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Public course etiquette, boat lane blocked???


gt2003
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We were able to find the slalom course this weekend on the public lake that we use. It's actually in great shape, has a mini course and the regular course but I've got a question regarding course etiquette. When we found it, there was a red buoy right in the middle of where you would enter the boat lane on each end of the course. I'm assuming this is to keep the majority of folks out of the course who aren't skiing it. What's the etiquette here? Should I wait until people are actually skiing the course and ask them or is this common practice to block the boat lane when the course isn't in use? If common practice, what's the protocol for removing the buoys and skiing? The marina owner said one of the boat slip renters puts the course in every year for folks to use so I'd like to treat it with respect. What would be the best way to proceed?
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  • Baller

Contact the Guy who put it in, get approval, offer to help police/maintain it and consider dropping him a few dollars, how could he ever refuse.

Or though it is a Public lake, just courtesy to talk to him, after all, he has gone to the trouble of installing it.

That would be my approach.

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  • Baller
I kept a course on a public lake years ago. I didn't mind people using it as long as they fixed things they damaged. If its a floating course be careful if you have an I/O boat. The deeper draft could hit the PVC pipes.
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I'm pretty sure it is a floating course and I do have an I/O. I'll wait until we find folks who are using it then figure out the best way to approach it. I can only figure that the "blocking buoys" are there for a reason.
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First it is refreshing to hear someone be interested in doing well by the owner of a course on a public lake. That is rare. Speaks well of your character.

 

IO is not the best choice. If you have a skier that can easily pull the boat around or sloppy steering or both you could really do damage to a float course. It's a lot harder to keep the boat as straight as you think you can with an IO though the course. Also if it is a float course and one of the entrance gate buoys are missing, the ramaining buoy will get pulled to the center. That means the course is already damaged in a way that you could or anyone for that matter with any kind of boat, cause more damage. If it is a single buoy between the two blocking access then what has been said above to contact owner. Do your homework and look up photos of what a float course looks like under water.

 

sxdnak30luhx.jpg

 

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As in Wish's picture above, you catch one piece of a floating course and you can mangle the entire thing - not to mention what you will do to your boat if you manage to get ahold of a stainless main line.

 

The most likely time to get into trouble in the course with an I/O would be after your skier falls in the course and you are either trying to pick them up or pull them back up.

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Thanks gentlemen. The last thing I want to do is damage the course after someone has been nice enough to set it up for public use. The nearest course to me besides this one is 1 1/2 hours away so I'd like to protect this one and use it appropriately. I'll just wait until I see folks skiing it then ask questions accordingly. I only saw one red buoy directly in front of the entrance gates no matter what direction the boat was going. Sounds safer just to wait and find out. Thanks again
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I often ski in a portable course that has two, single buoys at each end. The buoys mark the anchors at each end so we can pull them up when we take them out. Could be the same set up as that course.

 

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@jcamp , it very well could be the same set up. So, how do you get the boat into the boat lane without having to swerve to avoid hitting the anchor markers? They were pretty darn close to the first set of the boat lane buoys and right in the middle.
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