5 Tips for Planning Your First Family Lake Vacation
Every family needs a great vacation spot. Since 95% of all Americans live within an hour by car from a navigable body of water, why not find a quiet lake to call your own?
You’ll find lakes in every corner of the country. The United States has around 250 freshwater lakes that have a surface area of at least 10 square miles. The deepest lakes are found in Oregon, California, Nevada, Washington, and Idaho. The largest lakes are in the Great Lakes region spanning Michigan, Minnesota, Indiana, Illinois, Ohio, and Wisconsin. Residents of New York and Pennsylvania have access to Lake Erie and Lake Ontario.
Some of the country’s most scenic lakes are found in Utah and Arizona. The Lake of the Ozarks in Missouri is a popular destination for extended summer vacations. Florida, Georgia, and Alabama Lakes offer year-round fun in a temperate climate.
- Pick the Lake
The lake that you choose will determine a lot about how you pack for the trip. The size, depth, chop, and population level will all factor into your itinerary. If you plan on fishing like 48 million other Americans, you should source some old fashioned depth charts to find rock ledges and seaweed beds.
- Find a Cabin
Renting a cabin can be a big hassle depending on the lake your family visits. You could always simply pitch tents in the wilderness, but if your children aren’t quite ready for that yet then it might be better to find a rustic cabin to stay the week.
- Choose a Boat
There are so many different types of boat. If this is your first time being a boat owner, you can’t go wrong with a multi-species V hull. This is basically your all around watercraft for fishing in both calm and rough water, small and large lakes, and for just hanging out with family. You might also want to consider buying used, because deep paint scratch repair could cost $300-$3,000 depending on how severe the scratch is. It’s better not to worry about damaging a shiny new boat.
- Leave Non-Essential Electronics Behind
Studies show that unplugging from electronics can result in deeper and more meaningful interactions. Who better to share that with than your family? Still, since you are out on the water and there are some risks, make sure to keep emergency contact channels open in capacity.
One of the best parts of taking a family vacation is waking up super early, bringing your pillows and blankets to the car, and falling back asleep just as the wheels start to turn. Well, that’s fun for your children, but you actually have all of the responsibilities of driving there while towing a boat. No worries, though, it’s always worth it.
When you take a trip to a secluded lake without electronics, distractions, or any encumbrances, you will get a vacation that’s viscerally memorable for years to come. Cherish it.