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Name:   copperline - Email Member Reply
Subject:   Saturday Night Lights
Date:   4/23/2016 11:27:33 PM   IP ADDRESS: 68.184.69.193

A really great Saturday night to be on the water tonight.  Nothing but clear skies and starlight, so I decided to take the pontoon over to see The Landing at Parker Creek…   I’d had supper and was just interested in how many people were going there.   I usually make it a practice to not get out on the water on weekend nights… so it’s been a while.   I guess that’s why this grabbed my attention so. 

Here’s what struck me:   there are many, many new lights along the shores on these weekend nights.   They are multi-colored, some go on and off at random… it’s a changing assortment of light spots of various intensity, usually just  at water level, expanding all across the horizon in some areas.        Against that background of flashing spot lights a boater has to be able to pick out (and track) that distinctive red/green bow light, or some combination of red/green & white stern light …..of any on-coming boat, and the other boater has to do the same.

  New businesses are opening up for the season, inviting customers to come by water.    More homes are on the lake every year, bringing lots of new boaters.   As traffic increases in the summer, I just expect the same increase in less cautious, less experienced boaters.   And fast boats are fun to drive at night, I’ve done it many times. 

Back to my nighttime ride….  Approaching Parker Creek,  a waverunner zipped up my right side from behind.   I didn’t see him until he was 30 feet away… then he disappeared into the dark.   No lights. OK, I get it.  It’s Saturday night. 

On to the Landing, then turned around and headed home following another pontoon that was heading in the same direction.      After a few minutes, I was over-taking him and moved to his right, closest to the shore. I was watching for boats against the shoreline lights between Smith Marina & the Scrushy house at that point.  And, wow, there are lots of people home over there tonight.      

When I got parallel with the slower pontoon,  my wife noticed a fast moving red light cutting across the bow of both of us.   I throttled back, if I hadn’t we would have come dangerously close.   It was a bass boat, low, fast and with none too bright running lights.

Now, my bass boat friend may have had the same problem as me.  He was looking for my navigation lights against a really brightly lit Landing…which was several hundred yards away by this point.  He may not have been able to make out the bow lights of both pontoons against those shore lights…. until he was up close.   And he was covering ground pretty quickly, with less margin for error than he probably thought he had.

Nobody was hurt, he probably didn’t even know I had to throttle back, everybody was fine.   But it struck me then that we may be overdue for a bad boat accident over on this side of the lake.    After all, there are lots of new homes, tighter navigation choke points, the same old blind corners and more zippy wave-runners. There are lake-side businesses inviting more night-time boating than ever before.     We all need to be really careful.      There isn’t any law enforcement with regard to night boating to speak of, there can’t be.   The Water Patrol deputies are down to a real minimum because of repeated state budget cuts, we pretty much have to take care of ourselves out here at night….

Just my thoughts, and I don’t know what to do about so much “light pollution” on the shorelines… but I am wondering if we need to redesign navigation lights to work better, to be more contrasty and attention grabbing.     Of course, going slower isn’t a bad idea either.





Name:   mariah1 - Email Member Reply
Subject:   Saturday Night Lights
Date:   4/24/2016 9:14:43 AM   IP ADDRESS: 70.193.107.202

I have wondered about the same thing for years. 





Name:   lakngulf - Email Member Reply
Subject:   Saturday Night Lights
Date:   4/24/2016 4:26:45 PM   IP ADDRESS: 96.95.54.43

I am with you on not getting out at night so much.  Parker Creek used to be pretty calm at night, except for that occasional speed boat.  Also, there are some late, late afternoon jet skiers.

What did you find at the Landing?





Name:   copperline - Email Member Reply
Subject:   Saturday Night Lights
Date:   4/24/2016 4:41:07 PM   IP ADDRESS: 68.184.69.193

I just took a look from the water and didn't get out.   Looked like a couple of dozen customers.





Name:   Mack - Email Member Reply
Subject:   Saturday Night Lights
Date:   4/24/2016 9:23:20 PM   IP ADDRESS: 74.240.81.15

If you ever stepped on a snake on your walk to the water at night ?? Lights might help. But not you? Really?

Many folks bought their property as relatively undeveloped and, therefore, unlighted. Since then, residents have developed and expanded, making the property more in tune to modern ideas. Or else they sold it to others who were more in tune with modern ideas. Lights..

Live with it sir. Ain't gonna change.

And, if you cannot safely navigate the area you describe, fair weather or foul, day or night, park that toon or better yet sell it. Sir.





Name:   prkcrk50 - Email Member Reply
Subject:   Saturday Night Lights
Date:   4/24/2016 9:39:55 PM   IP ADDRESS: 99.12.124.141

If your depth perception is bad you may not want to get out on the water after dark.  Luckily for me, I can nearly see The Landing from my place so I am looking forward to some late nights there this summer.





Name:   Falcon635 - Email Member Reply
Subject:   Saturday Night Lights
Date:   4/25/2016 12:10:25 AM   IP ADDRESS: 68.184.69.74

Where are these new businesses on the lake?  Would like to see a new restaurant on the North part of the lake.





Name:   Spot Remover - Email Member Reply
Subject:   Saturday Night Lights
Date:   4/25/2016 8:30:22 AM   IP ADDRESS: 24.181.40.185

There are restrictions on lighting on the water. Probably just a matter of time before the G and Fish people crack down.

They probably would have aready if we had enough LEO's.





Name:   copperline - Email Member Reply
Subject:   Saturday Night Lights
Date:   4/25/2016 10:10:10 AM   IP ADDRESS: 68.184.69.193

No need to be rude, son.   You just need to see what a spinning prop can do to the human body to understand what I was getting at.





Name:   Smitty - Email Member Reply
Subject:   Saturday Night Lights
Date:   4/25/2016 1:44:34 PM   IP ADDRESS: 38.110.61.14

Good post Copper.  It is sometimes very hard for me to see the red/green lights at night.  I slow down in response....but still hard. 





Name:   Spot Remover - Email Member Reply
Subject:   Saturday Night Lights
Date:   4/25/2016 3:01:24 PM   IP ADDRESS: 24.181.40.185

Mack, you have a lot to learn. Lots!





Name:   Mack - Email Member Reply
Subject:   Saturday Night Lights
Date:   4/25/2016 6:32:37 PM   IP ADDRESS: 74.240.81.95

Spot, hope you have a nice life. You obviously have vastly more world experience than I, to make such a statement. At 69 years I will continue to learn, but I now take very deliberate care in selecting a teacher.

Cheers. Have a great Summer.





Name:   Lifer - Email Member Reply
Subject:   Saturday Night Lights
Date:   4/26/2016 8:53:13 AM   IP ADDRESS: 71.12.192.168

If color blindness had been better understood back in the day we would most likely be using blue/yellow.







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