Boating Checklist: Essentials for a Day on the Water
Those summer months are fast approaching which means more days spent in the sun and endless boat cruises with family and friends. Easily, these may be the best memories you make all year. Therefore, it’s best to stay prepared for any situation and we have just the list of 10 items you need on board to have a summer to remember.
These items are essential anytime you choose to take the boat out, hence why it is listed as number one. Make sure you have Coast Guard mandated gear, as well as other safety items you feel is necessary to have on board. Accidents happen and it's better to be prepared for them!
Packing food and beverage items specific to the outing you are going on is a great way to not overpack the vessel. For safety reasons make sure there is always enough water on board because dehydration is common especially on those hot summer days. Packing fruit with a bunch of vitamin c such as oranges is great for quick energy consumption. Finally, to maintain comfort on the boat all day long make sure to have plenty of sunscreen on board!
Often your propeller can get wrapped up with seaweed and debris causing the boat to come to a stand-still. Having a knife on board to cut away some of these items is helpful in avoiding having to call a tow boat.
Having extra lines on board can come in handy in unexpected situations. You could need to hook up to a buddy, dock your boat on a pier at a waterfront restaurant, or pull out the water toys and need to attach them to the boat. It’s better to have an extra line than none!
Stocking the vessel with basic cleaning supplies is helpful to clean up spills made from beverages, fish blood, or food sauces. Keep a boat rag, boat soap, and a scrub brush aboard. Whether you need to do a quick clean-up on the water or are finishing up your day by cleaning the boat off at the dock. Make sure to not let these spills dry as it becomes more difficult to clean and can damage your vinyl seat cushions.
Not everyone chooses to have an anchor and rode on their vessel but you may find yourself needing it more than you think. In case of emergencies, it's good to have the option to anchor your boat so it cannot drift into the busy channel or further away from shore.
Always be sure to have your boat registration, your boater education card, and personal identification cards such as your license onboard. It can vary by state as to what is required to have on hand, so be sure to look into what is specific to your state.
Nothing is worse than when your cell phone or bluetooth speaker dies during a fun boating excursion. Bring the appropriate charger cords to plug into your boat to eliminate this issue. In case of emergencies you will want to have a charged cell phone to call for help.
Things happen on the water and being able to fix the problem temporarily before you can make it back to the dock eliminates a headache. A flashlight, Philips screwdriver, duct tape, electrical tape, an adjustable wrench, and a portable jumper pack are all items that can aid in fixing a variety of situations that could arise. All of which you can purchase from your local hardware store.
You need a device to record all the fun you will be having and to take pictures to document those moments forever. In saying that, one of the beautiful aspects of boating is that you are able to unplug from the world and enjoy nature. Make sure to take pictures but also remember to stow away your cell phone and enjoy those moments without the worry of notifications on your device.
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