How To Launch your boat, back up your trailer, where to keep your hand when backing up and what guide to use.
Before you back up your trailer, make sure all tie-downs and boat hooks are removed. At this time, do not unhook the bow hook.
One problem most people have when launching their boats is backing up the trailer. The easiest way is to put your hand on the bottom of your steering wheel of the vehicle. Look to your side view mirrors as you back up. With your hand on the bottom of the steering wheel your adjustments are minor and the turn of the wheel less.
Backing up your trailer without the boat can be tough, as you cannot always see the trailer. Try attaching a bicycle flag holder to one fender of the trailer and insert the flag. Now you can see the flag and back up using the flag as a side guide.
For an easy boat launching or boat retrieval, back the trailer into the water until the front of the trailer fenders are at water level. In most cases you will be able to push the boat off the trailer or winch it on the trailer from that position. If the launching pad is too steep or too flat to launch or retrieve, you must adjust accordingly. When going fishing with a buddy, have him hold a bow line as you push the boat off the trailer. Once the boat is free of the trailer have your buddy bring the boat dockside. Many people use boat bumpers between the dock and the boat to prevent scraping against the dock.
If you launch the boat alone, leave your boat line attached to the bow hook. Push the boat off the trailer, bring the bow of the boat to you, attach a line to the bow, unhook the bow line and pull the boat to the dock and tie off while you park your vehicle. Slowly drive from the launch area to park your rig and have a fine day on the water.
Usually if the boat ramp is fairly level you will have to back your trailer farther back in the water submerging the tail pipe of your tow vehicle. NEVER, NEVER under any circumstances, if you must back that far in the water, turn off your vehicle. Keep the engine running.