Setting out on your first houseboat expedition can be exciting and nerve-wracking. Rest assured that you are perfectly capable of maneuvering and beaching your houseboat, provided you pay close attention to the instructions given to you before leaving the marina. Feel free to spend your day enjoying the lake, but keep in mind you’ll need to beach your houseboat before sunset. If you’ve never beached a houseboat before, here’s what you’ll need to do.
Find a Wide, Sandy Beach
Because there is no boat operation allowed at night, it’s important to locate a safe place to properly anchor (or stake) your houseboat. Look for a spot that is out of the main channel and high-traffic areas, where there are no underwater hazards. A nice wide, sandy beach with plenty of room for setting up camp is ideal. Your Forever Houseboat is equipped with stakes or anchors designed for the lake’s beaches. They are stored on the forward posts for easy retrieval. To speed up the beaching process, ropes are already tied to the aft (rear) cleat of your boat.
Prepare to Beach
Once you've found the right spot, prepare your houseboat for beaching by turning off the generator (to avoid sucking sand or matter into the cooling intake). Driving from the inside helm, you'll approach the shoreline with your motors running typically at 800 to 1000 RPMs. At this low speed, you'll then ease your houseboat up to the shoreline, watching for any underwater hazards or unexpected shallow areas.
After You’ve Beached, It’s Time to Secure
Keep your motors running at low speed until you have completely secured the houseboat. For your safety, it is important that the driver stays at the helm until the boat is secured. Make sure that passengers are not on or around the back deck of the boat when the motors are running and the boat is parked.
· Secure your houseboat by first throwing the ropes to the beach and then moving your stakes or anchors from the front of the houseboat to positions approximately 45 degrees from the boat (see illustration).
· Use the provided digging tools to either pound in your stakes or dig anchor holes. Make sure that all jet skis and other boats are parked outside of the ropes to avoid collision or injury.
· If it is windy, start from the side from which the wind is coming from. This will help keep the houseboat from moving out of place during tie down. If the wind pushed the houseboat out of position, during tie-down, the operator can steer the motors and apply a slight amount of throttle to straighten the boat.
You can ensure your ropes are tight by swinging the rear of your houseboat slightly toward the rope being tightened. Only turn the motors off after all ropes are secure! Keep in mind that stakes and anchors should be clearly visible, even at night. Detailed Instructions are located inside every houseboat, for your convenience. If you run into any issues out on the water, call the marina for help.
Ready to add “houseboat operator” to your resume? Now’s the time to book! Visit the Forever Houseboat website or give us a call at 1-800-255-5561.