Raising very young children on very small boats

PBO editor Jake Frith introduced his son Daniel to boating quite young, in a fairly wet boat. Here’s how…

Mahogany bobour 55 year old mahogany LH Walker canoe on an oak clapboard canoe is beautiful and draws admiring comments wherever we go, but because he doesn’t get used to it as often as he should, his lands get dry up and it leaks like a sieve.

Being kept next to the river in the local dinghy park and easy to launch, yet safe and very stable, this boat was often the first choice for short adventures.

When Daniel was a baby, we kept him away from Mahogany bobon the wet floor keeping it on your lap or in a car seat propped up in the bow.

Little babies are a breeze in good weather, even on open boats, as they seem to sleep most of the time with the gentle slapping motion and tend to stay where they are placed.

We found that was usually enough to keep him happy if he was suitably warm and dry, plus the right hat, sunscreen and buoyancy aid.

The article continues below…

Twelve years ago, my husband and I bought our first boat – a Sadler 29 – before the children and even…


1. Take the time to take the time It is easy for the skipper to get caught up in the load to…

When he was a toddler, I created a simple marine “playpen” for him at the bow out of a piece of PVC advertising banner and some snap grommets.

The boat has its own front infill raised area and I simply cordoned that off. This gave him an area of ​​his own where lint and bottoms could be kept away from the usually damp rest of the boat.

It also kept him well clear of adults’ elbows when performing things like rowing or starting outboard motors. Needless to say, at age eight, he now rows and steers the boat himself.


James, Daniel and Mahogany bob

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This feature first appeared in the June 2022 edition of Practical boat owner. For more articles like this, including DIY, money-saving tips, great boat projects, expert advice and ways to improve your boat’s performance, subscribe to Britain’s best-selling sailing magazine.

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Earnest A. Martinez