- Continue ReadingJanuary 29, 2021Is winter boating a thing? Yes, though not so much in our part of the world. In the coldest months, we northerners catch most of our fish through holes drilled in thick lake ice. Winter offers great fishing opportunities and snow-kissed fun for the dedicated boater with access to open water - and who's not afraid of the cold. Cold weather saps battery power. A battery loses 30 percent of its charge at freezing temperature (32F/0C). Keep your battery charged to avoid frustration when starting your motor. Also, watch for water in your fuel. Warm days followed by cold days cause condensation, which can contaminate your fuel. If you'll be using your boat over the winter, change your fuel/water separators and filters before cold weather sets in, as David Meeler of Yamaha Outboards advises. Adding a
- Continue ReadingMay 31, 2019
With the right boat and a wake surfboard, the surf’s up whenever you want! No one knows for sure who was the first brave soul to try surfing a boat's wake, but the sport has come a long way since the 1960s, with specially-designed boats and boards.
- Continue ReadingMay 17, 2019
Summer! It's finally time for long, sunny days, warm weather - and storms, which can cause more damage than just wet clothes and dampened spirits. Strong winds can whip up waves to dangerous heights, and lightning can be lethal.
- Continue ReadingSeptember 22, 2018Fact: you are 45 times more likely to lose your life to a rip current than a shark attack. We don't have sharks in our part of the world, but the dangerous currents of the Great Lakes are even more deadly. Twelve people perished in Lake Michigan just over Labor Day weekend, and two deaths occurred in Kenosha Harbor in the first week of September.
- Continue ReadingJune 29, 2018Save 10% on all watersports equipment through July 8, 2018! You haven't lived the lake life until you've been tubing. Getting wet, catching air, and wiping out - it's all part of the fun. Like any activity in and around water, safety must come first. Sadly, it's all too easy for carelessness to turn a day on the water into a tragedy.
- Continue ReadingJanuary 13, 2018
Spring is just 48 days away! We can't wait until it's warm enough to get the boat back in the water, and we're already thinking of ways to spend our boating time with our families. From maintenance chores to the thrill of wakeboarding, boat ownership offers lots of opportunities for kids of all ages to participate in the boating life.
- Continue ReadingMay 19, 2017
Memorial Day in the USA is the unofficial beginning of summer, kicking off the warm-weather party season. You don't need a big yacht to host a boat party, and you don't have to be Martha Stewart to throw a fun, flavorful, and safe party that your boating buddies will remember for a long time.
- Continue ReadingNovember 07, 2016
There's so much to love about autumn: the beautiful colors on the trees, the crisp air, the special blue of the November sky. There's no line at the boat launch, lots of space at the docks, and open water as far as the eye can see. It's nice to have the beach and water to oneself. With the end of peak boating season, marinas scale back services. You might not be able to refuel late in the day if the pumps close early, and you can't count on bait shops to stay open in the evening, either. Take enough bait, snacks, water, and supplies with you, and fill your gas tank before you depart. If you carry a spare gas can, fill it, too, and be sure to store it safely (not in the engine compartment or cabin). How are your lights? The days grow shorter, which means you might be getting back to the dock after dark. Replace burned-out bulbs when you find them. Cold temperatures shorten battery life, both in your boat's system and in flashlights, so carry extra batteries for your small electronics,
- Continue ReadingJune 24, 2016
With several high-profile boating tragedies in the news lately, we wonder: when something goes wrong, will you be ready? Thorough preparedness for marine disasters is beyond the scope of a blog post, so the Skipper suggests taking a boater safety course. The Boat US Foundation has free boating safety courses for each state, and the United States Coast Guard Auxiliary has a list of safe boating classes, both fee-based and free. Here are five points for preparedness. File a float plan. Make sure someone knows when you're leaving, where you're going, and when you intend to return. This form from the United States Coast Guard Auxiliary can be filled out online and printed,
- Continue ReadingMay 27, 2016
This is Day Six of National Safe Boating Week here in the USA, when the National Safe Boating Council highlights ways to stay safe on the water. Whether you're venturing out on the high seas or sticking close to shore, a few simple steps can help you get home in one safe piece. Everything shipshape? Before you leave the dock, check over your boat to make sure everything is working properly. The US Coast Guard Auxiliary has a safety checklist you can print out and keep handy. Wear it! As everyone should know, a boat is required by law to carry a personal flotation device for each passenger; PFD laws vary from state to state, many