Boat Colorado: Boating Safely in Colorado

Boat Colorado: Boating Safely in Colorado


Boat Colorado: Boating Safely in Colorado is the official student manual developed for the Colorado State Parks. The student manual introduces you to Colorado laws governing boating and provides general information about safe vessel operation on Colorado waterways.

Colorado’s Rocky Mountain lakes and reservoirs offer many boating adventures, including windsurfing, boating, and waterskiing. Blue Mesa Reservoir is Colorado’s largest body of water at 29 miles long, and has many arms that lead boaters into secluded canyons for some quiet moments out on the water.

Use this manual to familiarize yourself with steps to make all your boating outings safe and enjoyable. Remember, safety on Colorado waterways is the responsibility of all boaters.

Topics include:

  • Vessel Basics
  • Navigation Rules
  • Nighttime Navigation
  • Emergencies
  • Personal Watercraft (PWCs)
  • Colorado Boating Laws and Regulations
  • Required Equipment
  • Skiing
  • And much more…

Boater Education

You may have heard that you need a boating license to operate your boat, but what you really need is a boaters safety course. Whether or not your state requires education, it can reduce boating accidents and injuries on the water. Boaters can keep themselves and their passengers safe by learning about responsible boat operation, etiquette, and the rules of the waterways.

Persons 14 or 15 years of age who wish to operate a motorboat are required to successfully complete an in-person proctored exam. Many other boaters also take the Colorado-approved boat education course to save money on their boat or PWC insurance or to go boating in other states that require boat education.