Using a houseboat for a vacation can be a ton of fun but there are some important things that you should know before ever leaving the dock. One of those important things is what to do with your houseboat overnight.
There are a few steps that you need to take to tie up, anchor, or beach your houseboat. Those are:
- Find the right spot
- Prepare your boat
- Tie up your houseboat
Each of these are vital to the success of your trip!
Houseboats have been a great way to take your family or friends on a vacation for years. In today’s world, it has become quite difficult to spend some time with your family members because of the busy schedules we all seem to have. It is quite disturbing that people don’t have very much time for their families these days.
If you are someone who wants to take a break from daily life then buying or renting a houseboat is a great option.
This also acts as a great way for the family to get together. You can rent a houseboat for a week or more depending on your requirements and spend the entire time on the water having some fun. However, it is important to have as much knowledge as possible before ever setting off for the trip. This also includes knowledge about how to tie a houseboat in a cove.
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How to tie the houseboat?
If you are planning for a long trip, it is obvious that you’ll have to anchor or beach the houseboat at night to ensure a comfortable stay. While in the water, finding a good spot is not that easy but it is important to tie up the houseboat in a good cove at night.
To make sure that you do it right, follow the given steps.
1. Find the Right Spot
One of the basic requirements during the trip is to keep another vessel ready which you can use to go around the nearby areas. Although you usually won’t go too far away from an area that you know if the lake or river you are renting a houseboat on is new to you then having this other vessel will be incredibly important!
It will help you find the perfect spot to spend the night on your boat and will save you tons of time and hassle as well.
Around evening time, you can take out your smaller vessel and begin to look for a good place that is nearby. The spot to anchor or tie up your houseboat must not be too shallow as it is important that the bottom of the boat doesn’t get damaged. This is why it is important to start looking for a good place before dark as it can be difficult to see the depth once the sun goes down.
You can also just look for coves or areas where other houseboats are at so that way you know that it is safe.
2. Prepare your houseboat for beaching
Once you’ve found the perfect spot for your houseboat, you must ensure that your houseboat is ready for being beached. Turn off the generator so that it doesn’t suck in unnecessary sand. The next step is to ensure that the speed of the houseboat is slow enough to not drive you far up the beach but fast enough to get you partway on.
You will also want to make sure that the place you are about to tie up at is safe from any underwater hazards. Plants or an excess number of debris can be dangerous for the boat. The slow speed will also be helpful in avoiding the sucking of unnecessary stuff into the system.
3. Tie up the houseboat
When the boat is being beached, make sure that no one is on the back deck. After safely getting the houseboat in the desired area, now is time to secure the boat to keep it from drifting away while you are asleep. The currents should never be trusted so you should always secure your houseboat when leaving it on the water unsupervised.
Start by throwing ropes to the beach. Each of these ropes should be at an angle away from the boat and far enough inland that the tide won’t cover the anchors. You will want to dig holes in the sand to secure the anchors and then bury them. Once that is done you will then need to tighten the ropes on the boat to where they are not hanging in the water.
Most houseboats will have 4 anchor lines but larger ones may have more than that.
You must make sure that the ropes on board are good quality and strong ropes. These can turn out to be your lifesaver if the wind kicks up while you are sleeping.
To ensure the boat is far enough on the beach use the motors and some pressure when first arriving. You should also check the ropes periodically to make sure that they stay tight and do not allow the houseboat to turn sideways or anything like that.
Factors to be Considered
There are a few things that must be taken care of when you are tying up your houseboat on a beach. With these tips, your houseboat will be completely secure and you don’t have to worry about getting stuck or drifting into the open water while you are asleep.
- One of the most important factors to consider is the fluctuating level of the water. It is common that the water levels will fluctuate with the tide but these levels can greatly affect the boat when it is beached. So make sure that you keep an eye on the water level from time to time so that you can make the necessary changes if the water level drops or goes up.
- While beaching the boat, it is important that no one is on the back deck when the beaching is in process. It is important as the procedure can be affected by the weight of the people. It can also turn out to be risky for the passengers too as the motors would be running during the procedure.
- The direction of the wind can also turn out to be a hurdle that you have to jump over. Strong winds can turn out to be a big problem while beaching your boat and even after you are beached. If you are afraid that the wind may make the ropes come loose, then you can use the motor to resist the effect of the winds. Also, while tying the ropes, make sure that you start in the direction of the wind.
- The angle matters a lot too. It is important that you tie all the ropes at the correct angle which is 45 degrees from the boat. While tying the ropes, make the anchor holes as deep as you can to ensure a strong grip. Also, carry some additional ropes for an emergency. It is better to be prepared than to regret later.
- When it comes to the anchors, you must dig the hole 2 to 3 feet deep. You can also cover it up with sand to give it some additional protection and grip Doing so will also help in preventing the anchor from working itself loose.
We hope that you found this article helpful. All these tips are sure to help you out in some way or another when you are beaching your houseboat in a cove or virtually anywhere else. By following these tips and tricks, you can ensure that your houseboat stays safe even in the worst weather conditions.
Don’t forget to always carry some extra equipment such as ropes, anchors, shovels, etc.that could help you out if you lose or damage some of the original items.
Now that you know more about how to tie up your houseboat in a cove you can be much more confident when you hit the water!