The Best Winter Boating Activities
When the weather starts to cool, many boaters take this as a sign to dock their boat and begin the long wait for warmer months to come back around. While you probably can't expect to do much tubing or waterskiing, there are still plenty of great activities you can enjoy on or around the water to make the most of these winter months.
Take A Trip
Feeling the winter blues? There is no better way to escape the cold like rounding up a few good friends and heading for warmer waters. Here are some of our favorite winter boating destinations.
Not surprisingly, Florida is an excellent destination choice to take a break from winter. Whether you're looking to fish, snorkel, explore, or just work on your tan lines, Florida's 1,350 miles of coastline provide almost unlimited opportunities to extend your boating season.
The Gulf of Mexico's warm temperatures, clear water, and soft sand beaches are just what the doctor ordered to help remedy your winter weather blues. Anglers enjoy great year-round fishing opportunities in the Gulf as well as farther inland on the Tennessee River.
Saltwater and freshwater lovers alike are drawn to Texas year after year to enjoy hundreds of miles of coastline as well as over 150 lakes. All of this access to great water makes Texas a paradise for boaters who enjoy watersports, fishing, exploring new waters, and much more.
The Golden State's 840 miles of coastline feature amazing Pacific Coast sunsets, waterfront restaurants, intriguing nautical historical sights, great fishing and more. California enjoys warm weather year-round, making the coastline a popular oasis for boaters and anglers alike.
The winter season is prime time for some of the biggest and best boat shows across the country. These fun events are a great way to stay up to date on all things boating. Manufacturers and dealers from all over come to show off the latest products and services to help give you a jump on next year's boating season. Here are a few of our favorites.
Tampa Boat Show - September
Find your boating fun at Tampa's Largest and longest-running boat show. This boat show features hundreds of new boats from top brands as well top of the line gear to go with your new ride. The show also offers tons of great seminars and family-friendly attractions to take advantage of.
Atlanta Boat Show - January
The Atlanta Boat Show gives you a unique opportunity to shop and compare different brands and the latest models, from runabouts and family cruisers to fishing boats, ski boats, pontoons and much more. You'll also find over 100 accessory vendors offering the best prices on everything you need to outfit your new boat or update your current boat.
Chicago Boat, RV, and Sail Show - January
The Windy City's biggest marine and outdoor sales event features over 800,000 square feet of exhibits offering the best of the best in recreational boating. This show offers some of the nation's best opportunities to see and shop the best in powerboats, sailboats, RVs and all the gear to go with them.
Miami International Boat Show - February
Spread across the beautiful Miami Marine Stadium Park campus, this show has something for everyone. Offshore fishing boats, family cruisers, luxury motor and sailing yachts and performance boats are all on display. The show also offers sail-exclusive displays where sailing enthusiasts can browse the newest sailboats and catamarans.
Charlotte Mid-Atlantic Boat Show - February
For almost 50 years the Mid-Atlantic Boat Show has been the best place to get your family ready for the upcoming boating season. All of the area's best marine dealers are on-site to display brand new boat models. Explore everything from aluminum Jon boats to 30' luxury cruisers as well as some of the finest marine product and service companies in the region.
Maintenance and Upkeep
While it may not be the most fun or exciting way to spend your winter months, this is a great time to get a jump on prepping for next year's boating season. After a long and productive boating season, your boat is probably in need of a little tough love to make sure everything is in tip-top shape for next year. The last thing you want to do is neglect the little things during the slow season only to have these problems prevent you from enjoying the water when Spring comes around.
Winter is a great time to get a jump on repairing issues caused by everyday wear and tear. This is also a very practical time to check your safety gear, make any desired upgrades, improve your performance, and check that all boating licenses and registration are up to date so you're ready to hit the water again as soon as possible.
There are four essential reasons for installing a bimini top cover on your boat:
- Protection from the elements
- Protect your boat
- Quick and easy to change from open-air to shelter as needed
Preventing water collecting or pooling on your boat cover is best achieved by providing a proper boat cover support system or frame beneath the cover.
Boat cover support systems can be installed by a professional, come in kits ready to self-install, or can be created from scratch as a DIY project.