19 Sep

WINTERIZING/STORING YOUR BOAT

Well – here we are. Summer has come and gone – way too quickly! Cool nights are upon us, leaves are starting to change color and soon we (northerners!) will be shoveling and plowing snow!

With all of that ahead – you may be wondering what you need to do to winterize your Nauticraft boat.

First of all, if you live in a climate that is going to freeze, you will want to take your boat out of the water. Ice can cause damage to the pedal drive system and moving ice flows may also cause the hull to become misshapen.

You will then need to drain any water which may have entered the boat during the year and accumulated between the hulls. This step is especially critical for boats that are stored in freezing weather conditions.

Drain holes for both the Encore & the Sprite can be found at the rear of the boat on the keels. These drain plugs should be removed to allow any water (this should be very minimal) to drain out. MAKE SURE TO REPLACE THE DRAIN PLUGS AFTER THIS PROCESS!

Water in the Escapade should first be pumped out via the bilge pump. A sponge can then be used to clean out any excess water in the Escapade’s bilge.

If you have an electric boat, we suggest disconnecting the battery after charging it fully and then attaching a trickle charger to protect it from becoming too depleted. If storing the battery on a concrete floor, you may want to set it on a piece of wood. This will prevent it from getting too cold and reducing storage capacity.

We highly recommend storing your boat inside. If it is necessary to store it outside, you will want to cover it tightly to keep dirt, moisture and squirrels out. Make sure that the cover is heavy enough so it won’t rip and let water inside. You will also need a support to keep the cover well above the windshield to protect it from the weight of snow accumulation.

You might want to check out the videos on our website which further describe winterizing your pedal, pedal/electric or electric boat. We think that you will find these very helpful!

20 Mar

Pedaling the Potomac

Escapade on the Potomac

I bought my Escapade in the spring of 2001 as a 50th birthday present to myself. I named my pedal boat RiverSong, and now—as my 12th boating season begins—I still love it as much as ever.

I lease a slip near the Pentagon from April through October and pedal the Potomac within view of the Washington Monument and Lincoln and Jefferson Memorials. I usually take my first ride of the year while the cherry trees are still in bloom and my last as flocks of geese are migrating south overhead. Sometimes I pedal past the Kennedy Center and ride as far as Georgetown.

Because I have a demanding job in DC, I don’t get out on the river every day, but I try to take at least one evening ride and one weekend ride each week. People are always commenting on my boat, and tourists ask where they can rent one.  The cleverest remark from a passerby was: “Oh, a two-stroke engine!”

Like most boaters, I appreciate the beauty of the water and sky at least as much as what’s on shore. The scenery is perpetually changing, as is the play of sunlight on water. Occasionally I have trailered my boat to state parks and enjoyed pedaling on gorgeous lakes. As my husband Don likes to say, “The purpose of a boat is to take all the water up there… and put it back there.”

Sometimes Don comes along for a ride, but usually our dog is my only passenger. Our cairn terrier Boscoe accompanied me to Michigan when I bought the boat to give it his “paw of approval.” Boscoe passed away six years ago, but our young dog Skruffy enjoys boating even more than Boscoe did. He thinks we own the Potomac.  

 

Trish

Alexandria, VA