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8 Top Smith Mountain Lake Boating Etiquette Tips

Being the captain of your crew’s boating adventures means more than knowing how to operate the vessel. It's also about understanding the rhythm of the lake, respecting the shared space and being mindful of those around you. Follow these tips for a safe and delightful experience on Smith Mountain Lake.

  • Observe lake markers and no-wake zone markers.
  • Display lights sunset to sunrise.
  • Drive to the right of center. Oncoming boats should be port (left side) to port.
  • Make eye contact or wave to other skippers to acknowledge awareness of each other’s presence and direction of travel.
  • Maintain a safe speed and travel at reduced speeds in heavy traffic, at night and other times of low visibility.
  • Avoid creating wakes within 200 feet of swimmers, paddlers, shorelines and docks.
  • When tubing, skiing, wakeboarding and wake surfing, minimize repeat passes along the same shorelines and eliminate power turns.
  • Keep music to a reasonable level so as not to disturb others enjoying the lake.
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