Yachting safely in winter
During the winter months we are used to leaving our yacht in the hands of experts for proper storage and maintenance. But, what if you want to cruise in winter also?
Careful storage, supplemented by all related professional winterizing services is the best solution to ensure that your boat gets through the cold season unscathed.
If you cannot stay away from the water, however, you can opt for an equally good solution: do not let your yacht go into hibernation, but use it in colder waters also, provided that the yacht and the passengers are properly equipped, constantly monitoring weather conditions and forecasts to prevent being taken by surprise by bad weather (this practice is always true in any case, even in the warm season).
In Italy we are lucky because, thanks to the mild climate, all coastal areas are suitable for yachting activities even during the winter season. So you can enjoy bays and inlets in optimal conditions, with deserted routes, fewer people, and more harbors available. In fact, the winter season is great time to enjoy beautiful landscapes in peace, without the stress of the typical summer period.
How to prepare for winter yachting?
Avoiding extreme cold is crucial, especially while cruising, because recovering heat during a boat trip is very complicated. Therefore, wear technical clothing, waterproof and breathable, specifically designed for winter navigation.
First, protect the extremities, hands, feet and head: choose comfortable shoes and gloves that allow you to fully move and operate. Never forget that you must not only protect yourself, but you must also control the yacht.
To heat the below deck areas it is advisable to use a diesel powered heating system. These systems, unlike electric elements for example, heat the yacht evenly. Given that they do not need electrical power, they can even run while cruising with no negative effects.
Moisture and condensation are the most difficult enemy to defeat. They form as a result of the clash between the internal heat of the boat and the external cold. To prevent their formation, take advantage of the sunniest and warmest hours of the day to ventilate the boat as much as possible.
We always recommend not leaving wet clothes or the like below deck at night given that they naturally release their moisture to the environment.
Prepare a good schedule for transportation
Transporting a boat requires careful preparation: we talked about this topic in our article How to prepare your boat for transport.