Well we're back from holidays!! OK so Nat and I got away with our friends Andrew and Ali Mathie, and Andrew's younger brother Tim. We decided months ago a house boat might be fun so set about tracking own some prices. We settled on Clyde River House Boats and I can honest say we weren't disappointed.
To save having to drive all the way from Wollongong to Batemans Bay on the day we picked the boat up, we decided to drive down on the Sunday and relax at a hotel/resort for one night. I can't remember the name of the place but it was comfy, had a spa and came with breakfast. All up a good choice by Andrew who booked it! We rented the 8-10 berth boat which is essentially 4 bedrooms:
- 2 x double bed rooms
- 2 x double bunk rooms
You'll notice this adds up to 4 rooms, 8 sleeping locations - well the other 2 are the sofa bed arrangement in the dining/lounge area. Thankfully for us though, there was only five of us which left one of the bunk rooms spare. Guess where all the fishing and skiing gear was stored?
The house boat carried 2500L of fresh water which means plenty for hot showers, flushing toilet and usual drinking and dish-washing duties. It also came with a 240V generator to run the TV and video as well as exterior flood lighting and the microwave. All up it was very well equipped (see the web site above) and very comfortable. We picked the boat up around lunch time on Monday 8th Dec, and returned it at 9:30am on Friday 12th Dec. After a quick run around with Robert (who runs Clyde River House Boats) we were ready to head off up the river.
Driving a house boat is like trying to drive a car on ice - you turn the wheel but nothing happens for loooong time! With the whole boat weighing in at about 15 tonne (15,000kg = 33,000lb for the metric impared) it took a while to work up to full speed and even longer to slow to a stop. Made for interesting driving the first time we moored up!
Without wanting to sound droll, our week away went something like this:
- 7:30am (ish) - Some people emerge, breakfast is eaten and quietness is maintained for the late risers.
- 9:00am - Everyone is up by now and breakfast is done, dishes cleaned and ski's dragged out of "storage".
- 9:01am - James and Nat go skiing. Andrew and Tim probably already out fishing. Ali taggs along with James and Nat coz they need an observer!
- 10:30am (ish) - usually James and Nat are tuckered out from skiing so pack it all up. Ali can now start relaxing ;-)
- 12:00pm (ish) - Lunch is had, Andrew and Tim make a brief visit before disappearing again in the tinnie. Ali, Nat and James now settle in for a relaxing afternoon reading, snoozing and listening to music (the house boat has a CD sound system through the whole boat!).
- 5:00pm (ish) - fire up the gennie and start thinking about dinner. Tim and Andrew are back by now and the TV and Microwave are busy sucking that 240V. If we want to moore somewhere else for the night, we up anchor and move off about now too.
- 6:30pm - Dinner is done, dishes cleaned packed away. Now the "shower relay" begins.
- 7:30pm - shower relay is done and we see if there's anything worth watching on the idiot box. If not, it's either movie time (I did mention the VCR right?) and nibblies are dispersed. If we didn't feel like watching TV or a video, we usually stayed up playing dominos. Damn that makes us sound old!!
- 11:00pm - bed time for most. Tim and Andrew were known to stay up watching movies though.
Rinse and repeat for 5 days :) Bliss.