What is COVID-19’s effect on local boating?

The Log’s Kevin Davis shares his perspective of how the Coronavirus pandemic has affected boating activities in Long Beach.

SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA—It’s been about six weeks since California went into a strict lockdown in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Regattas and fishing charters have been canceled. Recreational boating and fishing activities in San Diego have been put on hold. Officials in Sacramento, meanwhile, have been limiting fishing activities in certain parts of the state, in an attempt to restrict the spread of the Coronavirus.

But what has been the true effect of COVID-19 on recreational boating? The Log’s editor, Parimal M. Rohit, spoke with his colleague (and liveaboard boater) to gather his thoughts on how the state’s Stay at Home/Safer at Home order has affected recreational boating in Long Beach. Mr. Davis also shares a few thoughts on how he’s getting by while living aboard his boat.

Parimal M. Rohit: We are, as everyone has been saying for almost two months now, in unprecedented times. What have you been witnessing at your marina?

Kevin Davis: For the most part the marina is fairly silent. Lots less foot traffic on shore. However, I’m still seeing a number of boaters down to either look in on their boat, do some cleaning or maintenance, take their boat out, or just relax and enjoy the serenity.

PMR: What’s been the general, overall effect of COVID-19 on boating?

KD: A lot less socializing and social activities.

PMR: Are more or less people visiting their boats?

KD: Less. However, the recent weather has also had a hand in this – as the weather warms up more people will come out.

PMR: Give us some perspective of being a liveaboard during quarantine. Are there challenges you have to face, that you otherwise wouldn’t have to deal with in “normal” times, now that you are limited (for the most part) to your slip area?

KD: Not much difference than any other quarantine home. You do begin to feel cabin fever – literally. Boat quarters get smaller when you spend more time on board. I’m lucky. I’m still working – working remotely throughout the week, so my time is occupied. My wife, the dogs and the cat get a lot of my attention. I’m getting more walks as well. I seem to have an on growing honey do list, not to mention I find more things I need to do to the boat. We’ve gotten a little more creative with our cooking. We also seem to go through a bottle of wine quicker.

PMR: Continuing from the last question, living on a boat, you are in tight quarters. How do you go about social distancing, both aboard your boat and at your dock?

KD: Living on a boat we kind of have the best situation for the current social distancing situation. For the most part people on the dock keep their distance. We also wear our masks when we are out and about.

PMR: What are some techniques you’ve been implementing to stay healthy while being aboard your boat?

KD: I try to keep a normal Monday-to-Friday routine – taking the dogs for a walk helps. I typically work out in the morning. I do a HIIT [high intensity interval training] routine along with resistance bands. I have a place on the shore out of the way that I use. However, eating right has been more of a challenge. Can you say SNACK? Boredom kicks in, so does our sweet tooth. We’re working to get our hands around this.

PMR: What’s the first thing you’ll do once the Stay at Home/Safer at Home orders are lifted?

KD: Have a drink at our local watering hole, eat out, listen to some live music.

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