According to, Connecticut is home to over 3,000 lakes, ponds, and reservoirs. Thousands of residents own boats and if you've ever been on a waterway here in Connecticut, you've probably encountered a jerk here and there. You know, the guy who dropped a Mercury V12 Verado on the back of his Bayliner, and flies across the lake, creating a huge wake that almost tips you over.

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At 8.4 square miles, Candlewood Lake is the largest man-made reservoir in the state. At any point during a nice summer day, Candlewood can be packed with boaters. The Candlewood Lake Authority has seen everything over the years, and they just posted a list of the Top 10 rules to respectful boating, in an effort to stop boaters from acting like they were driving along I-84 at 5 PM on a Friday.

1. Respect the Ramp

It's awful to sit behind someone who is unprepared that is trying to launch their boat at the launch ramp. Everyone just wants to get their boat in the water, park the vehicle, and go. If you make someone wait 15 minutes while you putz around with the fuel tank, be prepared to face angry boaters. Be prepared before you get there.

2. Own your wake

You're probably not the only person enjoying the pond or lake, there are others enjoying the fishing, swimming, or sitting on their dock enjoying the view. Be aware that the wake that you create could possibly capsize a smaller vessel also.

3. Keep the tunes in check

Just like on land, if your neighbor is cranking the tunes up, it can disturb your peace. Sound is amplified over water, and not everyone enjoys your taste in music.

4. Carry in, carry out

Litterbugs exist, even on the water. Don't be a slob and throw your trash into the lake, gather it up during your trip and dispose of it properly after you get back to land.

5. Slow your roll

Observe the speed limits and no wake zones. There's no difference between crashing into something on land or water. Operator inattention is one of the the leading causes of accidents according to the US Coast Guard, the faster you go, the more there is that your don't have time to react to.

6. Rules of the road

Waterway markers are there for your protection, pay attention to them. Also, familiarize yourself with the right of way.

7. Keep your distance

Stay at least 100 feet away from other boats while you cross their wake, and never try to jump another boat's wake.

8. Be prepared

Know the safety rules and boating laws, and make sure you have a well-fit life jacket on board for every passenger.

9. Anchoring and mooring

Always enter a mooring area at slow speed, your wake could disrupt other boaters

10. Be polite, and Wave

Motorcyclists do it, truckers have their own series of blinks to acknowledge each other, and on the water, it's a wave of the hand. "Hey, what's up" and a simple wave go a long way.

Thanks to the Candlewood Lake Authority for trying to make our waterways a bit more civil.

Climb Aboard Ethan's Pontoon Tour of Candlewood Lake Waterfront

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