The basics of tying a boat

Tying a boat, docking a boat, and using boat lifts all can be somewhat of a journey the first time you do it. Before you start tying down your boat, you need to know the basics.

Locating the Cleats or Pilings

Cleats are simple to use and they’re generally a fixed, T-shaped piece of hardware located on a larger platform. To tie off to a cleat, you slip your line through the cleat and then around it.

Pilings are long, erect pieces of either metal or wood, which you need to wrap your line around. The first step to tying off your boat is to find the cleat or piling you’ll be attaching to.

Tying Off Between Cleats or Pilings

If you’re in a slip or berth, you’ll be tying off between sets of cleats or pilings. You need to position your boat in the center of both, so the boat doesn’t become damaged.

Once you’re properly positioned, tie your boat off between the cleats and pilings in a way that will keep your boat from running into either side of the slip or berth.

Tying Off Along a Dock or Pier

If you’re tying up your boat on one side of a dock or a pier, you just need to tie your boat off far enough away from the dock or pier that it doesn’t become damaged, while also making sure that it isn’t far away enough to drift.

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