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What are the rules when approaching boats that are STOPPED/ANCHORED in a main channel? When I run to the inlet I go through an area that is flooded with boats that drift right in the middle of a channel where some spots are only 50 yards wide. NO, I did not complete the boating safety course but I am this weekend . I just wanted to know how to deal with 100 boats in a 2 acre area. I always slow down and weave through the traffic, but I would feel uncomfotable stopping in the middle of a busy channel when 15' to 50' boats are trying to get to the inlet. Whats the protocol. Thanks
 

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you are always responsible for your wake .....but anyone anchored or stopped in the channel fishing is definitely in the wrong according to the rules of the road....

with that said...if you zip through there and cause any injury or death...you'll be hung...

but if you cause a bit of discomfort...well that's to be expected if fishing in or near the channel....
 

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there are rules for traffic in a channel, but as you know every fisherman wants to catch fish is going to try to catch fish in the deep parts of the water availbable to them. Even if they are wrong to be anchored in the channel and or drifting to catch fish you can't run them down. Be polite and do your best to get by them and be on your way. Maybe they will return the politeness down the channel some.
 

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Go slow no wake. only takes a minute or two. Take the high road.
 

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Just remember the main intracoastchannel is like a highway....if you decide to play in it...expect he worst...high road or not....some people get paid to get from one end to the other....as fast as possible....while I try to be courteous...I get a bit frustrated when it becomes an outrageous burden in certain places at certain times.....
 

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If you slowed down for every boat in the inlet or channels that are not marked no wake it would take forever to get around, not to mention the waste in gas from slowing and speeding up. I know when I fish these areas I expect to get worked and dont expect people to slow down, I think most people feel the same way.
 

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What gets me is when they block the inlet or the bridge. The best thing to do is give a security call on 16 or 13. If boaters/anglers did some hunting back in the sounds they would find some very good holes that have to hold fish.
 

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Rules of the road are like the Pirates code. They are meant to be guidelines, not rules. In your case the, "Up on plane" guideline clearly applies. If you enter the channel on plane you DO NOT have to slow down. It's your right to aim directly at the offenders to scare them, then swerve out of the way at the last second, pretending not to see them. "Up on plane rule 1a" If there isn't much traffic and you see a sailboat under sail in the channel, it's OK to purposely run him down.
 

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One shakey issue with rules of the road...there is no clear definition of narrow channel which would require different actions than if the channel is not considered a "narrow channel"...

Either way, the safe speed rule applies and most should slow down if the boat density is thick.... and as always... your wake s not allowed to do damage or injury...but I don't think discomfort is out of the question if you are clearly impedeing the passage of vessels properly using the channel.
 

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Personally, when I am on the water is the one period of time that I am not in any particular hurry. I will generally slow down, especially when passing a group of boats. If you come blowing through a fleet of boats at 30+mph, you can't see if there is some little kid maybe leaning over the side of a boat or some putz in a rental that just decided to move for another drift and pops right out behind another boat. If you are cruising through, which way are you gonna swerve with boats everywhere. Usually the only time I will go by on plane is if I have a clear path around all of the boats and then I'll take it wide and go up on plane.
 
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