Category: Blog Posts

  • How to Buy a Used Boat from a Private Seller

    How to Buy a Used Boat from a Private Seller

    How to Buy a Used Boat from a Private Seller: Avoid Being Scammed

    Are you thinking of owning a boat and wondering how to buy a used boat from a private seller; where do you even start?

    Several options exist in the Midwest and across the US for purchasing pre-owned boats. Valley Marine provides a selection of used boats tailored to your budget, ensuring we assist you in finding the perfect match.

    At times, seeking out a private seller may seem like a more personalized and engaging buying experience, offering a broader range of boat choices, potentially at a lower cost.

    We understand your concerns! If this situation resonates with you, our goal is to ensure you enjoy a top-notch experience and steer clear of any potential scams. Dive into our comprehensive manual for purchasing a pre-owned boat from a private seller.

    Finding a Boat

    The initial step in purchasing a pre-owned boat from an individual seller involves locating available boats for sale. Where would be the optimal source for discovering them?

    Knowing where to look is a crucial first step.

    How to Buy a Used Boat from a Private Seller_ Our go-to Strategy

    Local Area

    If you are looking to buy a boat, it’s probably because you live near a lake or sea, so your local area is full of potential! Keep an eye out for:

    • Boats displayed for sale in front yards or docks.
    • Local marinas or boat storage facilities that may have postings or boats on consignment.
    • Community bulletin boards at local supply shops or waterfront restaurants.

    Online: Boat Specialized Paged

    The digital marketplace is an invaluable resource when searching for a used boat, providing access to an extensive selection of listings, detailed information, and valuable tools to aid in your decision-making process. 

    • Boat Trader stands out as one of the preeminent online boat marketplaces in the United States, offering over 100,000 active listings for a variety of vessels, from small dinghies to large yachts.
    • On boats.com, you can also find new and used boats as well as helpful information about boat-related topics. 
    • YachtWorld is another prominent US platform that specializes in the online buying and selling of boats. 

    Tailored to the luxury and larger vessel market segment, this platform is ideal for those seeking a more upscale experience.

    How to Buy a Used Boat from a Private Seller_ Our go-to Strategy (2)

    Sale Pages

    General sale pages and online marketplaces can be treasure troves for used boats. 

    While they require careful inspection for legitimacy, they often host a wide range of options.

    • Local classifieds such as Craigslist offer listings that might not appear elsewhere.
    • Facebook Marketplace is a social platform where private sellers may post their boats for a quick sale.
    • Auction sites like eBay can sometimes offer competitive bidding on used boats.

    How to Buy a Used Boat from a Private Seller

    What’s the next move after discovering a boat that catches your eye?

    Step One: Know the Basics

    Before buying anything, you need to know what you are getting into. 

    By asking key questions, you can pre-qualify the seller and determine whether the boat meets your initial criteria. Here are some key things to consider:

    • Location Inquiry: Verify the current location of the boat. Knowing where the boat is docked or stored can affect logistics for viewing and potentially shipping.
    • Readiness for Use: Determine if the boat is seaworthy and ready for immediate use. Ask if the boat can be launched into the water without the need for additional repairs or maintenance.
    • Maintenance Records: Request service and maintenance records. This documentation can provide insight into the boat’s history and how well it has been cared for.
    • Reason for Sale: Understanding the seller’s motivation can give you context and may aid in negotiations. 

    Additionally, a seller looking to sell the boat may be more willing to negotiate.

    If you are content with the answers to your questions and have trust in the seller’s reliability and the boat’s state, it’s time to proceed to the next phase: arranging an in-person viewing.

    How to Buy a Used Boat from a Private Seller_ Our go-to Strategy valley marine

    Preparing for an In-Person Viewing

    When planning to view the boat, keep the following in mind: the date and time that works for both parties and the weather conditions.

    Checklist Creation

    Prepare a detailed checklist of what you want to inspect, including the hull, engines, sails, electronics, and interior.

    The Golden Rule: Don’t Buy Before You See the Boat

    While this advice may seem obvious, there are individuals who purchase boats sight unseen. We implore you not to fall into this category.

    While it may be appealing to take a leap of faith based on pictures and descriptions, such risks often lead to disappointment or even outright scams.

    A visual inspection allows you to identify potential problems that may not be apparent in photos or during a conversation.

    By visiting the boat, you’re able to conduct a comprehensive evaluation, checking everything from the hull’s integrity to the condition of the engine. Check our free guide on what to look for when buying a used boat.

    While many sellers are forthright, they aren’t required by law to voluntarily disclose every issue with their vessel. 

    Your in-person visit serves as a prime opportunity to converse with the seller, obtain a sense of their honesty, and ask probing questions about the boat’s history and condition. 

    Ask for Help

    If you’re unable to view the vessel for any reason, consider asking a trusted friend to inspect it on your behalf.

    If the boat is far from your home and your friend can’t inspect it, ask for a live video call. The seller can show you around the boat and answer your questions in real time.

    A Sea Trial is a Must.

    Just looking at the boat isn’t enough. Make sure to ask the seller to get the vessel on water and give it a run. 

    Make sure to check the engine hours, the protection gear, and all the inside and outside mechanical parts while the boat is running. 

    When you’re on the test ride, you can see how the boat moves, how fast it goes, and make sure everything works the way it’s supposed to.

    How to Buy a Used Boat from a Private Seller_ Our go-to Strategy Marine Nebraska

    Hire a Professional Inspector 

    If you’re uncertain about inspecting the technical aspects of a boat, consider hiring an expert to evaluate it before making a purchase decision.

    This person is called a marine surveyor, and they will be able to find any problems with the boat that you might not notice. 

    You can bring the expert with you when you go look at the boat or when you take it out on the water.

    Check the Paperwork

    When you’re buying a boat, you’ll need certain papers to legally own it. 

    The papers you might need can change depending on where you buy the boat since each state has different regulations. 

    Always make sure the seller has all the right paperwork ready before you agree to buy the boat and pay any money; make sure you are not causing any legal trouble that might come with a boat. 

    Finalize the Deal with a Formal Contract

    When you’re sure you’ve found the right boat and have come to an agreement on the price and conditions with the seller, it’s time to get everything in writing. 

    A formal contract, or Purchase Agreement, is crucial. This document should outline all the specifics of the deal, including:

    • The agreed-upon sale price
    • A detailed description of the boat (make, model, year, hull identification number),
    • Included equipment and features
    • Any warranties or guarantees provided
    • Payment terms and schedule
    • The date of the sale and when you’ll take ownership of the boat
    • Responsibilities of both buyer and seller until the final transaction is complete.
    How to Buy a Used Boat from a Private Seller_ Our go-to Strategy Marine Nebraska

    Make Sure It’s Legally Binding

    A properly written contract protects both you and the seller if any issues arise before the sale is finalized. It’s a good idea to have a legal professional or a broker with experience in boat sales look over the contract to ensure that it’s fair and legally binding. 

    Choose a Smart Form of Payment

    Let’s be honest: taking thousands of dollars in cash to meet a stranger and buy a boat is not the best idea.

    Picking a secure payment method is key to ensuring both parties’ safety. So, instead of carrying a large sum of money in your wallet, consider these alternatives:

    • Certified Check: This is a check guaranteed by a bank, ensuring that the funds are available and will be securely transferred to the seller’s account upon deposit.
    • Bank Transfer: Electronic funds transfer (EFT) or bank wire transfer is a direct way to send money from your bank account to the seller’s account. It’s fast and secure.
    • Escrow Service: Using a third-party escrow service can add an extra layer of protection. 

    The escrow company holds onto your payment until you’ve received the boat and all the agreed-upon conditions have been met.

    Whichever method you choose, make sure to document the transaction. Request a receipt or payment confirmation for records. 

    How to Buy a Used Boat from a Private Seller: Is this the right option for you?

    Deciding whether buying a used boat from a private seller is your best course of action can depend on various factors, including your personal experience, available time, and comfort with the process.

    To buy a boat from a private seller, you need disposable time and resources to go and inspect each option with the care it needs. 

    Sure, buying directly from a private seller may offer a more negotiable price point and the potential for a great deal. However, it requires a lot of due diligence.

    If you’re not convinced or believe this route might be too demanding, there are indeed alternatives that can simplify the process.

    Consider a Boat Broker

    A boat broker acts as an intermediary, leveraging industry knowledge and networks to find suitable boats and handle negotiations. 

    The broker’s expertise can help streamline the purchase process and provide peace of mind, especially for those new to boat buying.

    Explore Boat Dealerships

    Visiting a reputable dealer, such as Valley Marine, could serve as a one-stop solution. Dealers typically offer:

    • Expertise: Boat dealers understand their inventory and can guide you to options that fit your needs.
    • Convenience: Dealers may offer financing options, warranties, and inclusive services like registration and titling.
    • Selection: A one-stop place with a wide range of boats to choose from, often with thorough pre-sale inspections and refurbishments.

    At Valley Marine, our aim is to provide exceptional service and quality to help you find the boat you are looking for.

    Need a Boat?

    Looking for a new boat? At Valley Marine, our knowledgeable team can guide you through the process of finding the ideal boat that meets all the necessary requirements. 

    Let us help you ensure that the boat you choose is equipped with the required safety equipment, meets all other legal obligations, and starts enjoying your life out in the water.

    Valley-Marine-Used-Boat for summer
    THIS IS VALLEY MARINE

    We have all heard that old saying… “You are the company you keep.” In everything we do at Valley Marine, our goal is to be the company you keep. That helpful friend you call with a problem. That place you drop by just to say hello and share a laugh. Our dealership is comprised of an incredible team of people, all boaters ourselves, with a common purpose- to give you, our customer, the very best on water. It’s simple really. The Golden Rule. Treat others the way you would like to be treated.

    Thank you for this opportunity to introduce ourselves. Please click on each member of our team to learn a little bit more about who we are and how we got here.

    Integrity. Boating. Company.

    BEST ON THE WATER

    Nebraska’s boating season is too short as it is. The last thing our customers need is to miss out on the precious season while their boat is in for repairs. At Valley Marine we understand this issue. That is why we have a complete service department comprised of six award-winning mechanics to help get you back out on the water as soon as possible.

    Valley Marine is pleased to offer on-site lake service testing for any boat that has been in our shop for repair. We the only dealer in Nebraska to offer this unique service to our customers. For the utmost in customer convenience, Valley Marine even offers a Mobile Service team that can make a “dock call” right to your boat.

    When Nebraska’s precious boating seasons comes to an end, just give us a call. We’ll come pick up your boat and store it inside one of our four spacious storage sheds. Now that’s service!

  • Tips for Planning the Ultimate Lake Camping Trip

    Tips for Planning the Ultimate Lake Camping Trip

    The Ultimate Lake Camping Trip: A Guide

    If you’ve ever wanted to experience the ultimate lake camping trip and wake up to the gentle lapping of waves and the symphony of birdsong, this may interest you. 

    We’ll be sharing tips, tricks, and a whole lot of friendly advice to ensure your lakeside camping experience is nothing short of extraordinary. Let’s get started!

    Camping for Beginners by the Lakeside: The Benefits of the Outdoor Bliss

    Lakeside camping offers a therapeutic escape from the hustle of daily life, providing a sanctuary where the soothing sounds and the fresh air create a serene backdrop for relaxation. 

    Stress-free and relaxed

    The tranquil ambiance of a lakeside setting allows beginners to ease into the camping experience, offering a gentle introduction to the wonders of outdoor bliss.

    One of the notable benefits of lakeside camping is the immediate connection with nature. The proximity to the water allows them to immerse themselves in the calming influence of natural elements.  

    Lakeside camping offers an opportunity to unplug from the digital world and reconnect with the simplicity of nature, promoting mental well-being and reducing stress.

    Tips-for-Planning-the-Ultimate-Lake-Camping-Trip-1

    Recreational activities

    Moreover, lakeside camping introduces beginners to a variety of recreational activities. From fishing and kayaking to lakeside strolls and birdwatching, the options are as diverse as the natural surroundings. 

    These activities not only add an element of adventure but also encourage physical activity and appreciation for the diverse ecosystems found around lakes. 

    Beginners can partake in these activities at their own pace, fostering a sense of accomplishment and confidence in their outdoor abilities.

    Ultimately, lakeside camping is more than just a getaway – it’s a gateway to a holistic and rejuvenating outdoor experience for camping novices.

    Choosing the Perfect Lakeside Campsite: Crafting Your Tranquil Retreat

    Selecting the ideal lakeside campsite can significantly influence the overall enjoyment of your camping experience. As you embark on your lakeside adventure, consider it akin to finding your piece of paradise. 

    Begin by scouting for a spot that offers both visual serenity and practicality. Ideally, you’ll want a location close enough to the water to enjoy it but far enough to ensure safety and compliance with camping regulations.

    Consider the lay of the land when choosing your lakeside haven. Look for level ground that will make pitching your tent easy and provide a comfortable sleeping surface. Be mindful of the natural surroundings, avoiding areas with overhanging branches or potential hazards. 

    If you’re camping in a designated area, familiarize yourself with any guidelines or restrictions to ensure a respectful and responsible camping experience.

    Proximity to amenities can also play a role in your campsite selection. If you prefer a rustic experience, you might opt for a more secluded spot away from facilities. 

    However, if you value convenience, proximity to amenities like restrooms or water sources could be a priority. Striking the right balance between seclusion and accessibility will contribute to a lakeside retreat that aligns with your camping preferences.

    In essence, choosing the perfect lakeside campsite involves a blend of aesthetics,

    practicality, and personal preference. Take your time exploring the available options.

    Essential Lakeside Camping Gear: Equipping Yourself for Lakeside Bliss

    As you embark on your lakeside camping adventure, having the right gear is key to ensuring a comfortable and enjoyable experience. Each item serves a specific purpose in facilitating your stay in nature. 

    Here’s a breakdown of the essential lakeside camping gear that will prepare you for an easy-going outdoor escape.

    Tips-for-Planning-the-Ultimate-Lake-Camping-Trip-2

    Tent

    Your lake camping experience begins with the right tent. Choose one that suits your size, weather resistance, and ease of setup. 

    A quality tent provides shelter and a cozy sanctuary against the backdrop of the lakeside landscape.

    Sleeping Bag

    Invest in a sleeping bag appropriate for the expected temperature. Lakeside nights can vary, so having a sleeping bag that offers warmth while being breathable is crucial for a restful sleep.

    Camping Stove and Cookware

    Lakeside camping doesn’t mean sacrificing good meals. A portable camping stove and cookware set allow you to ensure you are well-fed in the outdoors.

    Lighting

    As the sun sets over the lake, having reliable lighting becomes essential. Headlamps, lanterns, or LED string lights not only illuminate your campsite but also add a touch of ambiance to your lakeside retreat.

    Water Filtration System

    Ensure access to clean water with a portable water filtration system. Lake camping often means proximity to water sources, and having a reliable method to purify water is crucial for hydration.

    Navigation Tools

    Lakeside environments can be expansive, and having navigation tools like a map, compass, or GPS device ensures you can explore the surroundings confidently and safely.

    Insect Repellent

    Pack insect repellent to ward off mosquitoes and other pesky insects, allowing you to fully enjoy your time by the water even during the colder months.

    First Aid Kit

    Safety is paramount. A well-stocked first aid kit should be part of your essential gear, equipped to handle minor injuries or ailments that may occur during your lakeside adventure.

    Equipping yourself with the right lake camping gear ensures that you’re well-prepared to embrace nature while enjoying the convenience and comfort of a thoughtfully curated lakeside getaway.

    The Missouri River destination in Nebraska

    Lakeside Campfire Safety: Embracing the Warmth Responsibly

    A crackling campfire by the lakeside is not just a source of warmth; it’s a centerpiece for storytelling, laughter, and creating lasting memories. 

    However, with this delightful lakeside tradition comes the responsibility of ensuring the safety of both yourself and the surrounding environment.

    Here’s a comprehensive guide to lakeside campfire safety, allowing you to enjoy the glow of the flames while respecting the nature that surrounds you.

    Site Selection

    Choose a designated fire ring or an established fire pit if available. If not, select a spot at least 15 feet away from tents, trees, and other flammable materials.

    Clear the area around the fire pit from dry leaves, twigs, and overhanging branches to create a safe zone.

    Gather the Right Materials

     Use only local firewood to prevent the spread of pests and diseases. Have ample water and a shovel nearby for quick extinguishing if needed.

    Follow Leave No Trace Principles

    Keep your campfire small and manageable. A modest fire not only reduces the risk of accidents but also minimizes your impact on the surrounding ecosystem.

    Avoid burning plastics, food waste, or other non-natural materials that can produce harmful fumes and damage the environment.

    Be Weather-Wise

    Check local fire regulations and weather conditions before lighting a fire. High winds or dry conditions may pose increased fire risks.

    Don’t forget to extinguish the fire completely before leaving the campsite or going to bed.

    Safe Ignition and Extinguishing

    Use a fire starter, not flammable liquids, to ignite the fire. This ensures a controlled and safer start.

    When extinguishing the fire, pour water on the embers and stir them with a shovel. Repeat until everything is cool to the touch.

    Supervise at All Times

    Never leave a campfire unattended. Assign someone to be in charge of the fire whenever it’s burning. Keep children and pets at a safe distance from the fire.

    Know Local Regulations

    Familiarize yourself with the specific regulations regarding campfires in the area. Some locations may have restrictions based on the time of year or environmental conditions.

    Be Prepared for Emergencies

    Have a first aid kit nearby in case of minor burns or injuries. Know the location of the nearest emergency services and have a communication plan in place.

    By embracing lakeside campfire safety practices, you not only contribute to a safer camping experience but also play a vital role in preserving the natural environment for future generations. 

    Enjoy the warmth of lakeside campfires responsibly, ensuring a harmonious coexistence between outdoor recreation and environmental conservation.

    Tips-for-Planning-the-Ultimate-Lake-Camping-Trip-5

    Easy Camp Meals and Cooking by the Lake: Savoring Simplicity with Lakeside Delights

    Embrace the simplicity of campfire cooking and portable stoves as you cook easy, delicious meals that add a touch to your outdoor adventure. 

    Here’s a guide to easy camp meals and cooking by the lake:

    One-Pot Wonders

    Simplify your lakeside cooking with one-pot meals that minimize cleanup. Think hearty stews, chili, or pasta dishes where all ingredients come together in a single pot, allowing you to focus on enjoying the lakeside views rather than washing dishes.

    Also, when using the right ingredients, these types of meals will leave you full and with the necessary energy to seek adventure and practice recreational activities.

    Campfire Classics

    If you don’t want to over-complicate your meal plan, you can always rely on timeless favorites and snacks.

    Roasting marshmallows for s’mores or cooking hot dogs on sticks requires minimal preparation, making it an ideal lakeside activity for all ages.

    Foil Packet Creations

    Explore the versatility of foil packet cooking or easy prep options that you can work on when still at home.

    Wrap seasoned vegetables, proteins, and a touch of your favorite sauce in foil, then let them cook over the campfire or portable grill. This method seals in flavors and simplifies cleanup.

    Portable Grilling

    Bring a compact grill for lakeside barbecues. Grill up burgers, kebabs, or fresh fish for a lakeside feast. The smoky flavors and open-air cooking enhance the overall experience.

    Lakeside Breakfast Delights

    Start your day with easy lakeside breakfasts. Opt for oatmeal with a variety of toppings, breakfast wraps, or even a quick scramble with pre-chopped ingredients for a hassle-free morning.

    You may want to add fruit that is rich in water to complement your breakfast or any other meal during the day.

    Also, if you are bringing kids, a bowl of cereal will always be a great breakfast that is easy to eat and mess-free. 

    Lakeside Beverages

    Remember to elevate your lakeside meals with refreshing beverages. Pack a thermos with hot cocoa for chilly evenings, or prepare a batch of iced tea to stay cool during the day.

    Cast Iron Cooking

    Bring a cast-iron skillet for versatile lakeside cooking. From breakfast to dinner, a cast-iron skillet can handle a range of recipes that will let you have a versatile meal plan when in the outdoors.

    By embracing easy camp meals and cooking by the lake, you not only nourish yourself with delicious sustenance but also infuse your camping adventure.

    Whether you’re a gourmet enthusiast or a cooking amateur, lakeside dining offers a chance to savor the simplicity and create flavorful memories.

    Tips-for-Planning-the-Ultimate-Lake-Camping-Trip-3

    Safety Tips for Lake Camping: Ensuring a Secure Lakeside Retreat

    Lastly, we want to share some overall safety tips for Lake Camping. Enjoying the lakeside is an immersive experience with nature’s beauty, but safety should always be a top priority to fully enjoy your outdoor adventure. 

    Here’s a comprehensive guide to ensure a secure and worry-free camping experience by the lake:

    Water Safety Awareness 

    Familiarize yourself with the lake’s water conditions and any potential hazards. Know the depth, currents, and underwater terrain before swimming or participating in water activities.

    Always wear a life jacket when engaging in water sports, especially if you’re not a confident swimmer.

    Campsite Placement

    Choose a campsite that is a safe distance from the water’s edge. This helps prevent accidents, especially if the water levels fluctuate.

    Be aware of potential flood zones and avoid setting up camp in low-lying areas during rainy seasons.

    Responsible Campfire Practices

    As we previously mentioned, follow proper campfire safety guidelines to minimize the risk of wildfires. Keep a safe distance from tents, trees, and other flammable materials.

    Never leave a campfire unattended, and ensure it is fully extinguished before leaving the campsite or going to sleep.

    Weather Preparedness

    Stay informed about the weather forecast for the duration of your camping trip. Be prepared for sudden changes in weather conditions, including rain, storms, or temperature drops.

    Have a reliable weather radio or smartphone app to receive updates during your stay.

    Wildlife Awareness

    Learn about the local wildlife in the area and understand how to coexist responsibly. Keep food stored securely to avoid attracting unwanted animal visitors to your campsite.

    Keep a safe distance from wildlife, especially larger animals, and never feed them.

    Practice with Navigation Tools

    You can carry a map, compass, or GPS device to navigate the lakeside surroundings confidently but if you don’t practice using them beforehand, trying to find your way around the outdoors can be difficult.

    Try to familiarize yourself with the trails and terrain to avoid getting lost. Let someone know your planned routes and expected return time before venturing into the wilderness.

    Insect Protection

    Protect yourself from insect bites by using appropriate repellents and wearing long sleeves and pants during dawn and dusk when mosquitoes are most active.

    Inspect your camping gear, tent, and sleeping bags for insects before settling in.

    lake camping trip

    Emergency Contacts

    Have a list of emergency contacts readily available. Include local emergency services, park rangers, and contacts for friends or family who are not on the camping trip.

    By incorporating these safety tips into your lakeside camping routine, you’ll create a secure environment that allows you to fully appreciate the natural wonders around you. 

    A well-prepared and safety-conscious approach ensures that your lakeside retreat is not only enjoyable but also a memorable experience for all the right reasons.

    As we bring our journey to a close, planning the perfect lakeside camping trip is more than a logistical endeavor; it’s an invitation to embrace the serenity of nature and create memories that will linger in your heart.

    From choosing the ideal lakeside campsite to savoring easy camp meals and ensuring safety by the water’s edge, each tip shared aims to enhance your lakeside experience. 

    As you embark on your lakeside retreat, may you find solace in the simplicity of a crackling campfire, delight in the flavors of lakeside cuisine, and revel in the safety and security of a well-prepared camping expedition.

    Come to Valley Marine

    If you want to learn more about everything lake-related and have fun with a new boat and have an amazing lake camping experience, At Vally Marine we are waiting for you. 

    We understand the excitement of experiencing lake adventures and relaxing days. 

    Come and choose your new boat!

    2017-cobalt-r5-wideshot
    THIS IS VALLEY MARINE

    We have all heard that old saying… “You are the company you keep.” In everything we do at Valley Marine, our goal is to be the company you keep. That helpful friend you call with a problem. That place you drop by just to say hello and share a laugh. Our dealership is comprised of an incredible team of people, all boaters ourselves, with a common purpose- to give you, our customer, the very best on water. It’s simple really. The Golden Rule. Treat others the way you would like to be treated.

    Thank you for this opportunity to introduce ourselves. Please click on each member of our team to learn a little bit more about who we are and how we got here.

    Integrity. Boating. Company.

    BEST ON THE WATER

    Nebraska’s boating season is too short as it is. The last thing our customers need is to miss out on the precious season while their boat is in for repairs. At Valley Marine we understand this issue. That is why we have a complete service department comprised of six award-winning mechanics to help get you back out on the water as soon as possible.

    Valley Marine is pleased to offer on-site lake service testing for any boat that has been in our shop for repair. We the only dealer in Nebraska to offer this unique service to our customers. For the utmost in customer convenience, Valley Marine even offers a Mobile Service team that can make a “dock call” right to your boat.

    When Nebraska’s precious boating seasons comes to an end, just give us a call. We’ll come pick up your boat and store it inside one of our four spacious storage sheds. Now that’s service!

  • The Ultimate Guide for Parking a Boat Like a Pro

    The Ultimate Guide for Parking a Boat Like a Pro

    Parking a Boat: Become a Dock Master 

    Parking a boat is no easy job,  and if you are googling how to do so, chances are you’re either a brand new boat owner or haven’t docked in a while. 

    Either way, we got you! Sit tight as we dive into this boat parking lesson. Yes, we’re talking about the water equivalent of parallel parking.

    This job is mostly about practice and patience, but at least, on the water, there’s less chance of people honking at you while you learn! 

    Safety First

    Just like parking your car in a crowded lot, docking your boat in a marina involves maneuvering around other boats while trying not to hit anything or anyone. 

    Parking without any prior training is not only difficult, but you might be dealing with unexpected situations and can even damage your new price possessions! 

    So here is everything you need to know to park the right way!

    The Ultimate Guide for Parking a Boat valley marine

    Fenders: Protect Yours and Your Neighbor Boat 

    Fender and bumpers: Why do you need them?

    Picture this: You’ve just spent a small fortune on a shiny new sleek boat. You’re cruising into the marina, wind in your hair, when BAM! You misjudge your approach and scrape against the dock. 

    Or worst, you park your boat right were it belongs, just to be destroyed by the friction with the dock in a stormy night.

    That’s right! The dock itself can be a menace to your boat. Those wooden or metal edges can easily wreak havoc on your boat’s exterior. 

    Suddenly, your beautiful boat has a not-so-beautiful scratch running down its side. Not to mention, you can damage another person’s boat. 

    This is why you need a bumper, or fenders as they’re technically called, which are absolutely essential for any boat owner. 

    These devices act as a cushion between your boat and the dock (or another boat), absorbing shock and preventing damage during docking. 

    When it comes to protecting your investment from scratches, dents, or worse, it’s better to be safe than sorry!

    Parking a Boat_ Become a Dock Master

    Why is it Important to Park Your Boat Correctly?

    Incorrectly parked boats can pose risks to both the boat owner and other boaters.

    For instance, a boat that’s not securely tied could drift away and collide with other vessels, potentially causing accidents or injuries. 

    Moreover, a drifting boat can become a navigational hazard, obstructing the path of other vessels and possibly leading to collisions. 

    By parking your boat correctly, you reduce these risks, ensuring a safe environment for everyone on the water.

    Upholding Boating Etiquette and Respect for Others

    Lastly, correct boat parking is a matter of etiquette and respect for other boaters. The waters are a shared space, and everyone using them should do so considerately.

    By parking your boat correctly, you show consideration for others by not taking up excessive space, blocking accessways, or creating unnecessary hazards. 

    This fosters a sense of community among boaters and makes the waters a more enjoyable place for everyone.

    How to park a Boat_ Become a Dock Master

    Conducting Pre-Arrival Checks

    Before you even approach the dock, it’s crucial to conduct several pre-arrival checks. First among these is checking for available space. 

    Just like parking a car, you need enough room to maneuver your boat into its docking position without hitting other boats or the dock itself.

    Next, you should assess the wind and current conditions.

    Wind direction and speed, as well as water currents, can significantly affect your ability to control your boat during docking. 

    Understanding these conditions will help you decide the best approach and angle for docking and whether any adjustments need to be made to your usual procedures.

    Communicating with Marina Staff or Dock Hands

    If available, marina staff or dock hands can be invaluable in assisting with docking your boat, even help from friends and boat neighbors. 

    They can provide real-time advice on the best way to approach the dock based on current conditions and can physically assist with mooring lines, making the process smoother and safer.

    Use clear, concise language and standard boating terms to avoid misunderstandings.

    Preparing Your Boat for Docking

    Once you’ve completed your pre-arrival checks and communicated with the people arround, it’s time to prepare your boat for docking.

    Firstly, ensure your fenders are out. They should be positioned at the point of contact with the dock and adjusted to the correct height based on the tide.

    Next, have your mooring lines ready. Depending on your boat’s size and the dock configuration, you may need bow, stern, and spring lines. 

    Ready? 

    Valley Marine Nebraska

    1- Approach the Dock Slowly

    Start your docking process by gradually reducing your boat’s speed as you approach the dock. 

    This slow approach gives you more time to assess the situation and make necessary adjustments.

    Remember, it’s always safer and easier to correct your course at a slower speed. Speed can lead to miscalculations and potential collisions.

    Tip: Use a method known as “bump and coast,” where you momentarily put the engine in gear to make a course adjustment, then return it to neutral to slow down, allowing the boat to glide towards the dock.

    2- Use Small Adjustments

    As you near the dock, use small, incremental adjustments to align your boat correctly. 

    Sharp turns or drastic changes in speed can make the boat harder to control, leading to misalignment or collision with the dock.

    Remember that your boat’s steering behavior changes depending on whether you’re in forward or reverse.

    Valley-Marine-Used-Boat for summer

    3- Factor in Wind and Current

    Wind direction and water current can significantly affect your boat’s movement. Always consider these natural forces when docking.

    If the wind or current is pushing your boat away from the dock, you might need to approach at a slightly steeper angle or higher speed.

    If possible, try to dock with the wind or current pushing your boat towards the dock. This way, these natural forces can help you rather than hinder your docking process.

    4- Adjust the Boat Position as Needed

    After securing the bow and stern lines, assess your boat’s position. If it’s not close enough to the dock, or if it’s at an incorrect angle, you’ll need to make adjustments. 

    You can do this by loosening or tightening the mooring lines and using the boat’s engine to gently nudge the boat into the correct position.

    Tip: Keep an eye on tide levels if you’re docking for a long period. You may need to adjust your mooring lines as the tide rises or falls to prevent your boat from becoming untied or damaging the dock.

    Ready to Park a Boat Like a Pro?

    Docking a boat is a skill that requires practice, precision, and patience. Even seasoned boaters can make mistakes, particularly when under pressure or facing challenging conditions.

    By being aware of your environment, following these parking tips, and taking steps to avoid accidents, you can ensure a smooth and safe docking experience every time.

    Need a Boat?

    Looking for a new boat? At Valley Marine, our knowledgeable team can guide you through the process of finding the ideal boat that meets all the necessary requirements. 

    Let us help you ensure that the boat you choose is equipped with the required safety equipment, meets all other legal obligations, and starts enjoying your life out in the water. 

    Boston Whaler, the best boat for you this season
    THIS IS VALLEY MARINE

    We have all heard that old saying… “You are the company you keep.” In everything we do at Valley Marine, our goal is to be the company you keep. That helpful friend you call with a problem. That place you drop by just to say hello and share a laugh. Our dealership is comprised of an incredible team of people, all boaters ourselves, with a common purpose- to give you, our customer, the very best on water. It’s simple really. The Golden Rule. Treat others the way you would like to be treated.

    Thank you for this opportunity to introduce ourselves. Please click on each member of our team to learn a little bit more about who we are and how we got here.

    Integrity. Boating. Company.

    BEST ON THE WATER

    Nebraska’s boating season is too short as it is. The last thing our customers need is to miss out on the precious season while their boat is in for repairs. At Valley Marine we understand this issue. That is why we have a complete service department comprised of six award-winning mechanics to help get you back out on the water as soon as possible.

    Valley Marine is pleased to offer on-site lake service testing for any boat that has been in our shop for repair. We the only dealer in Nebraska to offer this unique service to our customers. For the utmost in customer convenience, Valley Marine even offers a Mobile Service team that can make a “dock call” right to your boat.

    When Nebraska’s precious boating seasons comes to an end, just give us a call. We’ll come pick up your boat and store it inside one of our four spacious storage sheds. Now that’s service!

  • The Best Boating Tips: YouTube Channels for Boating Lovers

    The Best Boating Tips: YouTube Channels for Boating Lovers

    YouTube Tips for Boating Lovers

    Looking for the best boating tips and quality content about boats? If you have no one to ask about your boating concerns, simply have no time to ask your local boat dealer, or just want to spend some time watching good content, don’t worry; we’ve got you. 

    We are boat and water lovers like you! And we, too, want to keep up with trends and news in the boating community.  We also understand that having a boat for the first time can be an overwhelming experience, especially when you know nothing about maintenance and repairs.

    Look, explaining every boat detail for beginners will take us forever, and we’ll probably end up with a boring 100-page PDF; that is why we have decided to share our favorite YouTube channels that will make your boating experience much smoother.

    Have any questions? Want to know more about boats? Don’t know which boat to get? You can always take a look at these channels and find all the information you are looking for! 

    Or, you know, just give us a call… without further ado, here are your new must-watch channels. 

    Born Again Boating

    Born Again Boating is your trusted guide to everything about boating. 

    This channel Is packed with the best technical tips and important boat stuff you need to know if you are a first-time boat owner or if you want to repair and maintain your boat by yourself. 

    Join Aaron in his daily life repairing boats, you will sure learn something from his helpful tips. 

    You can find all about engine repairs, cleaning, basic maintenance, and professional maneuvers. 

    The Wake Channel

    If your thing is extreme sports and a rush of adrenaline, look no further than the Wake Channel with Trevor and Nik. 

    From extreme water sports to fun-filled weekends at the lake or the sea, these two fun guys share their sports activities and how to do them correctly. 

    Sure, not all of these tricks and games are safe to try for yourself, but you can get some good ideas for your family weekend trip or an exciting day with your friends.

    So, if you are looking for fun ideas for your weekend at Nebraska lakes or some tips to perfect your water sports performance, you know where to look.  

    If you still want a closer look at what they do, you can listen to their Fresh Squeeze podcast, where they dive deeper into all types of boating topics. 

    Gale Force Twins

    The Gale twins know how to double down on the fun and the learning. They ditched their pre-med degrees and got their captain license to live an outdoor life on the water. 

    If there’s one thing that Emily and Amanda want to accomplish, it is to educate and entertain their viewers with real, useful content. 

    So, if you want to stay on top of boating rules while making the most of your boat, look no further than the Gale Force Twins

    Their YouTube channel is a treasure trove of educational videos, where they vlog about their adventures on the water and share useful tips for aspiring sailors.

    Each video is unique, showcasing not only their fishing and boating skills but also their infectious enthusiasm for the outdoor lifestyle.

    Len’s Cove Lessons in Boating

    Imagine that cool uncle or friend who always seems to know everything about everything. The one who can solve even the most complicated boat situation like it is nothing; that’s Len

    He’s the guru of boating queries and maintenance. He’ll help you pick the perfect boat for your needs, whether that’s a sleek speedboat for those Nebraska lake fantasies or a comfy family boat.

    Len will teach you how to use your boat like a seasoned sailor. From tying the perfect knot to navigating treacherous waters. 

    Whatever you need, Len’s got you covered. And the best part? It’s all free on his YouTube channel.

    Flukemaster

    If you like fishing more than anything, then the Flukemaster is your go-to guide to becoming a pro. 

    Gene Jensen is a fisherman; that’s not merely something that he does; that IS who he is. From a very young age, his father taught him everything about the outdoors and the fishing world, and he has never stopped since. 

    Gene’s YouTube channel is every fisher paradise. It’s full of tips and tricks to help you level up your fishing game. 

    Whether you’re a novice or a seasoned sea dog, there’s something here for everyone. He’ll teach you how to bait like a boss, cast like a champion, and reel in your catch like a true master. 

    Aquaholic

    Are you a big fan of boats? Maybe you are looking for the perfect boat for you or want to dive deeper into the luxury boat field. 

    If this is you, then Aquaholic is the channel you want to tune in to. From runabouts and high-performance cruisers to sailboats and superyachts, Nick Burnham covers it all. 

    If you dream of having a virtual tour of the latest boast without leaving the comfort of your house, Aquaholic most likely would have a video about that new boat you want to see. 

    Get the lowdown on boat specifications, costs, perks, amenities, and more. It’s almost as good as owning a luxury yacht – minus the hefty price tag!

    Nebraska Game and Parks Commission

    Attention all Nebraska folks! This is your go-to source for information on the best boating spots, local regulations, and special events happening in Nebraska’s parks and recreational areas.

    The Nebraska Games and Parks Commission channel offers a treasure of educational content. 

    Want to know more about the state’s diverse wildlife? They’ve got you covered. Interested in learning about conservation efforts in the area? There’s plenty of content for that, too. Looking for upcoming events for boaters and fishers? Here is where to look! 

    The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission is committed to educating Nebraskans about the importance of preserving their state’s unique ecosystems and their lakes clean and giving the best instructions to have a safe, yet fun, time on the water.

    Valley Marine

    Looking for a new or used boat? We are the best boat dealership in Nebraska! Here you will find our latest arrivals and later news. 

    However, at Valley Marine, we aren’t just boat dealers; we are a community of boating enthusiasts who share a love for the water. 

    Our channel is a virtual dock where you can tie up and take a break from your daily routine. 

    Also, you can get to know our lovely staff of boating enthusiasts and our premium location in Omaha!

    Need a Boat?

    Looking for a new boat? At Valley Marine, our knowledgeable team can guide you through the process of finding the ideal boat that meets all the necessary requirements. 

    Let us help you ensure that the boat you choose is equipped with the required safety equipment, meets all other legal obligations, and starts enjoying your life out in the water. 

    Best boating tips
    THIS IS VALLEY MARINE

    We have all heard that old saying… “You are the company you keep.” In everything we do at Valley Marine, our goal is to be the company you keep. That helpful friend you call with a problem. That place you drop by just to say hello and share a laugh. Our dealership is comprised of an incredible team of people, all boaters ourselves, with a common purpose- to give you, our customer, the very best on water. It’s simple really. The Golden Rule. Treat others the way you would like to be treated.

    Thank you for this opportunity to introduce ourselves. Please click on each member of our team to learn a little bit more about who we are and how we got here.

    Integrity. Boating. Company.

    BEST ON THE WATER

    Nebraska’s boating season is too short as it is. The last thing our customers need is to miss out on the precious season while their boat is in for repairs. At Valley Marine we understand this issue. That is why we have a complete service department comprised of six award-winning mechanics to help get you back out on the water as soon as possible.

    Valley Marine is pleased to offer on-site lake service testing for any boat that has been in our shop for repair. We the only dealer in Nebraska to offer this unique service to our customers. For the utmost in customer convenience, Valley Marine even offers a Mobile Service team that can make a “dock call” right to your boat.

    When Nebraska’s precious boating seasons comes to an end, just give us a call. We’ll come pick up your boat and store it inside one of our four spacious storage sheds. Now that’s service!

  • Nebraska Boat Laws for a Smooth and Easy Ride

    Nebraska Boat Laws for a Smooth and Easy Ride

    Why You Need to Learn the Nebraska Boat Laws

    Do you know all the Nebraska boat laws you need to follow for a safe and smooth ride? 

    Hitting the water is always more fun when you follow safe boating practices. Refreshing your knowledge on Nebraska’s boating regulations ensures you’re prepared before launch. 

    This blog serves as a helpful reminder of the rules before your next voyage.

    In Nebraska, boating is a popular activity, with over 180,000 registered motorboats in the state. But before you shove off from the dock, it’s important to know the laws and regulations that govern boating in Nebraska. 

    Following the rules ensures you stay safe while making the most of your time on the water.

    We combed through the 2023 Nebraska Boating Guide to highlight the key laws and tips boaters should know. 

    Read on for everything you need to cruise Nebraska waters without any trouble.

    Nebraska Boat Laws for a Smooth Ride, boats at Valley Marine

    The Importance of Understanding Nebraska Boat Laws

    If you already own a boat, understanding Nebraska boat laws will help you maintain your boat under the guidelines that the state requires. This will prevent costly fines and possible accidents. 

    However, if you are looking to buy a boat, familiarizing yourself with the rules and regulations will help you make informed decisions on the type of boat you’ll want to get. 

    Our team at Valley Marine can help you make the best decision to get the boat you need and want while still making it easy to meet all boat regulations required by law. 

    registration for valley marine

    Registering Your Vessel

    First things first – make sure your boat is properly registered with the county treasurer in your county of residence. All motorized boats in Nebraska, even little electric trolling motors, require registration. The registration length is three years, and renewal can be done online.

    Your registration numbers and validation sticker must be properly displayed on the forward half of the boat hull. Registrations aren’t transferable, so even if you just bought a used boat that’s currently registered, you need to register it in your name within 30 days.

    Certain boats like sailboards, inflatables, and race boats used in competitions can be exempt from registration requirements. But when in doubt, it’s best to register your vessel. Non-residents also need an Aquatic Invasive Species Stamp on their boats before launching from any Nebraska ramp.

    Boat Safety Equipment

    Nebraska law mandates the presence and proper functioning equipment of the following equipment in every boat to ensure safety.

    The specific safety equipment required on your boat depends on the size and type, but here are some of the essentials:

    Life Jackets/Flotation Devices

    Life jackets or personal flotation devices (PFDs), are essential safety equipment. They are designed to keep you and your loved ones afloat in the water and prevent drowning in the event of an accident or emergency. 

    Vessels less than 26 feet need a wearable life jacket for each person plus a throwable floating device. Larger boats need offshore life jackets

    Wearing a life jacket can be life-saving, especially for non-swimmers or in situations where unexpected circumstances arise.

    Nebraska Boat Laws for a Smooth Ride Life Jackets

    Fire Extinguisher

    Why would you need a fire extinguisher in the middle of a lake? A fire extinguisher with an enclosed fuel tank, enclosed space, or enclosed engine is required in every boat.

    Required for boats with closed compartments or fuel tanks.

    It serves as a crucial safety measure to combat potential fires that may occur due to fuel leaks, electrical malfunctions, or other hazards. 

    Oars

    Oars are important safety equipment, particularly for boats without an engine or when facing engine failure. 

    They provide a means of propulsion, allowing boaters to navigate and maneuver their vessel even if the primary mode of propulsion is not functioning.

    Bailing Bucket

    A bailing bucket is a simple yet essential piece of equipment used to remove water from the boat. 

    This is particularly important in situations where water enters the boat due to leaks, rain, or waves, potentially causing instability or sinking. 

    By bailing out excess water, boaters can maintain buoyancy and ensure the boat remains safe and stable.

    Nebraska Boat Laws for a Smooth Ride valley marine buckets

    Muffler

    A muffler is a device used to reduce the noise generated by the boat’s engine exhaust. It plays a crucial role in limiting noise pollution. 

    Compliance with muffler regulations helps protect the environment and maintain a peaceful atmosphere on the water.

    Whistle or Bell

    A whistle or bell is a sound-producing device required on boats to alert other boaters of their presence, especially during periods of reduced visibility. 

    The sound signals serve as a means of communication and can help prevent collisions or accidents.

    Nebraska Boat Laws for a Smooth Ride (3)

    Backfire Flame Arrestor

    A backfire flame arrestor is a safety device installed on the engine’s air intake system to prevent backfires from igniting flammable fuel vapors in the engine compartment. 

    It reduces the risk of engine fires caused by backfires and improves overall safety on motorized boats.

    Ventilating

    Adequate ventilation is crucial to dissipate any fuel vapors, reducing the risk of fire or explosion.

    This helps maintain a safe and breathable environment for boaters and ensures the longevity and performance of the boat’s systems.

    Adhering to these requirements ensures the safety and well-being of everyone on the water.

    Anchor Light

    Display a white light visible for 2 miles to avoid collisions after dark.

    Nebraska Boat Laws and Registration

    In Nebraska, all motorized boats in any public or private waters must be registered. The only time you must not register your boat is in the following scenarios or if you own the following boats. 

    • Motorboats registered in another state and housed in Nebraska for less than 60 consecutive days
    • Vessels owned by the government or political subdivision
    • Racing-type motorboats when competing in state events
    • Vessels documented by U.S. Coast Guard
    Nebraska Boat Laws for a Smooth Ride license

    New Registrations and Renewals

    New registrations and renewals can be processed through the county treasurer or the Nebraska Department of Games and Parks.

    If you are registering a new boat or renewing your existing registration, you can also choose to renew your registration online.

    Smooth Sailing: Nebraska Navigation Rules

    Besides having the proper gear, following basic navigation rules helps avoid mishaps on busy waterways.

    Scan the water before shoving off to understand where hazards may lurk. Pay attention to marker buoys – red means keep that side to your starboard (right) when headed upstream, while green marks the port (left) side.

    When two power boats meet head-on, each should steer to their respective right. Powerboats must yield to manually powered craft like canoes and kayaks. And sailboats have right-of-way over power boats.

    It also helps to know whistle and horn signals. One short blast means you intend to pass a boat ahead of you on the right. Five short blasts signal danger or need for assistance. Just no unnecessary whistling that could confuse other boaters.

    Boating in Specific Locations in Nebraska

    While there are general state regulations required for all boaters, these could change depending on the zone you are planning to visit. 

    Make sure to research the specific regulations before attending a reservoir, state park, or any other area that might have different regulations. 

     

    Nebraska’s state parks offer beautiful waterways for boating enthusiasts to enjoy. These regulations usually include speed limits, no-wake zones, designated swimming areas, and requirements for noise control. 

    Familiarize yourself with these regulations to ensure compliance and to maintain a safe and enjoyable boating experience for all.

    Nebraska Boat Laws in Reservoirs

    Nebraska’s reservoirs are popular destinations for boaters seeking scenic surroundings and recreational activities.

    Similar to state parks, reservoirs may have specific boating laws and regulations in place. 

    The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission’s Boating Guide can provide detailed information on the specific rules and guidelines applicable to each reservoir, ensuring that you

    can navigate these waters responsibly and legally.

    Nebraska Boat Laws for a Smooth Ride

    Mind Your Speed

    While it’s fun to open up the throttle when you have ample space, caution is required in certain areas. Obey posted speed limits and no wake zones (5 mph or less). Creating a wake near boats, docks, and swimming areas causes damage and safety hazards. 

    It’s also illegal to operate personal watercraft like Jet Skis between sunset and sunrise in Nebraska. And take it slow in areas like marinas and launch ramps. 

    Practice common courtesy, and safety comes naturally on the water.

    BUI Doesn’t Float in Nebraska

    Boating under the influence carries stiff penalties in Nebraska. Just like driving on land, it’s illegal to operate any boat with a blood alcohol content at or above .08 percent. Penalties include fines, possible jail time, and loss of boating privileges. 

    Avoid tragedy and only boat sober. Have a designated captain who stays alcohol-free. And wear life jackets since intoxicated passengers are at greater risk of falling overboard.  

    Need a Boat?

    Looking for a new boat? At Valley Marine, our knowledgeable team can guide you through the process of finding the ideal boat that meets all the necessary requirements. 

    Let us help you ensure that the boat you choose is equipped with the required safety equipment, meets all other legal obligations, and starts enjoying your life out in the water. 

    THIS IS VALLEY MARINE

    We have all heard that old saying… “You are the company you keep.” In everything we do at Valley Marine, our goal is to be the company you keep. That helpful friend you call with a problem. That place you drop by just to say hello and share a laugh. Our dealership is comprised of an incredible team of people, all boaters ourselves, with a common purpose- to give you, our customer, the very best on water. It’s simple really. The Golden Rule. Treat others the way you would like to be treated.

    Thank you for this opportunity to introduce ourselves. Please click on each member of our team to learn a little bit more about who we are and how we got here.

    Integrity. Boating. Company.

    BEST ON THE WATER

    Nebraska’s boating season is too short as it is. The last thing our customers need is to miss out on the precious season while their boat is in for repairs. At Valley Marine we understand this issue. That is why we have a complete service department comprised of six award-winning mechanics to help get you back out on the water as soon as possible.

    Valley Marine is pleased to offer on-site lake service testing for any boat that has been in our shop for repair. We the only dealer in Nebraska to offer this unique service to our customers. For the utmost in customer convenience, Valley Marine even offers a Mobile Service team that can make a “dock call” right to your boat.

    When Nebraska’s precious boating seasons comes to an end, just give us a call. We’ll come pick up your boat and store it inside one of our four spacious storage sheds. Now that’s service!

  • How to Buy a Used Boat: What to Look for

    How to Buy a Used Boat: What to Look for

    So you’re ready to take the plunge and invest in a used boat, exciting! However, boats aren’t cheap, and before making this important investment, we want to make sure you know how to buy a used boat so you get the best value for your money.

    What to look for in a used boat? It’s super important that you look into all the details and pick a boat in optimal condition; this way, it will be cheaper to maintain for years to come. Here are some key factors to consider when choosing your new vessel. 

    Purchasing a used boat in the summer comes with several distinct advantages. Firstly, it’s the perfect time to thoroughly inspect and test-drive the vessel under optimal weather conditions, ensuring its performance meets your expectations. 

    Additionally, private sellers and dealerships may have more inventory during these peak boating months, offering you a wider selection to choose from. Moreover, the summer season allows immediate enjoyment of your new boat, giving you plenty of time to familiarize yourself with the boat and address any minor issues.

    Hull and Deck Condition

    First, you’ll want to inspect the hull and deck condition since they provide structural integrity and protection. Hulls and decks that have been damaged or weakened by age can cause costly repairs down the road. Check for signs of wear and tear. If you find any, consider how much it will cost to fix. 

    One recommended technique is to tap gently along the hull and deck. You’re listening for a consistent sound, which indicates a solid fiberglass structure. Any changes in tone might suggest areas of concern, such as delamination or moisture damage.

    Furthermore, be cautious about any drilled holes in the mast near the deck and periodically inspect them to ensure there are no cracks. Cracks around these areas could imply structural stress and may require immediate attention.

    Used Boat Mechanical Issues

    Mechanical issues can be a major headache. Make sure to check the oil, lubricants, and battery condition; these things are essential for your boat’s functioning, so take the time to make sure it’s in good shape. Also, remember to give the wiring a quick look to make sure everything seems durable and stable. 

    If you’re not confident in your boat’s mechanical knowledge, don’t hesitate to contact a trusted mechanic for some help. Visit Vally Marine. Our expert technicians can help you answer all your mechanical questions. 

    Boat-sale-near-me-Omaha-Valley-Marine

    Used Boat Corrosion or Weathering

    Keep an eye out for any signs of corrosion or weathering that could indicate problems down the line. It’s also a good idea to ask your vendor if the boat’s engineering has ever been submerged or if the ship ever sunk. 

    You can also take a peek underneath the engine to ensure everything is in shape. Trust us, a little extra diligence can save you a boatload of problems and lost weekends lost out in the waters. 

    Used Boat engine Hours: 

    Engine hours on a boat refer to the total amount of time that its engine has been running. Much like the odometer in a car tracks miles driven, engine hours serve as an indicator of the boat’s usage and wear. 

    This measurement is crucial when assessing the condition and value of a used boat, as a higher number of engine hours might suggest more extensive wear or potential maintenance needs.

    While a boat’s engine hour can give you a pretty good idea of how much it has been used, it doesn’t provide a full account of HOW it was used; it’s just an indicator of the time on the water. The wear of a vessel can be much different between a relaxing vacation type of boat and a high sport extreme one. 

    Ask what was the use of the boat you are about to get. This will give you some idea of how those engine hours were spent. Knowing a boat’s engine hour can also indicate whether it’s time for a service soon. 

    There isn’t necessarily a “right” number of engine hours, but the typical range is between 75-100 hours per year. “There isn’t necessarily a “right” number of engine hours, but the typical range is between 75-100 hours per year. 

    used boat engine hours

    Trailer Quality

    Heading out to the lake with your brand-new boat is meant to be exciting, not frustrating. That’s why it’s crucial to ensure your trailer is in top shape so you don’t get stuck at home. 

    Begin with a thorough inspection of all moving parts, as these are the components that are most susceptible to wear and tear. Tires, for instance, should be checked before every trip.

    Look for signs of excessive wear, cracking, or embedded objects like nails or shards of glass. Additionally, tire pressure is critical to maintain; incorrect pressure can lead to poor handling or increased tire wear.

    Your trailer’s tie-down straps also demand careful attention. These straps secure your boat during transport, so they need to be sturdy and reliable.

    Lastly, remember to keep your trailer’s load evenly distributed. An unbalanced load can cause handling problems and put unnecessary strain on your trailer’s structure.

    Safety Gear

    Safety gear plays an indispensable role in ensuring your well-being, acting as your first line of defense against potential accidents or emergencies. Its importance escalates when you’re out on the open water, where help may not always be immediately available.

    Always check the safety equipment before making your purchase. This gear includes items like life jackets, flares, and fire extinguishers, which should all be inspected to make sure they are properly working.

    It’s important to ensure that all safety equipment is not only present but also in optimal working condition. Regular checks and maintenance are key to guaranteeing their reliability when you need them most.

    Prioritizing safety gear is an integral part of responsible boating and water sports participation.

    Walk Around 

    Once you have ensured that the engine, battery, and safety gear are in sailing condition, take a tour outside the boat. Check for any unwanted damage and make sure the hardware is all good to go. 

    Even if you didn’t find any significant scratches or hardware trouble, remember that this can affect the look of your boat, making the difference between a boat looking brand new or a pretty old one. 

    Follow The Nebraska Regulations

    Make sure you follow your state’s boat regulations. For Nebraska, all boats have to be registered with the Game & Parks Commission. Basically, this means that you’ll need to ask if the boat you are considering buying already has a certificate of number and follows all the proper regulations.

    It’s the law! So be sure to take care of that registration before hitting the water.

    Valley-Marine-Used-Boat

    Ask For a Lake Test

    Take a boat for a spin before you commit! Just like test driving a car, make sure you get a feel of the boat on the water and make sure it moves smoothly across the lakes.

    At Valley Marine’s dealership, you can ask for a test drive of any and all of our showroom boats to make sure you are choosing the right one. 

    Don’t Be Afraid To Ask Any Questions 

    This is your investment, your money, so you want to make sure you are fully aware of what you’re buying. Before making any decisions, ask for all the specs of the boat you’re interested in. This includes the length, weight, engine type, fuel usage, and any history the boat has. 

    Don’t hesitate to request trials or ask questions. Compare with other boats on the market and make sure you are buying the right boat for you. 

    Come to Valley Marine and Find the Perfect Used Boat

    Finding a reputable boat dealership is the most important part of buying a boat. Still wondering where that could be? If you live in Omaha or any part of the Midwest, come to Valley Marine!

    At Valley Marine, we are more than just a dealership; we are a community of boaters. We understand the thrill of cruising on the open water, the joy of weekend lake adventures, and the tranquility of relaxing days spent fishing or sunbathing on deck. We know because we’ve lived it.

    So, why spend any more time learning how to buy a used boat on your own? Allow us to share our expertise and passion with you. Our boat dealership has a full variety of used and new boats for you to test drive. Our team of water enthusiasts is ready to answer any questions you might have. 

    Don’t waste more time learning how to buy a used boat: At Vally Marine, we are boaters, just like you, so we understand the importance of getting the perfect boat for your lake adventures and relaxing days. 

    Valley-Marine-How-to-Buy-a-Used-Boat
    THIS IS VALLEY MARINE

    We have all heard that old saying… “You are the company you keep.” In everything we do at Valley Marine, our goal is to be the company you keep. That helpful friend you call with a problem. That place you drop by just to say hello and share a laugh. Our dealership is comprised of an incredible team of people, all boaters ourselves, with a common purpose- to give you, our customer, the very best on water. It’s simple really. The Golden Rule. Treat others the way you would like to be treated.

    Thank you for this opportunity to introduce ourselves. Please click on each member of our team to learn a little bit more about who we are and how we got here.

    Integrity. Boating. Company.

    BEST ON THE WATER

    Nebraska’s boating season is too short as it is. The last thing our customers need is to miss out on the precious season while their boat is in for repairs. At Valley Marine we understand this issue. That is why we have a complete service department comprised of six award-winning mechanics to help get you back out on the water as soon as possible.

    Valley Marine is pleased to offer on-site lake service testing for any boat that has been in our shop for repair. We the only dealer in Nebraska to offer this unique service to our customers. For the utmost in customer convenience, Valley Marine even offers a Mobile Service team that can make a “dock call” right to your boat.

    When Nebraska’s precious boating seasons comes to an end, just give us a call. We’ll come pick up your boat and store it inside one of our four spacious storage sheds. Now that’s service!

  • Boat Lift And Dock: Do You Need New Ones?

    Boat Lift And Dock: Do You Need New Ones?

    Do You Need a New Boat Lift And Dock?

    Do you need a new boat lift and dock? The weather becomes warmer each passing day, and we, water fanatics, just want to be out in the lake having a good time! So we gather our things and make our way to our beloved boat when we see it… an old and rusty dock and lift!

    If you’re a boat owner, you understand the importance of having a reliable dock and lift for your boat. Not only do they provide a secure place to store your boat, but they also ensure a smooth and hassle-free boating experience.

    But nothing lasts forever, and over time, docks and lifts can wear down and need to be replaced to maintain your boat’s security. 

    Why You Need a New Boat Lift And Dock (2)

    Why do you need a Dock and a Lift?

    First off, let’s talk about docks. Imagine your precious boat… parked in your driveway. Doesn’t quite fit the picture, right? That’s where a dock comes in. It’s essentially your boat’s parking spot, right there in the water. A great dock gives your boat a safe, secure place to rest when it’s not out braving the Nebraskan waters. It’s also the perfect launching pad for all your aquatic adventures.

    If a dock is a boat’s parking spot, a lift is the VIP valet service. A lift hoists your boat out of the water when it’s not in use, keeping it safe from the wear and tear of waves and weather. Plus, it makes maintenance and cleaning as easy as a summer breeze.

    If you’ve ever felt the thrill of skimming across the vast expanse of Lake McConaughy or the serene calm of a sunset sail on Branched Oak Lake, you know that here in Nebraska, boating isn’t just a hobby – it’s a way of life.

    A good dock and lift gives your boat the royal treatment it deserves, all while making your life easier. They protect your investment, prolong the life of your boat, and provide the convenience that leaves more time for what truly matters – enjoying our beautiful Nebraskan waters.

    Here are a few signs that indicate it’s time for you to invest in a new dock and lift

    Your Dock is Rotting

    “But it’s just a bit of rot,” you might think. “What’s the worst that could happen?” Well, imagine stepping onto your dock one sunny Nebraska morning, coffee in hand, ready for a day on the water – only to find yourself knee-deep in splinters because your dock has collapsed. Not exactly the start to the day you were hoping for, right?

    While a wooden dock may add aesthetic appeal, it’s also more susceptible to rot and decay. 

    Rot is a fungus that eats away at the wood fibers, causing them to become soft and spongy. And this fungus loves the damp, dark environment that dock lifts provide. This can cause significant damage to your dock and even make it unsafe to use. Soft spots and splintered wood are common signs of rot and should be addressed immediately.

    If you notice any signs of rot, replacing your dock is essential to prevent your boat from suffering any damage. 

    Your Dock is Unstable

    An unstable dock can shift or move unexpectedly, which can cause a person to slip and fall into the water, resulting in injuries or drowning. 

    A stable dock ensures a safe and secure platform for you and your passengers to board and unload your boat.

    Your Lift is Damaged

    A damaged lift can be a severe safety hazard, both to people and boats. Delaying repairs can lead to further damage and even cause your boat to sink. If you notice any damage, it’s essential to replace your lift as soon as possible.

    You can contact your Valley Marine in the Midwest area or your closest boat dealership for lifts and dock repairs. 

    Why You Need a New Boat Lift And Dock (3)

    Your Dock And Lift are Outdated

    If your dock and lift are not compatible with your new boat or have outdated features, it might be worth upgrading to keep up with your watercraft’s changing needs. Investing in a modern dock and lift can provide a safer, more efficient, and hassle-free docking experience.

    Let’s face it: there is nothing worse than missing out on all the lake fun because we need to wait for Dock and Lift repairs! It’s better to always check the condition of your equipment to make sure you don’t miss any adventure days!

    However, If you’re in the market for a new dock and lift, there are a few things you should keep in mind.

    Choose The Right Material.

    Docks and lifts are constructed using various materials such as wood, aluminum, plastic, and vinyl. Each material has its pros and cons; take the time to choose one that fits your budget, aesthetics, and durability needs. 

    For instance, wooden docks are beautiful, but they require high maintenance and are susceptible to rot and decay. Aluminum docks, on the other hand, are durable, low maintenance, and perfect for brackish water, but they are not everyone’s cup of tea. 

    Consider the Size of Your Boat

    Size matters – especially when it comes to your boat and its dock. You wouldn’t try to park a semi-truck in a compact car spot, would you? Similarly, your boat needs a dock and lifts that can handle its size, weight, and the number of passengers you plan to bring along for the ride.

    An ideal Dock and Lift will fully protect all areas of your boat.  You also need to think about the depth of the water, the tidal range, and your boat’s draft to choose a dock that can accommodate them.

    Why You Need a New Boat Lift And Dock (4)

    Choose a Boat Lift and Dock That is Easy to Maintain

    As we discussed, there are many materials you can use, some more high maintenance than others. It is totally up to you to decide what material to invest in; however, make sure it is the best of its kind for your budget needs and easy to maintain. 

    We aren’t talking just about choosing aluminum over wood but rather picking wisely the quality of the material and the best brand that will make your lifts and docks. 

    Choose a Boat Lift and Dock that is Durable

    The lifespan of your dock and lift depends on the materials they are made with and the frequency of maintenance. Ensure you choose one that is durable, longer-lasting, and built to withstand harsh weather conditions, water fluctuations, and environmental elements like algae and barnacles.

    The durability of your material will depend on the brand you choose and the weather conditions where you live. Make sure to do your research to pick the best materials for you.

    Why You Need a New Boat Lift And Dock

    Maintain the Quality of Your Boat

    A good dock is like a five-star hotel for your boat – a place where it can kick back, relax, and stay safe from the harsh elements. A quality lift, on the other hand, is like a personal trainer for your boat – keeping it fit and ready to take on the waves at a moment’s notice.

    Without these two heroes, your boat would be like a fish out of water – literally! It’d be exposed to the cruel whims of Mother Nature, and we all know she can be pretty ruthless at times. That’s why investing in a new dock and lift from Valley Marine is more than just a purchase – it’s a declaration of love for your boat.

    If you’re looking for a high-quality dock and lift, Rhino Docks is where to look. Rhino Docks are made from durable materials and are easy to maintain, so you know they can take whatever Mother Nature throws at them. They are also available in a variety of sizes to accommodate any boat. 

    Our team of experts is here to help you every step of the way. We’ll listen to your needs, answer your questions, and guide you toward the perfect dock for your boat. Call us; our expert team can help you choose the best Rhino dock for your needs.

    Remember, If you’re in the Omaha and Iowa area, you can visit us at Valley Marine. Valley Marine is a family-owned boat dealership that has served the Omaha boating community for years. 

    We offer a variety of boats, as well as docks and lifts solutions, and a knowledgeable staff ready to help you choose the right products for your needs.

    Visit Valley Marine today!

    THIS IS VALLEY MARINE

    We have all heard that old saying… “You are the company you keep.” In everything we do at Valley Marine, our goal is to be the company you keep. That helpful friend you call with a problem. That place you drop by just to say hello and share a laugh. Our dealership is comprised of an incredible team of people, all boaters ourselves, with a common purpose- to give you, our customer, the very best on water. It’s simple really. The Golden Rule. Treat others the way you would like to be treated.

    Thank you for this opportunity to introduce ourselves. Please click on each member of our team to learn a little bit more about who we are and how we got here.

    Integrity. Boating. Company.

    BEST ON THE WATER

    Nebraska’s boating season is too short as it is. The last thing our customers need is to miss out on the precious season while their boat is in for repairs. At Valley Marine we understand this issue. That is why we have a complete service department comprised of six award-winning mechanics to help get you back out on the water as soon as possible.

    Valley Marine is pleased to offer on-site lake service testing for any boat that has been in our shop for repair. We the only dealer in Nebraska to offer this unique service to our customers. For the utmost in customer convenience, Valley Marine even offers a Mobile Service team that can make a “dock call” right to your boat.

    When Nebraska’s precious boating seasons comes to an end, just give us a call. We’ll come pick up your boat and store it inside one of our four spacious storage sheds. Now that’s service!

  • The GoTo Boat Maintenance Checklist You Need For Summer 2023

    The GoTo Boat Maintenance Checklist You Need For Summer 2023

    Is it boat maintenance time again? Summer is in full swing, and it’s finally the perfect time and season to relax in your summer boat. However, before jumping right into the lake, we must ensure your boat is prepared and maintains its functionality. 

    Doing a pre-check-up can save you from potential inconveniences when on the water. From checking your engine’s performance to ensuring all safety features, our Valley Marine go-to list guarantees a smooth ride on the Midwest waters.

    Boat Checklist For Summer 2023

    The last thing we want is for our boat to be towed from the water on the first day of our summer adventures; this can ruin the rest of the season, and, believe us, most repair services and boat dealers in Nebraska are packed with work during these days, and it can take weeks for your watercraft to be ready. So save some time and money by checking your boat now and avoid any water problems that can stop your summer fun.

    Safety Equipment

    Checking for your safety equipment is the first thing you always want to do before starting the season and every time you step on your boat. Make sure that your kit  is in order and includes the following:  

    Life jackets

    Have the right type and size for each person on board. In addition to checking that you have enough life jackets, you’ll want to make sure that they’re in good condition and up-to-date.

    Flares

    Flares are essential for signaling for help when you need assistance, as they can be seen from far distances. If something goes wrong, carrying flares on your boat will provide peace of mind. Check for expiration dates or signs; you can also try one to ensure they light up. 

    First aid supplies kit

    A well-stocked first aid kit is also critical for any boating outing. Your kit should include basic supplies such as bandages, antiseptic, pain relievers, and any prescription medications that members of your party may need.

    Marine fire extinguisher

    A fire extinguisher could be the difference between a minor inconvenience and a major catastrophe. Don’t let the thought of a potential fire ruin your next adventure. After all, luxury is all about having the best safety measures.

    Not all boats require a fire extinguisher, so make sure to check your boat’s specifications to see if one is necessary.

    By taking these simple precautions, you can help ensure that your outings are safe and enjoyable for everyone on board.

    used boat engine hours (1)

    Engine And Fuel System 

    To keep that engine running smoothly and efficiently, it’s essential to perform regular checks on it throughout the year. Check your engine fluids, like oil, transmission fluid, brake fluid, and other lubricants. Without them, the engine components can be damaged and cost a pretty penny to fix.

    You can check all your engine fluid with a dipstick; most boats come with one; however, if you don´t have one, a good tip is to use a a plastic zip tie.

    Ensure your file system is not leaking or clogged with dirt or trash. Change any filters if needed and check all hoses for signs of wear or damage that can easily break them later down the line. 

    Electrical System

    Before you hit the water, make sure to give your electrical system a thorough inspection. Trust us; you don’t want to find yourself stranded in the middle of the ocean with a dead battery. Check that all of your connections are well-secured and not rotted; this will prevent any connection loss or intermittent running issues.

    It’s easy to check if your wiring and batteries are working correctly. All you need is a multimeter. This handy tool measures DC (amps), resistance (ohms), and voltage.

    Check all your lights, switches, and anything that might need a battery change or replacement piece. Everything must work properly in case of any unwanted situation.

    Walk around inspection 

    A thorough walk-around inspection of the boat can help detect any problems you might have missed at first glance. A final walk-around will help ensure your vessel is in good condition and ready for an enjoyable time in the open waters. During this inspection, you should check things like the string wheel, scratches or dings, any loose parts such as screws or bolts, and all other areas of concern.

    This inspection will also help you identify comfort and aesthetic issues, like seating damage or tear, any satins in the outer or inner part of the boat, or see if any detailing work is needed. 

    Know all the specs. 

    Knowing your boat’s specifications, like how many people it holds and what type of equipment is included, is essential for staying safe on the water.

    Researching and looking at your boat’s characteristics can give you an idea of your needs before sailing out.

    Moreover, knowing your boat’s specifications is essential for ensuring your safety and security. Familiarizing yourself with the vessel’s features, such as navigation and communication systems, anchor equipment, and safety gear, can help you respond better to emergencies and unexpected situations.

    Boat Maintenance Service

    If you need help with going through all the previous steps or simply don’t have the time to do it yourself, have a certified mechanic check your boat, especially if it has been sitting unused for more than a month.

    Professional inspections ensure that your craft is functioning correctly and has complete equipment.

    Contact our Service Center for quick boat repair and maintenance from our award-winning professionals. At Vally Marine, we are Ready to prepare your boat for extended use this summer season; we´ll make sure that any problems arise while you’re out enjoying yourself on the Omaha waters. 

    Enjoy Summer

    Don’t let any issues with your boat ruin your summer plans; we assure you that you will save money and time with this boat maintenance checklist. 

    Are you still searching for boats near Omaha this summer? Look no further than Valley Marine, where you’ll find many Omaha boats for sale. Our inventory includes various types of boats to fit your needs and budget. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to start your next adventure! Visit us at Valley Marine, and let us help you find the boat of your dreams.

    Boat-sale-near-me-Omaha-Valley-Marine (1)
    THIS IS VALLEY MARINE

    We have all heard that old saying… “You are the company you keep.” In everything we do at Valley Marine, our goal is to be the company you keep. That helpful friend you call with a problem. That place you drop by just to say hello and share a laugh. Our dealership is comprised of an incredible team of people, all boaters ourselves, with a common purpose- to give you, our customer, the very best on water. It’s simple really. The Golden Rule. Treat others the way you would like to be treated.

    Thank you for this opportunity to introduce ourselves. Please click on each member of our team to learn a little bit more about who we are and how we got here.

    Integrity. Boating. Company.

    BEST ON THE WATER

    Nebraska’s boating season is too short as it is. The last thing our customers need is to miss out on the precious season while their boat is in for repairs. At Valley Marine we understand this issue. That is why we have a complete service department comprised of six award-winning mechanics to help get you back out on the water as soon as possible.

    Valley Marine is pleased to offer on-site lake service testing for any boat that has been in our shop for repair. We the only dealer in Nebraska to offer this unique service to our customers. For the utmost in customer convenience, Valley Marine even offers a Mobile Service team that can make a “dock call” right to your boat.

    When Nebraska’s precious boating seasons comes to an end, just give us a call. We’ll come pick up your boat and store it inside one of our four spacious storage sheds. Now that’s service!

  • New Boaters Mistakes And How To Avoid Them

    New Boaters Mistakes And How To Avoid Them

    Are you a new boater looking to make the most of your time on the water? If so, it’s important to be aware of some of the most common mistakes that new boaters make so you are prepared for everything! 

    These types of mistakes can put you and your passengers at risk. There’s a lot to learn, and mistakes are easy.

    It’s crucial to familiarize yourself with some of the most prevalent errors that newcomers to boating often commit. By being well-prepared and knowledgeable about these potential pitfalls, you can ensure a smoother, safer, and more enjoyable time while navigating the open waters.

    Here are some of the most common mistakes that new boaters make

    Not Getting The Proper Training

    Boat safety shouldn’t be taken lightly! One of the biggest mistakes that new boaters make is not getting the proper training. 

    Just as you’d buckle up and learn the rules of the road before driving a car, it’s equally essential to enroll in a boating safety course before making a splash. This will teach you the basics of boating, including how to operate your boat safely, handle emergencies, and navigate the water.

    First aid boating

    Not Planning Ahead

    With a bot waiting for us, what is there to plan? We have the perfect weekend activity ready! Well, it is not that easy. Before you head out, it’s important to plan your route on every water trip and check the weather forecast to make sure you have all the necessary supplies. 

    It’s also a good idea to let someone know where you’re going, with whom, and when you expect to be back. Even if all the weather conditions are perfect, this will give you and everyone on board peace of mind. 

    Not Knowing the Rules of the Road

    The “Rules of the Road” in boating refer to a set of recognized guidelines designed to prevent collisions and ensure safe navigation on the water, from a lake to the open sea, each body of water has its own set of road rules; these are basically the dos and don´ts of sailing.  

    It’s essential to be aware of these rules before you head out on the water. You can find information about the laws of the road for your area at your local boating authority web page or office. The Game and Parks Committee establishes the boating regulations in Nebraska. 

    New Boaters Aren’t Prepared For Emergencies

    Nobody wants to hear this, but even if you have all the required training, you can put yourself and others in danger if you are not ready with the proper emergency equipment. 

    Always be prepared; this means having the proper and mandatory safety equipment on board, such as life jackets, flares, and a first-aid kit. 

    It’s also a good idea to know how to use your boat’s safety features, such as the fire extinguisher, how to put on a life jacket, or even having first aid training.

    Overloading Your Boat. 

    Another big mistake new boaters make is overloading it. This can make it difficult to control and can even be dangerous. The weight capacity indicates the maximum weight the boat can safely carry, including passengers, cargo, and fuel.

    This mistake can easily be fixed by knowing your boat’s weight capacity and doesn’t exceed it. This information is usually included in the owner’s manual or can be found online.

    Mistakes to avoid when boating

    New Boaters Speeding

    Speed limits are implemented for a reason: to ensure the safety of everyone on the water, and boats can reach high-speed limits very fast! Suddenly, maneuvers at high speeds can become unmanageable and difficult to control. 

    It is important to note that speed limits vary depending on the body of water, the time of the day, and other environmental factors. Generally, speeds are reduced in areas with limited passing zones, on windy or narrow channels, or where the water is shallow or congested with other boaters or water vessels.

    So always be mindful of the speed limit when you’re boating.

    Drinking And Boating

    This one might seem like common sense, but if you forgot, we are here to tell you: Drinking and boat is never safe. 

    Alcohol impairs your judgment and coordination, making it difficult to operate a boat safely. If you’re going to be drinking, it’s best to have a designated boater to take everybody home safely!

    Common New Boaters Mistakes And How To Avoid Them (2)

    Not Cleaning Up After Yourself

    We all love a clean and calm water lake, and this is only possible if we take care of it, not to mention that not cleaning up after oneself while boating can harm the environment. 

    Avoid leaving trash behind or damaging wildlife, and always be respectful of the environment you are sailing on. 

    Common New Boaters Mistakes And How To Avoid Them

    No New Boaters Mistakes

    As the captain of your vessel, it’s essential to communicate clearly with your passengers about safety protocols, their roles onboard, and what to expect during the trip. This will help ensure everyone’s safety and enjoyment while on the water.

    By avoiding all these new boaters’ mistakes and being thoughtful of your boating activities, you can help ensure that your time on the water is safe and enjoyable for everyone and that you are a responsible boater! If you are still looking for a boat to start your saline journey, you have come to the right place! Book a Test Drive at Valley Marine to find your perfect boat!


    Happy boating!

    THIS IS VALLEY MARINE

    We have all heard that old saying… “You are the company you keep.” In everything we do at Valley Marine, our goal is to be the company you keep. That helpful friend you call with a problem. That place you drop by just to say hello and share a laugh. Our dealership is comprised of an incredible team of people, all boaters ourselves, with a common purpose- to give you, our customer, the very best on water. It’s simple really. The Golden Rule. Treat others the way you would like to be treated.

    Thank you for this opportunity to introduce ourselves. Please click on each member of our team to learn a little bit more about who we are and how we got here.

    Integrity. Boating. Company.

    BEST ON THE WATER

    Nebraska’s boating season is too short as it is. The last thing our customers need is to miss out on the precious season while their boat is in for repairs. At Valley Marine we understand this issue. That is why we have a complete service department comprised of six award-winning mechanics to help get you back out on the water as soon as possible.

    Valley Marine is pleased to offer on-site lake service testing for any boat that has been in our shop for repair. We the only dealer in Nebraska to offer this unique service to our customers. For the utmost in customer convenience, Valley Marine even offers a Mobile Service team that can make a “dock call” right to your boat.

    When Nebraska’s precious boating seasons comes to an end, just give us a call. We’ll come pick up your boat and store it inside one of our four spacious storage sheds. Now that’s service!

  • Nebraska Lakes and Destinations for Boating Enthusiasts

    Nebraska Lakes and Destinations for Boating Enthusiasts

    Nebraska Lakes

    The Nebraska lakes and nearby destinations are still one of the most popular places to spend time for the Midwest folks, and for a good reason; here we give you the rundown of all you have to know for your visits this summer! Get ready to choose your next boating adventure. 

    Sure, Nebraska may not be the first state that comes to mind when you think of boating, but there are actually a number of great destinations for boating enthusiasts in the Cornhusker State. From lakes and rivers to reservoirs and state parks, Nebraska has something to offer everyone who loves to get out on the water.

    Nebraska is a hidden gem teeming with beautiful lakes and other stellar boating destinations. This summer, it’s time to uncover these aquatic treasures.

    Kayac Nebraska Lakes and Other Destinations for Boating Enthusiasts

    Lake McConaughy

    Lake McConaughy is the largest lake in Nebraska and one of the most popular boating destinations in the state. This lake is located in the southwest corner of Nebraska, 9 miles north of Ogallala, Nebraska, near U.S. Highway 26. 

    Boating

    Boating in Lake McConaughy is a delightful experience filled with adventure and tranquility. As Nebraska’s largest lake, this sprawling body of water offers over 30,000 surface acres for boating enthusiasts like you to explore, making it a favorite destination in the Nebraska, Colorado, and Kansas area.

    The lake is well-equipped for boaters, with multiple boat ramps available around the lake depending on water levels and with a private dock mooring fee starting at $200.

    Fishing is another favorite activity that boat enthusiast like to do at Lake McConaughy. Its waters are teeming with game fish species, including walleye, channel catfish, and Northern Pike.

    Other Activities

    Imagine waking up to the sunrise over the shimmering waters, spending your days fishing or boating, and then ending the evening with a cozy campfire under the star-filled sky.  You can do all that here.

    The lake offers a wide variety of recreational activities, including fishing, swimming, water skiing, and wakeboarding.

    Camping at Lake McConaughy is an experience to remember. There are more than 100 campsites scattered around the lake’s shoreline, ranging from primitive camping areas to modern sites with all amenities. 

    This lake also offers excellent hunting opportunities. It is open to hunting the Tuesday following Labor Day during designated hunting seasons for turkey, mule, and whitetail deer, waterfowl, and upland species that abound in the area.

    Lake McConaughy

    The Platte River

    The Platte River is a major river that flows through Nebraska. The river is a popular destination for boaters, especially during the summer months; it offers a variety of beautiful scenery, including rolling hills, forests, and prairies.

    The river has two water accesses. The first, located at the end of Lake Michigan Road, features a paved drive-in trailer access suitable for launching fishing boats, and the second access point, near the river mouth and next to Lakeshore’s south parking lot.

    Boating

    Boating on the Platte River is an immersive experience that invites adventure-seekers and nature lovers to explore the captivating landscapes of Nebraska.

    If you’re looking for an adrenaline rush, this is definitely to take your family boat this summer and have all kinds of fun activities with the little ones. 

    You can also book an airboat tour on the Platte River. Companies like River Life Airboat Tours offer thrilling rides across the river’s waters, giving passengers a unique perspective of the river and its surrounding ecosystems.

    The Platte River Nebraska

    Other Activities

    The Platte River offers an excellent flatwater paddling experience. You can rent a canoe or kayak and spend your day exploring the river’s gentle current and scenic views.

    For those who enjoy fishing, much of the South Platte River is considered Gold Medal Fishing Waters, known for producing trout longer than 14 inches.

    Tubing is another popular boating activity on the Platte River, especially during the hot summer months. Floating down the river on a tube provides a relaxing and fun way to cool off while enjoying the scenic views.

    The Platte River

    The Missouri River

    The Missouri River, often referred to as the “Big Muddy” due to its high silt content, is the longest river in North America, stretching over 2,341 miles. This River is not only a geographical marvel but also a significant part of American history. It served as the main artery for exploration, food, trade, and transportation for millions of people over thousands of years.

    Today, the Missouri River continues to be a vital waterway for commerce, agriculture, and recreation. For families in Nebraska, Missouri is a fun getaway adventure for everyone. 

    Boating

    Boating on the Missouri River offers a unique way to explore the longest river in North America. The river’s vast expanse and dynamic landscapes make it an ideal destination for a variety of activities.

    For those looking for a faster pace, motor boating is popular on the Missouri River. The river’s width and depth can accommodate most types of motorboats, making it suitable for cruising and watersports.

    There are several marinas along the Missouri River that offer services such as boat docks, concrete boat ramps, and fuel pumps.

    However, if you are looking for a more tranquil experience, this river is home to various fish species, including catfish, walleye, and bass, making it an excellent destination for a chill fishing experience. 

    The Missouri River destination in Nebraska

    Warning: Boaters should note that the Missouri River’s depth varies considerably, from a few inches to ten and twelve feet, with some holes up to forty feet. Channels are not well marked, and buoys are few and far between. Therefore, knowledge of the river and proper preparation are crucial for a safe boating experience.

    Other activities

    The Missouri National Recreational River offers a 100-mile stretch of free-flowing water that’s perfect for canoeing and kayaking, and any other fun activities for kids and adults alike. If you are looking for a place with the perfect fun and relaxing balance, this is where to go.

    The Niobrara River

    The Niobrara River is a scenic river that flows through Nebraska. This river is another popular destination for boaters, especially during the summer months. The river offers a variety of scenery, including bluffs, forests, and prairies.

    A significant portion of the Niobrara River is designated as a National Scenic River, offering 76 miles of free-flowing water that’s a haven for outdoor enthusiasts.

    Boat-sale-near-me-Omaha-Valley-Marine

    Boating

    If your primary interest is fishing, a small to medium-sized fishing boat would be ideal. Consider boats with live wells and trolling motors for the best fishing experience. Bass boats or pontoon boats equipped with fishing gear can be the perfect choice. 

    For thrill-seekers, personal watercraft like jet skis can provide a fun and exhilarating way to explore Niobrara Lake.

    Before heading out on the Niobrara River, it’s important to be aware of safety guidelines and local regulations. Water levels can fluctuate depending on the time of year and weather conditions, so it’s essential to plan accordingly and check current conditions.

    Other Activities

    The Niobrara River is especially renowned for canoeing and kayaking. The river’s speed ranges from 6 to 8 miles per hour, with an average depth of about two feet, which makes it a very friendly and safe place for beginners and experienced paddlers alike. 

    Boating on the Niobrara River offers more than just a fun water activity; it’s a journey through some of Nebraska’s most beautiful landscapes. From forested bluffs to wide grasslands, the river winds through a range of ecosystems, each with its unique charm. 

    While boating down the Niobrara River, you’ll likely spot a variety of wildlife, including deer, beavers, and numerous bird species.

    The Niobrara River

    Smith Falls State Park

    Smith Falls State Park, located in Nebraska, is a popular destination for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts. The park’s main attraction is Smith Falls, the highest waterfall in Nebraska.

    The park spans 250 acres along the Niobrara National Scenic River corridor. It offers a range of recreational activities, including hiking, camping, boating, fishing, and picnicking. 

    Boating

    Canoeing and kayaking are among the most popular activities at Smith Falls State Park. You won’t be able to see a lot of large or fast boats in the water since this park is designed for a more tranquil and low-paced experience to blend and connect with nature. 

    These are just a few of the many great boating destinations in Nebraska. If you’re looking for a place to get out on the water, Nebraska is a great option.

    Other activities

    The park boasts several hiking trails, including the Smith Falls Trail and the Jim McAllister Nature Trail. 

    There are also picnic sites available on the north side of the river, making it a great place to relax and enjoy a meal amidst nature.

    Smith Falls State Park

    Find the Perfect Boat for Your Perfect Nebraska Lakes Adventures

    If you are looking for the best Omaha Boats this summer to relax and spend time at any and all Nebraska destinations, Valley Marine has what you are looking for.

    Each new and used boat in our inventory is carefully selected to ensure it meets the highest standards of performance and durability. From Malibu to Axis, Cobalt, and South Bay, Valley Marine presents a collection that showcases the best in boating craftsmanship.

    At Valley Marine, we believe that the quality of service should match the joy of boating. Our expert staff is always ready to guide you through your purchase, ensuring that you find the perfect boat to fit your needs and lifestyle.

    summer Destinations for Boating Enthusiasts
    THIS IS VALLEY MARINE

    We have all heard that old saying… “You are the company you keep.” In everything we do at Valley Marine, our goal is to be the company you keep. That helpful friend you call with a problem. That place you drop by just to say hello and share a laugh. Our dealership is comprised of an incredible team of people, all boaters ourselves, with a common purpose- to give you, our customer, the very best on water. It’s simple really. The Golden Rule. Treat others the way you would like to be treated.

    Thank you for this opportunity to introduce ourselves. Please click on each member of our team to learn a little bit more about who we are and how we got here.

    Integrity. Boating. Company.

    BEST ON THE WATER

    Nebraska’s boating season is too short as it is. The last thing our customers need is to miss out on the precious season while their boat is in for repairs. At Valley Marine we understand this issue. That is why we have a complete service department comprised of six award-winning mechanics to help get you back out on the water as soon as possible.

    Valley Marine is pleased to offer on-site lake service testing for any boat that has been in our shop for repair. We the only dealer in Nebraska to offer this unique service to our customers. For the utmost in customer convenience, Valley Marine even offers a Mobile Service team that can make a “dock call” right to your boat.

    When Nebraska’s precious boating seasons comes to an end, just give us a call. We’ll come pick up your boat and store it inside one of our four spacious storage sheds. Now that’s service!