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Skipper’s Corner

It’s been a dream of yours, to own your own boat. You found one at the boat show or a great used one for sale in a yard and you finally take hold of that dream. It took quite a while. You took your boating course and now you’re ready to go. Not slow mind you. No, you got ‘a go FAST!! SUPER FAST!! Your hand pushes down hard on the throttle, you rise up on plane! You are almost airborne. You are free at last! You don’t have the time to notice it’s a 5 MPH zone. Besides, who can read a sign when you’re doing 110 MPH with eight 450’s hanging on your transom? There’s neither the marine police nor bay constables in sight. Besides, they don’t have the power on their meager patrol boats to catch you!
Hold on for one “Minuto captain RPMs”. Let me ask you a question. “Why did you buy that boat? For the thrill of speed? To impress your slow friends?” Perhaps it’s time to re-evaluate.

How to get the most enjoyment out of your time on the water. Everyone owning a boat likes to pep it up at times. It’s natural. But when speed becomes the constant, then it’s time to slow down and smell the salt grass because you’re missing a lot, my seafaring friend. That I can guarantee!
When you back off on the throttle, you get to see the wonders of nature all around you. You have an uninterrupted 360-degree view of the sky which you cannot get anywhere else. The clouds form different shapes and colors from dawn to dusk. You can see a storm so far in the distance that you know it will never darken your sunny day. And the wonders you will see if you are comfortable being out on the water when the moon rises and stars fill the sky.
All species of bird life are within the scope of your boat. Seagulls fly above, cormorants dive below the surface, skimmers hunt for their lunch and an osprey dives down for a bunker. If you have children, slow down and teach them about the nature they are part of by being privileged to have access to a boat. Many will never get to see the miracles of our bays and oceans. You will be fostering lifelong memories and an appreciation of nature that’s all laid out before you and harder to take in when you are always running “at the races”.
Slowing down allows for your passengers’ relaxation rather than cringing and holding on for dear life. It’s an opportunity to take in the islands and salt marshes with their brilliant green summer grasses, admire the traditional bay houses that remain, and watch the brilliant glint of the sun upon the water. More importantly, your guests’ beers won’t fly out of their hands and into the drink and they don’t have to worry where their six-year-old is because he flew out of the boat when you hit that giant wake doing 50 MPH. Yeah! You thought it would be exciting and funny but they were just terrified!
Then there are the practical issues. How wasteful is “full tilt” on fuel which is so costly today? Oh, yeah, I forgot. You can afford it. Well lucky you! Congrats! But in a world that is trying to limit carbon footprints so that we all survive, maybe you could give that a bit of thought. Not much. Just a little. You also should consider how long you want that/those/them engines to last. The more abused the shorter the lifespan.
One other thing. If you want to “run it up”, we all do at the appropriate time, be sure you are not in a closed-in channel where the force of your wake can erode pieces of the wetlands.
We have little enough of it left as it is. Take this into consideration. It has been scientifically proven that no matter how fast you go, you can’t lose the green flies. No one knows how they do it but they just keep up. The trick is to take time to really enjoy your boat, your friends, your family, and your surroundings. Life speeds on fast enough without running your vessel full tilt all the time.
See you on the water,
Captain Eddy