How to Pull A Boat Into A Slip

Watch this short, 2-minute video to learn how to pull a boat into a slip.

Getting the boat out on the water is the easy part. Now that it’s time to come back into the dock, a lot of folks get nervous if they don’t have a lot of experience docking a boat into a slip. The fine folks at Carefree Boat Club put this video together to help their members become pros at docking their boats, and we wanted to share it here as well. Enjoy!


Today, we’re walking through the process of bringing one of the Carefree Boat Club boats back to its home slip.  One of the things we do with Carefree is go through an orientation class, and a close quarters maneuvering class.  So we spend as much time with you as you need to, so you know how to put the boat safely back into the slip.

We want you to be at a point where you are comfortable, not nervous, the adrenalin is low, and you just come in nice and easy.

So what we teach you is, when you’re moving in close quarters, keep the boat out of gear.  Keep it in neutral.  If you want to move the boat, go to forward. When I say forward I mean put it in gear, not giving it any gas, just at idle speed, and give it about a 3 or 4 count.  Then back to neutral.  We are coming up on a dock, we need to move over to the left, I’m going to set the steering wheel all the way to the left, and it’s still in neutral.  And now I am going to go into gear…One thousand one, one  thousand two…back to neutral.

Slow Is Pro

Then I’ll use the engine like a rudder, and still moving very slowly. My motto is “Slow Is Pro”.  So move it slowly into the slip, and you’ll find even if you just get the front end of the boat into the slip, and you are moving slowly, you can step out of the boat and walk the boat the rest of the way in.  There is nothing to be nervous about, we’ve got the lines for the slip already set for the boat.  You don’t have to worry about that.  We’ve got the fenders already set out.  Just put the boat back in its place.  Trim the motor up, make sure you haven’t done any damage.  You don’t have to worry about cleaning it…and you’re off.  5 minutes and you’re on your way to your car and dinner.

If you want to find out more about the Carefree Boat Club, simply click here to request more information.