabouts to motor yachts. 160 Pages with 176 diagrams and 91 pictures. Learn how to overcome all the challenges for only $29. All docking situations are covered—landing on both sides, approaching from both directions and winds from all directions (light, heavy and strong).

"I just wanted to let you know how helpful your docking e-lesson has been to me in docking my 22 footer. Since digestingyour lesson and doing the open water practice you recommended, my docking has improved 1000%! "

—John, Atlanta, GA


 Docking Your Pontoon e-Lesson
(pdf download)
 order pontoon docking now
 Docking Your Pontoon Video  order pontoon docking now


  • With the right instructions, practice will make you good at doing it right!
  • With the wrong instructions, practice will make you good at doing it wrong!
  • With so many bad instructions out there, no wonder there are so many boaters who do such a lousy job of docking!
  • This e-Lesson will teach you how to dock with positive, predictable results.
  • Choose the lessons that produce the results you want--before practicing!

Simple Step-by-Step Instructions on
how to Dock Bow First--
Both in your slip and at a gas dock.

  • winkie at the helm pontoon boat dockingLearn how your Pontoon handles, when docking--illustrated with easy to follow diagrams.
  • Doug starts with open water exercises in the Pontoon docking e-Lesson, so you learn how your drive system and Pontoon Boat work together and don't work together.
  • When finished your open water exercises, you will know what to expect as you use the wheel, throttle and shift. You will also know what it won't do.
  • Then, it's easy to approach a dock and dock bow first--no fear, no guessing, no hoping for the best, no jumping, no injuries, no boat hook. No shouting and no swearing--just good team work.
  • Doug's FLIPP Line™ Procedure, will make docking and securing your Pontoon a simple easy procedure for you and your First Mate or singlehandedly.
  • Dock easily and safely with a complete understanding of what to do and how to do it--especially in front of an audience.

Once you know how your Pontoon was meant to be handled, docking is EASY. It's just a matter of practicing Doug's proven techniques specific to  Pontoon Boats.

"I feel as though I know you already. I wish we weren't so far away. I don't know how to thank you for all your info so far. I think that you'll be hearing from me again. With your help I hope to be the best first mate my captain could ask for. We love the ocean and if you can teach old dogs new tricks then we can still have a wonderful retirement on the water. Thanks for being there in our time of need."

—Joan Thurston, BC

 Let Doug Show You the EASY Way ..

doug driving pontoon boat

Doug Dawson, a 5th generation boat industry expert, knows the design characteristics of all boats and drive systems. Doug has driven, demonstrated, tested, reviewed and handled every type of boat and drive system and knows how to teach others with easy-to-follow instructions.

With Doug's  e-Lessons, you will learn your boat's unique dance moves and be able to waltz smoothly as one, and dock your boat with ease.


 Docking Your Pontoon e-Lesson
(pdf download)
order pontoon docking now
Docking Your Pontoon Video order pontoon docking now

Dock your Pontoon boat powered by an Evinrude, Honda, Merc, Suzuki, or Tohatsu outboard motor with confidence. There are many manufacturers of Pontoon Boats including:

  • Aquapatio
  • Avalon
  • Bennington
  • Bentley
  • Berkshire
  • Crest
  • Cypress Key
  • Flote Bote
  • G3 SunCatcher
  • Godfrey
  • Harris
  • JC Pontoon
  • Legend
  • Lowe
  • Manitou
  • Montego Bay
  • Premier
  • Princecraft
  • San Pan
  • South Bay
  • Sunchaser
  • Sucruiser
  • Sun Tracker
  • Sweetwater
  • Sylvan
  • Tahoe
  • Weeres

No-Risk Money Back Guarantee!

guaranteedThere is absolutely no way that you can lose-except by not taking me up on this offer. If you don't agree that this is the most impactful, eye-opening and practical information you've ever received on the subject of docking your boat, simply email me and I'll issue you a 100% refund of the purchase price no questions asked. You've got 30 full days to use and profit from this unique information or else ask (and receive) an immediate refund.

Your Invisible Boat Docking Instructor

No need to pay $100 plus per hour. Just download and print out the e-Lesson "Docking Your Pontoon" and take Doug (your invisible instructor) aboard with you. Practice as often as you wish.

Dawsons' e-Lessons aren't novels, emotional experiences or worrysome journeys of discovery, they are simple, easy-to-follow, step-by-step "how-to" instructions with illustrations.


Get Direct Access To One Of The
World's Leading Experts On Docking!

After your order, you will receive an email with a download link for your e-Lesson and/or your Video. It is located in "summary of order" in your order confirmation.

Order securely on-line:

Docking Your Pontoon e-Lesson
(pdf download)
order pontoon docking now
Docking Your Pontoon Video order pontoon docking now

Order securely on-line: PayPal is an authorized retailer for Dawsons.
Paypal accepts credit cards as well as PayPal payments.

To order by phone, call us at (519) 538-2887 (9 to 5 EST, Mon-Fri)

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Remember, you have a 100% Money Back Guarantee.

Happy Boating!

doug boat docking expert


Doug Dawson

P.S. You can spend your summer being frustrated and nervous docking your boat with everyone watching, and even worse, damaging your boat....or get this Docking e-Lesson  and be able to put on a show like a pro and be the talk of the dock!

P.P.S. You can't lose when you accept this no-risk offer. If you're disappointed with your boat docking e-Lesson for any reason, just let us know and we'll refund your purchase payment in FULL.

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