Think boating season is over just because the weather won’t allow a cruise on your favourite waterway? Think again! Winter is the perfect opportunity to make big plans for your watercraft so you’re ready to hit the waves when warmer weather comes around.
Here are some ideas that’ll help you enjoy your boat even when you can’t use it.
Attend boat shows/exhibitions
Judging by the popularity of boat shows put on across the country during the winter, there are lots of people thinking about boating even when lakes and rivers are frozen solid. A few of these shows include:
Toronto International Boat Show, January 17-26, 2020 (Toronto, Ont.)
Vancouver International Boat Show, February 5-9, 2020 (Vancouver and Granville Island, BC)
Montreal Boat Show, February 6-9, 2020 (Montreal, QC)
Halifax International Boat Show, February 6-9, 2020 (Halifax, NS)
Calgary Boat and Outdoors Show, February 6-9, 2020 (Calgary, AB)
Spring Fishing and Boat Show, February 14-17, 2020 (Mississauga, Ont.)
Ottawa Boat Show, February 20-23, 2020 (Ottawa, Ont.)
London Boat, Fishing and Outdoor Show, February 21-23, 2020 (London, Ont.)
Victoria Boat and Fishing Show, February 21-23, 2020 (Victoria, BC)
Hamilton Boat Show & Sale, February 28-March 1, 2020 (Hamilton, Ont.)
Mid-Canada Boat Show & Sale, March 5-8, 2020 (Winnipeg, MB)
Quebec City Outdoor Hunting, Fishing & Camping Show, March 12-15, 2020 (Quebec City, QC.)
Edmonton Boat and Sportsmen’s Show, March 12-15, 2020 (Edmonton, AB)
BC Boat and Sportsman Show, March 6-8, 2020 (Abbotsford, BC)
Research new accessories and equipment
Even if you can’t make it to a boat show, visit their website and take a look at the exhibitors’ list to get ideas on trends, sales and new types of accessories and equipment. Are your water skis a little ragged? Do you need to repair upholstery in your boat? Looking for a new tube for the kids or grandkids? Now is the time to read up on what’s available and scope out pricing.
Stock up and replace safety equipment
When the summer sun is shining and the lake is beckoning, you won’t want to worry about whether your first aid kid is fully stocked or if you need to replace a tattered life jacket. Take stock in the winter of all your safety supplies, make a list and work your way through them well in advance of your first boating day. Get boating safety tips here.
Upgrade your training
Have you always meant to take a boating safety, marine navigation, boat engine maintenance or other training course? Many organizations offer training straight through the winter months, so you can feel like you’re spending time with your watercraft even when the snow is falling. Whether it’s online or in-person, a course will help you be a better boat owner and give you more ways to enjoy your hobby. Here’s a list of training courses across Canada.
Don’t spend the winter pining for your precious boat. Take action to ensure you’ll have the best boating season ever in 2020!