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59’ Wanderer

RGKJ4

Member
So we will be boarding a houseboat on June 28th for a week. My question to the experienced is… what would be the the furthest we could go and still make it back with the with a full tank on the 59’ Wanderer? We are leaving from Wahweep. Also, any suggestions on a cove that is somewhat safe from the occasional storms? Any help or tips will be greatly appreciated! Oh… can you bring gas in cans on the boat? Thank you all!
 

Blue x2

Member
One of our group rented that model a couple of years ago. We camped at what was the end of West canyon at the time, and then moved to Wetherill. They used up the toy tank for the ski boat, but made it back to Wahweap with 1/4 left on the main tank. Ran the genset morning and afternoon.
 

Ed_on_WD

Well-Known Member
I was kind of curious, so I looked up the specs on the boat you're renting.

The specs say that the main fuel tank holds 300 gallons, with a separate 100 gallon toy tank to fuel a ski boat or PWCs. The outboard engines burn 16 gallons per hour while underway, and the 20 KW generator burns 3 to 4 gallons per hour, depending on the electrical load. Those numbers sound "heavy", but that is what is in the specs. If you run air conditioning, figure 4 gallons per hour. The generator must be running to have hot water, or to use the electric stove. Refrigerators, lights, and the entertainment system should run on the battery pack, but the batteries will recharge when the generator is running. Keep generator usage to a minimum, and turn it off whenever possible. Plan for showers while cooking or running the A/C. Be smart and combine heavy electrical usage to occur at the same time. 20KW is a huge generator. It will handle it.

Just keep track of your fuel usage, at those rates. Keep an eye on the "house battery" readout, and switch the generator off as soon as it reads 100%. If you don't use the fuel in the toy tank, you can pump it into the main tank to make your available fuel go farther. You'll have some hard choices to make if your group loves A/C.

I can't tell you about beach availability at this lake level during peak season. Maybe somebody else can make a recommendation. My boat carries twice the fuel, and has a smaller generator, plus we usually go in September or October, so it is a lot cooler and we don't have to run the A/C. I've managed to spend 17 days up at Oak Bay without refueling. It's all about fuel discipline.

As to carrying extra gas in cans, well, all I can say is that a lot of people are thinking the same thing. Another Wordling (a regular poster on this board) has said that he expects a higher than normal number of boat fires this year, due to this situation. I doubt the marina encourages carrying extra gas cans on the houseboat.
 
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JFRCalifornia

Well-Known Member
I’ve rented that boat and had no trouble getting to the Escalante and back without refueling. The extra 8 miles each way because of the Castle Rock Cut closure shouldn’t matter... and as Ed says you can always transfer fuel from the toy tank...

You will get better gas mileage than the quoted specs...
 

Ryan

Well-Known Member
Did the upgrade the engines to those new Mercury Racing 450 HP on that boat? That’s about the only way I’d see it burning 16 gallons/hour/engine.

Seriously, what engines are on the boat? Find out and google the real consumption rate by RPM and you will have a better idea of range. Most houseboats seem to average about 8 MPH.

As far as taking fuel on the boat, the last time I rented anything (many years ago) I was told you could bring 30 gallons. I’d call and try to reach someone to confirm what the current regulations are. We take a lot more fuel than that, but we also are on a private boat.
 

RGKJ4

Member
One of our group rented that model a couple of years ago. We camped at what was the end of West canyon at the time, and then moved to Wetherill. They used up the toy tank for the ski boat, but made it back to Wahweap with 1/4 left on the main tank. Ran the genset morning and afternoon.
Thank you for the info.
 

RGKJ4

Member
I was kind of curious, so I looked up the specs on the boat you're renting.

The specs say that the main fuel tank holds 300 gallons, with a separate 100 gallon toy tank to fuel a ski boat or PWCs. The outboard engines burn 16 gallons per hour while underway, and the 20 KW generator burns 3 to 4 gallons per hour, depending on the electrical load. Those numbers sound "heavy", but that is what is in the specs. If you run air conditioning, figure 4 gallons per hour. The generator must be running to have hot water, or to use the electric stove. Refrigerators, lights, and the entertainment system should run on the battery pack, but the batteries will recharge when the generator is running. Keep generator usage to a minimum, and turn it off whenever possible. Plan for showers while cooking or running the A/C. Be smart and combine heavy electrical usage to occur at the same time. 20KW is a huge generator. It will handle it.

Just keep track of your fuel usage, at those rates. Keep an eye on the "house battery" readout, and switch the generator off as soon as it reads 100%. If you don't use the fuel in the toy tank, you can pump it into the main tank to make your available fuel go farther. You'll have some hard choices to make if your group loves A/C.

I can't tell you about beach availability at this lake level during peak season. Maybe somebody else can make a recommendation. My boat carries twice the fuel, and has a smaller generator, plus we usually go in September or October, so it is a lot cooler and we don't have to run the A/C. I've managed to spend 17 days up at Oak Bay without refueling. It's all about fuel discipline.

As to carrying extra gas in cans, well, all I can say is that a lot of people are thinking the same thing. Another Wordling (a regular poster on this board) has said that he expects a higher than normal number of boat fires this year, due to this situation. I doubt the marina encourages carrying extra gas cans on the houseboat.
this is outstanding information as we are first timers. Thank you so much!
 

RGKJ4

Member
I’ve rented that boat and had no trouble getting to the Escalante and back without refueling. The extra 8 miles each way because of the Castle Rock Cut closure shouldn’t matter... and as Ed says you can always transfer fuel from the toy tank...

You will get better gas mileage than the quoted specs...
Thank you very much!
 

RGKJ4

Member
Did the upgrade the engines to those new Mercury Racing 450 HP on that boat? That’s about the only way I’d see it burning 16 gallons/hour/engine.

Seriously, what engines are on the boat? Find out and google the real consumption rate by RPM and you will have a better idea of range. Most houseboats seem to average about 8 MPH.

As far as taking fuel on the boat, the last time I rented anything (many years ago) I was told you could bring 30 gallons. I’d call and try to reach someone to confirm what the current regulations are. We take a lot more fuel than that, but we also are on a private boat.
Really appreciate the info!
 

Peto

Well-Known Member
The Padre Bay/ Kane Creek area is going to be a cluster due to everyone being afraid to venture much further up steam.

Powell Bay in Last Chance would be my target.
 

Ed_on_WD

Well-Known Member
this is outstanding information as we are first timers. Thank you so much!
Let's do some math, shall we?

You're leaving out of Wahweap Marina, via the Maytag Straits, past Padre Bay (to avoid the yahoos), to somewhere around Face Canyon (buoy 25), Last Chance Bay (buoy 28), or West Canyon (let's call it the same distance as buoy 30).

Using Last Chance as a theoretical destination, that's about 32 miles uplake from the Wahweap Rental dock. Please note, Last Chance is a very long bay, and the figure used only gets you to the mouth of Last Chance. At 8 mph, that's a 4 hour cruise. There are Wakeless Zones at Anchovy Point leaving Wahweap Bay, and at Antelope Point Marina, which you have to pass through, but we'll simplify our calculations and leave out the reduced fuel consumption and extra time in those areas. The specs on that boat say it burns 16 gallons per hour while underway. That figure is for BOTH motors, NOT for EACH motor. So 4 hours multiplied by 16 gallons per hour equal 64 gallons to arrive at the mouth of Last Chance. You will consume the same amount of gas covering the same distance on your return, so 128 gallons burned in transit, both ways.

Starting out with 300 gallons in the main tank, subtracting 128 gallons allocated to the outboards for travelling, you are left with 172 gallons to burn in your generator. Doing all your High Electrical Demand activities like showers, cooking, and using the A/C simultaneously, that 20 KW generator is going to burn 4 gallons per hour. 172 gallons left in your main tank, divided by 4 gallons per hour, left you enough gas to run the generator for 43 hours. On a 7 day trip, that allows for 6 hours of generator use each day. Let's hope it's not 110 degrees outside.

If you have a runabout or PWCs, the toy tank is going to be used keeping those fueled up. If you don't have anything to fuel up out of the toy tank, and you can pump that off into the main tank, that extra 100 gallons will allow you to run that generator an extra 25 hours, so 43 plus 25 give you a total of 68 hours of generator run time, which, when spread over a 7 day trip gives you the ability to run the generator for almost 10 hours per day. Better, but that still means taking care to get the most efficient use of the generator run time.

As others have stated the specs are quoting a really heavy fuel consumption rate for the outboards, but it is probably done to make sure you don't cut your fuel usage calculations too close.

So, in summary, back off the throttles, to maybe 6 mph, and stretch out the cruising fuel. Allow that extra fuel for driving around to find a beach and maneuvering into your camp once you find it. These numbers leave you arriving back a Wahweap on vapors, so you must never let that generator run if it is not ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY. Your vacation might be unpleasantly warm at times, but the alternative is running out of fuel and having to pay the rental office to send a rescue boat to do an emergency refuel. There's one word for that: EXPENSIVE. As if $5.03 for regular at Wahweap isn't bad enough! And, do yourself a favor: Make sure that the gas tanks are both ACTUALLY full BEFORE you depart. If you leave with anything less than 100% of the fuel you're supposed to have, all these calculations go out the window.

Take care, watch for whales, and enjoy the lake. I did 2 rentals before I bought into my own houseboat 15 years ago. Beware, you might find that this trip is the start of a regular habit.
 
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Ed, 10 hours a day of generator is not enough??!!?? Holy smokes. Our last trip there in 2019 we ran the generator about 1 hour a day to charge everyone's cell phones for pics and music. And to charge the boat batteries. Never turned on the A/C. Showers?? Lake baths are great! I guess I go to Powell for different reasons than most.

Our last trip there I had 12 cans of gas with me on the rental out of Bullfrog. Nobody said a word...the cart runners even helped me load them on the boat.
 

Ed_on_WD

Well-Known Member
I don't run A/C either, but I'm out there when the weather is much more pleasant. That's how I went 17 days with a crew of 5 and no refueling, even with a big block jet boat and a Wave Runner.

I'm responding to a first timer, who might not know what considerations there are, and whose guests might not know what they're getting into. If he's out there in 110 degree weather with guests who might be used to the Hilton, well, it might be a shock to them. He did not mention the size of his group, or their ages. If they run the A/C all day, and then find out on their last day that the boat dies in the main channel because the tank is dry, that'll ruin the trip, for sure.

Newbies without fuel discipline might run the generator all day, not knowing the consequences. On our boat, we track each groups generator usage, and we've discovered that some of our July and August people were racking up 18 to 20 generator hours PER DAY! What saved them was the fact that our boat leaves the dock with 700 gallons on board, and our generator is a new 15 KW unit. Plus, those A/C lovers had the option of topping up at Dangling Rope.

I'm just pointing out that one must sometimes adjust expectations in order to avoid unforeseen consequences. And, as always, their mileage may vary.
 
I don't run A/C either, but I'm out there when the weather is much more pleasant. That's how I went 17 days with a crew of 5 and no refueling, even with a big block jet boat and a Wave Runner.

I'm responding to a first timer, who might not know what considerations there are, and whose guests might not know what they're getting into. If he's out there in 110 degree weather with guests who might be used to the Hilton, well, it might be a shock to them. He did not mention the size of his group, or their ages. If they run the A/C all day, and then find out on their last day that the boat dies in the main channel because the tank is dry, that'll ruin the trip, for sure.

Newbies without fuel discipline might run the generator all day, not knowing the consequences. On our boat, we track each groups generator usage, and we've discovered that some of our July and August people were racking up 18 to 20 generator hours PER DAY! What saved them was the fact that our boat leaves the dock with 700 gallons on board, and our generator is a new 15 KW unit. Plus, those A/C lovers had the option of topping up at Dangling Rope.

I'm just pointing out that one must sometimes adjust expectations in order to avoid unforeseen consequences. And, as always, their mileage may vary.
I get your point!
 

RGKJ4

Member
One of our group rented that model a couple of years ago. We camped at what was the end of West canyon at the time, and then moved to Wetherill. They used up the toy tank for the ski boat, but made it back to Wahweap with 1/4 left on the main tank. Ran the genset morning and afternoon.
Thank you very much for the info.
 

RGKJ4

Member
Let's do some math, shall we?

You're leaving out of Wahweap Marina, via the Maytag Straits, past Padre Bay (to avoid the yahoos), to somewhere around Face Canyon (buoy 25), Last Chance Bay (buoy 28), or West Canyon (let's call it the same distance as buoy 30).

Using Last Chance as a theoretical destination, that's about 32 miles uplake from the Wahweap Rental dock. Please note, Last Chance is a very long bay, and the figure used only gets you to the mouth of Last Chance. At 8 mph, that's a 4 hour cruise. There are Wakeless Zones at Anchovy Point leaving Wahweap Bay, and at Antelope Point Marina, which you have to pass through, but we'll simplify our calculations and leave out the reduced fuel consumption and extra time in those areas. The specs on that boat say it burns 16 gallons per hour while underway. That figure is for BOTH motors, NOT for EACH motor. So 4 hours multiplied by 16 gallons per hour equal 64 gallons to arrive at the mouth of Last Chance. You will consume the same amount of gas covering the same distance on your return, so 128 gallons burned in transit, both ways.

Starting out with 300 gallons in the main tank, subtracting 128 gallons allocated to the outboards for travelling, you are left with 172 gallons to burn in your generator. Doing all your High Electrical Demand activities like showers, cooking, and using the A/C simultaneously, that 20 KW generator is going to burn 4 gallons per hour. 172 gallons left in your main tank, divided by 4 gallons per hour, left you enough gas to run the generator for 43 hours. On a 7 day trip, that allows for 6 hours of generator use each day. Let's hope it's not 110 degrees outside.

If you have a runabout or PWCs, the toy tank is going to be used keeping those fueled up. If you don't have anything to fuel up out of the toy tank, and you can pump that off into the main tank, that extra 100 gallons will allow you to run that generator an extra 25 hours, so 43 plus 25 give you a total of 68 hours of generator run time, which, when spread over a 7 day trip gives you the ability to run the generator for almost 10 hours per day. Better, but that still means taking care to get the most efficient use of the generator run time.

As others have stated the specs are quoting a really heavy fuel consumption rate for the outboards, but it is probably done to make sure you don't cut your fuel usage calculations too close.

So, in summary, back off the throttles, to maybe 6 mph, and stretch out the cruising fuel. Allow that extra fuel for driving around to find a beach and maneuvering into your camp once you find it. These numbers leave you arriving back a Wahweap on vapors, so you must never let that generator run if it is not ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY. Your vacation might be unpleasantly warm at times, but the alternative is running out of fuel and having to pay the rental office to send a rescue boat to do an emergency refuel. There's one word for that: EXPENSIVE. As if $5.03 for regular at Wahweap isn't bad enough! And, do yourself a favor: Make sure that the gas tanks are both ACTUALLY full BEFORE you depart. If you leave with anything less than 100% of the fuel you're supposed to have, all these calculations go out the window.

Take care, watch for whales, and enjoy the lake. I did 2 rentals before I bought into my own houseboat 15 years ago. Beware, you might find that this trip is the start of a regular habit.
Wow, thank you Ed for all this info. I really appreciate you talking the time and sharing this with me.
 
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