Okay, so you've been bitten. Bitten by the powerboating bug. Now what.
Well, now comes the hard part. How much do you want to be involved in the whole powerboating world.
And which direction should you go to get there. Will you just jump in, full bore, damned the torpedos and all that.
Or will you slow your roll and get your sea legs first prior to going all in.
And by that we mean will you simply get a small used boat. One that you feel is manageable, both on and off the water.
Smaller boats, just as those in the medium as well as larger size categories, all have their pro's and con's. Smaller varieties are trailerable, which is great if you have not only a vehicle to tow them with but a place to properly store them when you're not able to be out on the water.
Which leads to the question , are you prepared to tow a boat. Meaning do you have access to a legitimate tow vehicle of some sort. And by legitimate we're referring to the vehicle's tow rating. The vehicle's ability to safely tow a certain amount of weight, boat and trailer combined.
Which all needs to be calculated into your what size equation. Because in this situation size truly does matter.
Then comes the issue nof storing your boat. Do you have room at home, perhaps on the side of your house, in the backyard, perhaps even in the driveway. The ability to be able to keep your boat at home afford you the ability to perform any maintenance tasks on your own time.
And as you will come to learn, maintenance will be your greatest assurance of many a successful boating adventure. So having easy access will be a huge advantage.
That's not to say that you won't be able to locate a storage facility near your home but there's nothing like being able to perform regular tasks at your leisure as opposed to driving back and forth to the storage facility to perform any needed maintenance.
That's if you're even able to perform any maintenance work at the storage facility you choose. It's not always guaranteed so please check the rules prior to choosing a facility.
One of the biggest must-do's is to flush you power unit after each and every outing. And this is not always allowed at each facility. So again, prior to signing on the dotted line, obtain a copy of the rules and reg's. You'll be glad you did.
The larger the boat, while a much more pleasant experience on the water, can increase the challenges. Not only will a larger tow vehicle be required but fuel costs as well as storage fees will increase in proportion.
That's when you might consider renting a slip at a local Marina. Which in and of itself isn't always the easiest thing to do. Especially in San Diego. Many Marinas have waiting lists. Folks in need of boat slips, but unable to find any available.
For more info on Marinas throughout So. Cal. be sure to check out So.Cal.Marinas.com for boat loads of information on all the benefits of being able to keep your boat in a slip at your local marina.
However, if you are fortunate enough to find as well as afford one, this can be a great way to go. Not only will this eliminate the whole towing situation but it negates the entire storage issue as well.
And the simplicity of just showing up with your carry-on's, stopping at the fuel dock (if you haven't already refueled during the week while you were there performing your routine maintenance) and possibly the bait barge if you've got fishing on your mind, and heading out from there can be a huge stress reliever.
Speaking of stress relief, if you are fortunate enough to nab a boat slip you'll begin to get the distinct feeling that quite a few of your neighbors rarely, if ever, seem to leave the dock. And you would be right in thinking so. Yes, there are entire communities of so called Condos On The Water.
These boats most often start off in the upper 20's to lower 30ft. range on up to who knows where. Think of these as motorhomes camping on the water. Folks that much prefer to be spending their time dockside, near the water as opposed to up in the mountains amongst the trees.
You can't miss 'em, especially in the warmer months. Once the BBQ's and the cold beverages get flowin', the party is on. Which leads to a great time had by all. Including, more often than not, the new neighbors.And the question of why aren't there any available boat slips will quickly be answered.
As you can see, simply admitting you've been bitten is only the beginning. Weigh all of your options and please do your due diligence. One bit of advice. More often than not we find new boat owners wish they woul've stepped it up a notch or two with their original purchase.
So please keep that in mind prior to making your decision. But whichever way you choose to go, we hope you have many a successful outing out on the water.
We hope this Article assisted you in getting even closer to realizing all of your on the water dreams.