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Bill Babler

Boat Operation

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B. Babler White River Outfitters

I have really enjoyed reading your various thoughts on boat operation. As a former Water Patrol Officer and a guide of over 20 yrs. let me give you my procedure, on how I for the most part operate.

First and formost, you must remember that you are always responsible for your wake. Federal Law. If your boat wake damages or causes capsize, you are responsible. Lets talk about Short Creek to Fall Creek. Extremely narrow, and very shallow on the South Side. On flat water if there are boats anchored it is very easy to go to idle speed. This does not mean plow, it means slow. On running water keep it on top. If boats are anchored during running water in this area they shouldn't be. It's time to move. Still be curtious and move as far from them as possible. In the short grass around Fall Creek, nothing frosts my you no what, by boats anchored in the channel on the South. This is a navagation channel and should be kept open at all times. Still yet, what are you going to do? Slow down if you have to and just bite the bullet for a couple of minutes. STAY AWAY FROM FALL CREEK DOCK AT HIGH OR PLOW SPEED UNDER ANY WATER CONDITION Or Phil or I will hear about it and it is just common courtesy. If you want a reputation as a bad boater you will get it in this area. Fall Creek to Lookout. Flat water, for the most part idle speed on the 1 1/2 mile stretch unless you have a jet and use the flat side on Point Royal. In the channel on the South East you should be at idle speed. Only takes a couple of minutes to get ot lookout. Don't worry about passing people to close at idle speed in this area, every knows that you have to keep in the channel, and If they don't, they shouldn't be up there. Running water, same as below Fall Creek. Let her rip but stay away from other boater. If I can cast easily into a boat that is passing at high speed, you are way to close if I am drifting and you are flying. Gosh, all this is, common sense. Lookout to dam, flat water watch out for the jet boats, is all that I can say. Have also heard some complaints of the drift boat guides anchoring in front of people fly fishing flat water. Let's just get along and move a little bit. The drift boat guys are ok up there down to lookout on flat water but if power generations starts they only have a couple of seams they can do any good on, and for the most part they beat those fish up so bad, that after a while its like throwing rocks at them. They are pretty harmless. As for speeding jet guide boats. There are only a couple and for the sake of me I couldn't tell you what to do about it. Is it really a huge proplem? If so, just in a pleasant way say something to them. As boat guides they have a lot of river they can fish. On generation, you need to be on top to get anywhere in this area again stay as far from other boaters as possible. As a guide it's my job and responsibility to keep my people in all the fish that I can, and on our stretch of the White River, ie Taneycomo there is no better way to constantly be in fresh fish than in a power boat. This is just the way this river/lake system works. If everyone would just think how you would like to be treated instead of whats good for me, we wouldn't have a bit of a problem. Good fishing Ya'll

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