Re Frans Jacobsen's letter in Tuesday's Daily Courier (Request to area youth from elderly lady)... you seem to be greatly misinformed with a lot about wake surfing (or as you referred, boat surfing).
To start, these new "obese vessels," which are on average only maybe three to five feet longer then the boats you grew up waterskiing and bare footing behind, are equipped with an in-board motor.
This means the propeller is in the middle of the boat, not off the back end, so the rider is not only dozens of feet away from the prop, but also behind the flow of water, which makes it nearly impossible to make contact with the propeller, and "having your head detached from your body."
The boat also travels at a low rate of speed, usually around 10 m.p.h., and does large circles as it improves the wave for the rider. It actually makes it harder to navigate other boats waves as this disrupts the wave for the rider, so I'm not sure what makes you think everyone would be doing circles around other boats.
You must be mistaking our boats with
sea-doos or tubing.
Riders can use a tow rope to ease their way out to the necessary distance and then drop it or throw it back into the boat. This reduces the risk of what happened to your granddaughter (whose fingers tangled in the tow line), which can happen with nearly every water sport, including your beloved waterskiing. I'm sorry to inform you, but accidents happen, often in sports.
As for you "being sure almost none have
licences," again you are misinformed. Our schools offer the opportunity to get your boating licence in physical education classes in both Grade 11 or Grade 12.
It is also easily available online through several certified online sites as well as though Service Canada. It is no different as our roads, where people drive without a
licence and ignore road signs and laws.
Our boats do not "dump" fuel into our lakes as we "tip sideways." That is absolutely ridiculous as is the suggestion that it's one of the reasons why our fish population is down.
These boats are equipped with the same fuel systems as the cars on our roads. Your car doesn't "dump" fuel on the road when you make a sharp corner, does it?
The drop in fish population has nothing to do these new boats or wake surfing, but perhaps it has to do with the rise in human population we've had in the Okanagan or maybe just nature working its course.
And I would like to apologize on behalf of Mother Nature for eroding your beach front. But please note, this is just a natural occurrence, the whim of Mother Nature; boaters are not targeting you.
Within a four-year period, let alone the
37 you say you've lived on our lake front, you may notice some erosion on your beach and some damage to your pier, just like every other lake front owner in our valley.
I'm not sure why today's elderly find enjoyment on bashing everything us youth do and blame us or the environmental problems.
Much of that environmental problems are due to the neglect and lack of knowledge by your generation.
It is arrogant to say youth have no respect for the environment, when your generation had a lack of care for our planet that greatly surpasses today's neglect.
I'm sure when you were out waterskiing and bare footing in your youth, you didn't appreciate the elderly looking down on you because you chose to do new and innovative things, such as waterskiing would have been.
I would nicely ask you to refrain from lashing out on the youth of today for something that is done by entire families, including the elderly.
And before you write a letter about the potential dangers, both to human and environment, I suggest you do just a little research as it may help fight your ridiculous debate about how we should stop with this extremely fun, easy and safe sport in exchange for your beloved waterskiing.
But I don't think any amount of research could possibly make your side of the fight seem reasonable, let alone educated or informed.
Moving away from the lakefront has been available for years and is a safe alternative.