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View Full Version : Water depth - how low will you run?


C36
10-13-2006, 07:28 PM
What is the minimum water depth you will pull a skier in? I know what the draft spec is on our boat, but when pulling a wakeboarder at lower speed isn't driving gear pushed even lower? :confused:

This summer past July and August were pretty dry in Ontario (Canada) and the lake level was lower then in recent memory. Now there are sections of the lake that we used to run outboards through as teenagers (~4 to 5 feet) but with our "new-to-us" Mastercraft I wanted to be safe so I kept it in at least ten feet of water when pulling skier or wakeboarder.

Some of this was covered (sort of) in the recent thread "depthfinder, why?" But I thought it would be best to start a new thread (sorry if this has been covered before - but my searches came up with zero. :(

http://www.tmcowners.com/teamtalk/showthread.php?t=11356&highlight=depth+finder

ntidsl
10-13-2006, 07:55 PM
I've fallen or dropped many times and just stood up so I guess I'd have to say 3-4 foot

Andyg
10-13-2006, 08:16 PM
The lake I ski on is no deeper than 6 ft in any one spot. It averages between 3 and 5 feet. We usually don't ski in the areas that are around 3 ft. Also the bottom is muck so I don't worry about hitting anything. I have been skiing on this lake for six years now and have yet to damage a prop on it.

TMCNo1
10-13-2006, 08:29 PM
Really any depth over 4' and never in the parking lot of a Wal-Mart!

milkmania
10-13-2006, 09:19 PM
Really any depth over 4' and never in the parking lot of a Wal-Mart!
Don't never say never!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


here ya go8p

TMCNo1
10-13-2006, 09:23 PM
here ya go8p


You right! Ya got me! My hands are behind my chair, waiting for the police to come and handcuff me as we speak. LOL

MarkP
10-13-2006, 09:25 PM
You right! Ya got me!
Like a dam steel trap

erkoehler
10-13-2006, 09:26 PM
I'd go 1.5-2 feet but that wasn't an option.

The slalom course is in SHALLOW water to keep the wallies out.

Laurel_Lake_Skier
10-13-2006, 09:57 PM
I know what the draft spec is on our boat, but when pulling a wakeboarder at lower speed isn't driving gear pushed even lower?
The boat won't go much lower than when the it is sitting at rest. An IO or outboard will drop the back end on take off more than the inboard.

As an example, the location for the midwest regional barefoot tournament the last couple of summers has water on one end that is no more than 3 feet deep. On takeoff, the propwash churns up some nasty looking goo but I don't remember any problems hitting the bottom.

Laurel_Lake_Skier
10-13-2006, 10:13 PM
Here's a photo of some shallow water fun borrowed from Barefoot Central.

JDK
10-13-2006, 10:35 PM
What is the minimum water depth you will pull a skier in? I know what the draft spec is on our boat,


I'm pretty sure that the draft spec. given by M/C is while the boat is at rest. On my boat, the platform is a couple of inches out of the water when at rest. When I'm skiing at speed, I can almost see the tips of the speedo pick-ups.
I've had my boat in 2 ft. of water many times and not turned up the bottom (always in areas where I KNOW there's nothing but mud).

6ballsisall
10-13-2006, 10:38 PM
Ya'll have bigger nads than I!! You wont catch me driving my MC thru 3' water at speed nor will you catch me skiing in water that shallow. Thats just beggin to take a wrong fall and break your neck. No way now how. I like 5' as a MINIMUM.

rodltg2
10-13-2006, 11:05 PM
Ya'll have bigger nads than I!! You wont catch me driving my MC thru 3' water at speed nor will you catch me skiing in water that shallow. Thats just beggin to take a wrong fall and break your neck. No way now how. I like 5' as a MINIMUM.


you may not like many ski lakes then. alot are less than 5'

Leroy
10-13-2006, 11:22 PM
Really under about 7-8ft I slow to idle unless I really know the area. Even then I don't like skiing or going full speed there.

ridehype4life
10-13-2006, 11:47 PM
We wakeboard in 4-5 ft, but when you go up in the air 6-7 ft, your gonna fall from the sky hard, and the bottom of the lake doesn't feel too good on your head. Also the wake turns to crap for boarding in anything under 5 feet or so of water. Pretty much gets flat and loses its entire shape when there's no water there to displace.

C36
10-14-2006, 01:41 AM
The boat won't go much lower than when the it is sitting at rest. An IO or outboard will drop the back end on take off more than the inboard...

Nice example barefoot picture and I hear what you are saying, but when I look at this picture it sure looks like the swim platform (and stern of the boat) are below the water line - lower than when the boat is at rest, no? Granted this picture is taken at about 12 mph - not exactly a hole shot start.

C36
10-14-2006, 01:47 AM
I'm pretty sure that the draft spec. given by M/C is while the boat is at rest.
That is my understanding as well - just curious what happens to the driving gear (prop and rudder) in the process of getting up to sking speed - does it dip down before it comes up?

On my boat, the platform is a couple of inches out of the water when at rest. When I'm skiing at speed, I can almost see the tips of the speedo pick-ups...
Sounds similar to ours at sking speed but see the picture below. Swim platform appears to be below the water line at slower speed, no?

NeilM
10-14-2006, 02:18 AM
Ya'll have bigger nads than I!! You wont catch me driving my MC thru 3' water at speed nor will you catch me skiing in water that shallow. Thats just beggin to take a wrong fall and break your neck. No way now how. I like 5' as a MINIMUM.

I'm with you.. I guess it's all in what you get used to. By the end of this summer at Mabel Lake, if the bottom came closer than 100', I thought I was in shallow water.

123src
10-14-2006, 04:35 AM
We'll ski in 4 feet of water, but I perfer 5.....

kpgotgame
10-14-2006, 04:54 AM
We wakeboard in as few as 3ft.
The Nottawasaga river in Wasaga beach - Wakestock was held here a couple of years back - has some spots that are at the most 3ft. These shallow spots are typically were your buddies will wipe out.
There is also a wakeboard school on the river - They use a 2005 23ft Session and use the entire river for lessons. However they did mention to us to use caution in certain areas.

When we are at home we typically ride in 6-10ft.

TMCNo1
10-14-2006, 09:00 AM
here ya go8p
Milk, how do you move a Quote from one thread to another like you did here? I have only been able to do it with a link, rather than the actual quote.
The reason I am asking it here, rather than by PM/e-mail/phone, is other inquiring minds may want to know by seeing it here.

TMCNo1
10-14-2006, 09:05 AM
Like a dam steel trap

Or the jailhouse door slamming shut, don't I get booked first ossifer!:D

SteveO
10-14-2006, 09:07 AM
My sphincter tightens below 4. We have a few spots at the club that are in the low 4 high 3 areas.

TMCNo1
10-14-2006, 10:04 AM
I once read a article in WaterSki Magazine that discussed water depths and the relationship to turbulance generated by the prop as it forced water to bounce of the bottom and would surface in the area of the skiers/boarders behind a boat. IIRC the depth determined should be no less that 5' to 6' to prevent turbulance off the bottom at most all line lengths.

C36
10-14-2006, 02:13 PM
...the depth determined should be no less that 5' to 6' to prevent turbulance off the bottom ...

This would make sense to me.

We dock our boat is in 3'-4' of water. The bottom is pretty solid covered with about 4" of silt. Once the boat was pulled out for the winter, I noticed what appeared to be fish nests (silt cleared away in a circle to the reveal the hard lake bottom) on the bottom just under where the running gear (prop and rudder) were parked. I then realized it was probably the prop wash (not the fish) clearing the silt away when the prop was shifted into gear to pull away from the dock (always parked bow out into the lake).

Even though the fish do appear to like to hang out under the boat. ;)

C36
10-14-2006, 02:21 PM
One more picture of my perception of the depth of prop. More of a diagram I pulled together this morning. As others have noted (and thanks for all of the comments :) ). My guess is that skiing speed is shallowest (shown on the right), mooring next with a little more draft (shown on the left), and finally slower wakeboarding speed with the most draft (shown in the middle).

TMCNo1
10-14-2006, 02:47 PM
This would make sense to me.

We dock our boat is in 3'-4' of water. The bottom is pretty solid covered with about 4" of silt. Once the boat was pulled out for the winter, I noticed what appeared to be fish nests (silt cleared away in a circle to the reveal the hard lake bottom) on the bottom just under where the running gear (prop and rudder) were parked. I then realized it was probably the prop wash (not the fish) clearing the silt away when the prop was shifted into gear to pull away from the dock (always parked bow out into the lake).

Even though the fish do appear to like to hang out under the boat. ;)

What you describe is the same effect powerloading has on short launch ramps or at ramps when the water level is low. The prop blows lake bottom away and creates a crater on the bottom.

Waterski-Marcoisland
10-14-2006, 08:04 PM
My BF200 will get up and go in about 2 ft of water. However wouldnt recomend anything less than 3ft.

Workin' 4 Toys
10-14-2006, 10:55 PM
If it wasn't for 3' depths, we might never get out....

h2oskiluvr
10-15-2006, 12:22 AM
Minimum 5 feet in my opinion. I went out the front in three feet and ended up flat on my back underwater. It shocked me how hard I hit the bottom. If I had hit differently I could have easily broke my neck. The water was way down but the ski course looked too good to pass up. It just isn't worth it at all!

JEREMY79
10-15-2006, 10:37 AM
Dam some of you guys scare me. I like 20+ guess that is the joy of having Cumberland,Dale Hollow and a few others close

Larryp
10-15-2006, 04:18 PM
i HAVE USED THE POWER OF THE PROP TO CRAWL OUT OF MUD BEFORE.

milkmania
10-15-2006, 04:37 PM
Milk, how do you move a Quote from one thread to another like you did here? I have only been able to do it with a link, rather than the actual quote.
The reason I am asking it here, rather than by PM/e-mail/phone, is other inquiring minds may want to know by seeing it here.
I opened TWO browsers...... situated the one I wanted to quote..... highlighted & hit the copy button, came back to the other browser that was were I wanted to add the quote, and pasted it.

kinda the same thing to quote multiple people in one post.

the threads don't actually have anything to do with it, it's all about using the clipboard on your computer.;)

JohnnyB
10-15-2006, 06:43 PM
Really depends on what the bottom of the lake is. If its mud/sand/gravel, then the shallower depths would be OK to me (3-5ft). If you're talking rocks, stumps, etc then i'd want to be in over 6'

MasterCrafting
10-15-2006, 08:26 PM
If its up to speed already i'll do 1.5 to 2 but i wont start skiers in water that shallow...there are a few chanels between islands to "secret" ski areas that we ride though...i've fallen in there before...no big deal...

Leroy
10-15-2006, 08:34 PM
Think about diving in the 3' shallow end of the swimming pool and while being thrown into a "dive" during a ski fall isn't likely the results could be pretty nasty.

Workin' 4 Toys
10-16-2006, 07:53 AM
Think about diving in the 3' shallow end of the swimming pool and while being thrown into a "dive" during a ski fall isn't likely the results could be pretty nasty.
I hear that, but if it wasn't for a 3' depth, we would probably wouldn't get out there much.
And I probably wouldn't dive into it if it were a pool... :o

#47of100TeamMC
10-16-2006, 09:30 AM
If I may... All you guys that ski in 3-4' of water are Nuckin-Futz!!!

Davo
10-16-2006, 10:01 AM
LOL...we don't have a choice. Every other lake in Florida is 3'-5' deep in at least some sections. It helps to be familair with the lake and where those shallow sections are located. I'll ski and board through it, but I am more concerned about the people that come out who aren't familair and I try to educate them on where not to fall.

It helps also to have a CG approved vest as you won't penetrate as deep upon impact. Although, if you fall the right way it might not matter. For instance, I did a dive on a fall off the wakeskate and hit bottom in like 4'-5' feet of water!

6ballsisall
10-16-2006, 10:03 AM
If I may... All you guys that ski in 3-4' of water are Nuckin-Futz!!!

TRU DAT!!!!!!!!

beef
10-16-2006, 10:21 AM
Our slalom course lies in a section that is 3-4' deep. The bottom is soft mud, so I'm not all that worried. In fact, the boat lane is at least a foot deeper from running through all the time. Given the choice, I'll take the shallow water as opposed to not skiing the buoys.

Slalom? no problem. Kite tubing? I'll opt for at least 6' there! :)

TMCNo1
10-16-2006, 10:35 AM
I opened TWO browsers...... situated the one I wanted to quote..... highlighted & hit the copy button, came back to the other browser that was were I wanted to add the quote, and pasted it.

kinda the same thing to quote multiple people in one post.

the threads don't actually have anything to do with it, it's all about using the clipboard on your computer.;)

Thanks, I'll try it soon!

TMCNo1
10-16-2006, 10:41 AM
In any case, a depth finder in a boat comes in real handy to survey the area at idle speed prior to skiing, if the depth is questionable.

east tx skier
10-16-2006, 10:45 AM
We have pulled a skier around a turn island where the depth was 3'. The bottom was soft and muddy and we could see the trail from where the prop wash was stirring up the mud. The end where we started and dropped was 5'. I wouldn't have liked doing a hole shot in 3' of water given how much bottom I stirred up just making a turn in it.

3event
10-16-2006, 10:53 AM
In order to have a standing "instructor" to help launch kids this summer, we were taking off from our lake's sandbar on a PS197 at slow small tyke speeds. Depth about 3.5-4'. Boat threw a lot of muck at the instructor but there is no debris to hit. It made me a bit nervous at first but no problems.

When we drive across the shallow end of our lake wakeboarding, it's impressive how the bow drops and the transom comes up. A wally wouldn't notice it but you can sure tell if you're watching for it. From behind the boat , the wake shape changes pretty quick. Less than 4', not sure avg. A fair trail of cloudy mud behind , but all is good and I had my running gear check out great this year after 5 seasons.

RobertT
10-16-2006, 12:14 PM
There is one spot on my lake that is about 4-5' deep. I attempted a back flip dismount of sorts on my airchair, and ended up sticking the foil into the mud with my head under water. I almost pulled the plug and undid the belt but I had a few seconds of air and just wiggled for a few seconds and floated it back up.

Scary.

I wont foil in shallow water anymore.

88 PS190
10-16-2006, 01:15 PM
Foilers should never ride shallower than 8 feet, and there is really no need to either, you can handle some rougher water just fine.

At college our ski team's course is in less than 3 feet of water, probably 1.5 or 2 in areas, sometimes when you are getting up you cannot get the tip more than an inch above water and far in front of you because you are essentially sitting on your fin its so shallow.

But the water skis better, I personally think deep water courses are harder to ski in.

Jorski
10-16-2006, 01:43 PM
kpgotgame,

I used to slalom and barefoot up there semi regularly with a buddy who had a cottage nearby on the bay.

It was pretty cool skiing under the bridge and by the restaurant/bar (name escapes me). We used to do beach starts for barefooting at the shore near the park - start straight out, then turn hard right!

Nice place.

Skidriver
04-23-2009, 10:59 PM
Curious about what is a safe water depth for skiing? Often times we make runs in 4' of water which makes some of my passengers a bit nervous. What is your minimum?

C36
04-23-2009, 11:04 PM
Skidriver:

Click here (http://www.tmcowners.com/teamtalk/showthread.php?t=12377) to view a thread that might be of interest to you.

Curious about what is a safe water depth for skiing? Often times we make runs in 4' of water which makes some of my passengers a bit nervous. What is your minimum?

Craig
04-23-2009, 11:11 PM
I have skied in water that was probably about 3', or a bit under but it had thick mud under it. If it was a solid bottom 3'-4' would make me sort of nervous.

A lot of ski lakes are only designed to have a depth of about 6' through the slalom course, and usually a bit deeper at the end of the jump ramp.

At our old club lake we had a problem with water level if it was dry, on a particular year the boat was run until the prop hit the pvc connecting the slalom course. We have since moved lakes and installed higher intelligence.

h2oskifreak
04-24-2009, 08:53 PM
I skied a flooded cow pasture in Ogden UT for a tournement a bunch of years ago. It was 3-5 feet deep in the various places. No need for pick up boats, just walk on back. It was so weird to see all these previous skiers walking back toward the dock. Kinda looked like zombies across the water, only carrying skis. A few fell and their skies were sticking out about 2-3 feet of the water, crazy sight.

trickskier
04-24-2009, 09:07 PM
If the boat makes it through without hitting bottom.....................So will I................:rolleyes:

03 35th Anniversary
04-24-2009, 09:53 PM
If the boat makes it through without hitting bottom.....................So will I................:rolleyes:

Thats got to be the quote of the day!!!

suedv
04-25-2009, 12:43 PM
I skied a flooded cow pasture in Ogden UT for a tournement a bunch of years ago. It was 3-5 feet deep in the various places. No need for pick up boats, just walk on back. It was so weird to see all these previous skiers walking back toward the dock. Kinda looked like zombies across the water, only carrying skis. A few fell and their skies were sticking out about 2-3 feet of the water, crazy sight.

I hope there weren't fresh cow pies in that flooded field.

Gamble
04-25-2009, 12:56 PM
I hope there weren't fresh cow pies in that flooded field.

I was wonderin' the same thing!!!!!!!

TMCNo1
04-25-2009, 01:44 PM
Apparently it doesn't take much water to board, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rYGivjkDVoc&feature=related

TX.X-30 fan
04-25-2009, 03:19 PM
Need more water to produce wake for a sport that is not slalom. :D

h2oskifreak
04-25-2009, 06:07 PM
I was wonderin' the same thing!!!!!!!
I don't think so. These guys had been skiing it for years. Soder can tell you a thing or two about feces in water (sorry Soder) Western Regionals were held about 20+ years ago at Newberry Springs CA and one of the practice lakes was lined with chicken poo somewhere in the 70's +/- and it still smelled decades later. I guess that proves all ideas arn't always good ones. I skied it though. I traveled 1,000 miles to ski in the regionals and I wanted to practice, what can I say I'm not above most anything.

Skidriver
04-25-2009, 10:02 PM
Skidriver:

Click here (http://www.tmcowners.com/teamtalk/showthread.php?t=12377) to view a thread that might be of interest to you.
C36, thanks for the link to the survey. Looks like a safe water depth is a personal preference versus a technical fact to avoid injury.

shepherd
04-27-2009, 04:30 PM
For some slalom purists, the depth of water affects how their ski rides. They claim that shallow water has a noticeably different feel.

RexDog1
04-27-2009, 04:51 PM
"Find x > 3 such that

ln(x) < x^(0.1)"

:rolleyes:

X2M
04-27-2009, 06:32 PM
"Find x > 3 such that

ln(x) < x^(0.1)"



show off.... :rolleyes:

funk
04-28-2009, 03:24 PM
I don't think so. These guys had been skiing it for years. Soder can tell you a thing or two about feces in water (sorry Soder) Western Regionals were held about 20+ years ago at Newberry Springs CA and one of the practice lakes was lined with chicken poo somewhere in the 70's +/- and it still smelled decades later. I guess that proves all ideas arn't always good ones. I skied it though. I traveled 1,000 miles to ski in the regionals and I wanted to practice, what can I say I'm not above most anything.

Soder?? That's awesome. Kinda like soder pop or baking soder? :D:D:D

TX.X-30 fan
04-28-2009, 03:34 PM
Soder?? That's awesome. Kinda like soder pop or baking soder? :D:D:D



I don't get it?? :D

funk
04-28-2009, 04:45 PM
In California it is "Sodar". In midwest or south, it is "Soder". Not that funny I guess, just got a laugh out of me!

lazypiper
05-01-2009, 07:59 PM
This was our first set of the year on Sunday. It's a very very soft mud bottom. This about as low as the tide gets before we leave.

ProTour X9
05-01-2009, 09:04 PM
"Find x > 3 such that

ln(x) < x^(0.1)"

:rolleyes:

Where do you get the natural logarithm and the .1 from?? (Advanced Algebra II here):confused::D

Jesus_Freak
05-04-2009, 01:01 PM
:D"Find x > 3 such that

ln(x) < x^(0.1)"

:rolleyes:

Any x between 3 and 3.0595 satisfies this. Is there a purpose for this? :D

Sodar
05-04-2009, 01:19 PM
I don't think so. These guys had been skiing it for years. Soder can tell you a thing or two about feces in water (sorry Soder) Western Regionals were held about 20+ years ago at Newberry Springs CA and one of the practice lakes was lined with chicken poo somewhere in the 70's +/- and it still smelled decades later. I guess that proves all ideas arn't always good ones. I skied it though. I traveled 1,000 miles to ski in the regionals and I wanted to practice, what can I say I'm not above most anything.

I do not know of any lakes in Newberry that are like this. I have skiied them all and none of the have sh!t floating in them. We have had a place out there since 1987 and I have yet to see what you are describing. Congrats on skiing in sh!t water, though! That is quite a die-hard move!

P.S.- My name is Sodar.

Jerseydave
05-04-2009, 04:25 PM
This was our first set of the year on Sunday. It's a very very soft mud bottom. This about as low as the tide gets before we leave.
Attached Images


It's a Mastercraft, not a swamp buggy! ;) J/K