From the Boathouse: Kick off summer with a boat show


Two boat shows are entering my radar screen for the end of May, but now is the time to make plans to attend. Locally is the Dana Point Harbor Boat Show, and 90 or so miles to our east is the Lake Arrowhead Boat Show.

Dana Point's show will be held from May 29 to June 1 at the OC Sailing & Events Center & Public Docks. Power and sailboats will be on display with vendor booths for those looking for accessories. Go to for ticket prices, parking and shuttle information, and a list of the exhibitors.

Just a couple of hours away by car, not boat, the Lake Arrowhead show is scheduled from May 31 and June 1 at the Village. This show is free to the public and will feature primarily ski, trailerable and cruising boats, but no yachts or larger sailboats. A nice aspect of this show is the ability to demo the boats on the lake to help find the one that will fit your lifestyle. You can find driving directions, parking information and more at

Tip of the week is how to save fuel costs when cruising the waterways, whether in a harbor or out past the line of demarcation while looking for migrating whales in the Pacific Ocean. First, get the junk and extra weight off your boat, looking at what you have collected over the years in the lockers, bilge and cabinets. Any extra weight will make your boat's engines work harder and use more fuel.

Your boat's main engines should be regularly serviced, including any generators. Sailboats usually have only one main engine, but that engine can be an afterthought when preparing a ragboat for the season. You should carry extra primary fuel filters aboard, and I recommend that boat owners install gauges to help them know when it is time to change the filter.

I regularly hear or read about recreational boats that were delivered between harbors, and the delivery skipper will notice that the boat was very sluggish and plowing through the water at cruising rpms. Many times, a diver is sent into the water to inspect the hull and see if anything is wrapped on the running gear.

What the diver might discover is a hull covered thick in marine growth because the cleaning crew only cleaned from the waterline to just under the hull. Keep your boat's hull clean with regular bottom scrubbings by a professional company to alleviate the water resistance from marine growth. Resistance will make your engines work harder and use more fuel.

Finally, use common sense with the throttles and know your boat's cruising speed for the best fuel consumption per trip.

The weekend will cool down after the heat wave that moved through Southern California this week. Air temperatures along the coastline will be more comfortable, with thermometers reaching into the low 70s by Saturday. The skies will be clear and sunny, but expect patchy fog in the mornings. Nighttime temperatures will be in the high 50s to low 60s.

For boating on the ocean this weekend, the sea conditions will be great, with a small mixed set from the west and the south. The swells will be a 2-foot from the west with a 2-foot south with 1- to 2-foot wind waves for those cruising in the ocean.

Saturday's afternoon winds will be good for sailing at 5 to 10 knots, and the winds might shift from the east to the west. Sunday's winds will be westerlies that will reach 10 knots in the afternoon.

I have mixed emotions about rounding Point Conception this weekend because of the winds that might gust to 30 knots. The swells will be 3 to 5 feet west and a 2-foot south. However, like last weekend, the wind gusts will create steep faces on the swells. You need to know your boat and your abilities before rounding the point this weekend — doable, maybe.

As always, just keep an eye to the weather for any changes. Please be boat smart and boat safe. Lastly, please boat responsibly and look behind you before you turn the wheel at the helm.

Tune in to the No. 1 boating radio talk show in the nation, "Boathouse Radio Show," broadcasting live coast-to-coast on the CRN Digital Talk Radio syndicated network. See times at, and

Safe voyages!

MIKE WHITEHEAD is a boating columnist for the Daily Pilot. Send marine-related thoughts and story suggestions to or go to

Copyright © 2019, Daily Pilot
EDITION: California | U.S. & World