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Old 05-20-2014, 10:29 PM   #1
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Provisioning

New to the forum but not new to boating. Interested in learning from others on how they provision for multiple overnights on the hook. I am really interested in traveling to the bahamas from FL at some point. How do you provision (regardless of destination) and how do you store and keep up with it? Excel spreadsheet? etc?

Thanks,
Scott
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Old 05-20-2014, 10:59 PM   #2
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Welcome. Provisioning for the Bahamas is really no problem. Groceries can be found over there. In some stores like Maxwells in Marsh Harbour they can be on par with the US at fairly reasonable prices. The smaller islands have some stores available. Kalik is the beer of the Bahamas. Rum is fairly reasonable. The coconut bread toasted for breakfast is outstanding.

Now, here is what we do. When the grandkids are with us we go to Costco and load up on boxes of individual sizes of cookies, chips, and crackers. We also get the cartons of individual mac and cheese. We have individual insulated tumblers with tops, and load up on Crystal Lite drink mix for them. No cans or bottles to dispose of. We push the arm up on the ice maker, and load it with frozen entres'. We load a couple of coolers with ice to do until the icemaker goes back into service. Then just enough fruit, meat, and staples to get us through a few nights at anchor until getting to a provisioning spot.

We find that shopping with the locals keeps us involved with the locals. Outside of Freeport and Nassau they are very friendly, and it is safe. We have found that we pack less provisions ahead each year.
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Old 05-20-2014, 11:03 PM   #3
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We stuff the Suburban and when no more room is left we drive to the boat. We are enroute now, think I'll buy a mini SUV.
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Old 05-21-2014, 06:07 AM   #4
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We seperate all the long term stuff in different lockers.

Soup , sauce, salsa in a locker , desert in another , dry boxed stuff in a third.

On a smallish boat the sealing bags allow the boxes to be discarded for better packing.

Number the lockers , so if a guest is looking for pudding , you can just call out #3 and they can select from what the find.

IMPORT duty is the main tax in the Bahamas , so go stuffed with peivisions.

You can always eat them sometime,
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Old 05-21-2014, 06:48 AM   #5
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Most all of the Islands have their own local rum and is fairly inexpensive. Kalik beer in the Bahamas is good. Presidente in the Dominican Republic is much better, and comes in Australian sized bottles. You should bring your own Bourbon. Limes are plentiful and easily obtained locally.
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Old 05-21-2014, 06:50 AM   #6
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Just noticed where you are from neighbor, I am from Cleveland, Ga. How are you going to get around Buford Dam?
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Old 05-21-2014, 07:45 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by n36511 View Post
How do you provision (regardless of destination) and how do you store and keep up with it? Excel spreadsheet? etc?
Thanks,
Scott
My wife is the organizer. Since much of our storage is deep, she marks the tops of the canned goods and mixes them up a bit when she stores them so she can get a variety withoiut opening too many compartments.
She also keeps an inventory list in a old fashoned notebook and is diligent about keeping up with it.
For meat storage we freeze everything in portions in a vacuum sealer because that greatly reduces precious freezer space.
We don't refridgerate what doesn't really need it. For example if you can buy "fresh eggs" they will keep for weeks unrefridgerated (at least they do in the norhteast).
Dry goods like rice and pasta go into sealed plastic conrtainers.
Beer gets stored warm and we rotate into the fridge as "required".
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Old 05-21-2014, 09:26 AM   #8
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I do have a lot of interest in this topic as we pack in advance and move 1200 miles to spend the summer on board. There is good local provisioning and the boat easily holds enough frozen meats and fresh produce for a over a week but what we bring is a wide mix of spices, sauces, condiments and dry boxed rices pastas potatoes. I like to cook and this allows us, any time, on any whim,to prepare any type of evening meal that suits our fancy. It could be Asian, French, Italian, Indian or whatever.

I just looked at our stash to go to the boat. It is already packed and takes about a hamper and a half which includes a few canned goods as well.

I think we are getting smarter at this as this will be our fourth year doing it. The first year we had a van and a trailer. The second only a jammed full van and the third a less full van. Stuff stays on the boat as long as it does not freeze. The only reason we will have any more than we could put in a car trunk this year is that every year we remove and replace the electronics, tool box and valuables for security reasons. but the provisioning is easier each time.

Yes I use a speadsheet to make sure I bought and packed everything. I have one for provisions and one for mechanical electronic. We drive the distance and load up on adult beverages and fresh foods about 15 minutes from the boat. One other interesting thing we buy at the same time is a couple of colourful live plants to hang from the small bridge floor extension.
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Old 05-21-2014, 03:06 PM   #9
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My son will tell you Tabasco. That was his only seasoning for a 14 day trek. The rest of the stuff seemed to take care of itself as far as he was concerned.

You never have enough space, do as others have advised, break things down if you can out of their packaging. Packaging takes up space and adds to the trash. Work up menus as that cuts down on packing more than you need. If you expect to snag some fish along the way, the appropriate seasoning is helpful.
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Old 05-21-2014, 03:53 PM   #10
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It's easy; peanut butter and crackers plus your favorite beverage.
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Old 05-21-2014, 04:13 PM   #11
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Don't stock up on the rice, beans, pasta, basics, etc. Dry goods are readily available plus you will find your diet changes when you're in new areas. Bring the condiments that you like plus the creature comfort foods. Meats and chicken are expensive and quality is sometimes dubious so load the freezer. Fresh stuff, as much as you can bring with out spoilage. Beer is expensive in the Bahamas $48/case plus. Paper towels, zip-locks and toilet paper, bring them if you can. Remember the locals eat to. But don't forget the camera and sunscreen.
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Old 05-21-2014, 04:47 PM   #12
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I was in noviembre last year 2 1/2 weeks in bahamas. We are coming from New Bern ICW and over Ft.lauderdale to the bahamas.
This complet trip was 7 1/2 weeks.
Beer is in Bahamas very, very expensive. In marsh H. are the Wine and other Alkohol not soooo expensiv but the beer are to much.
And when you come to the " Dry Island " you have perhaps a very bad time
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Old 05-21-2014, 05:28 PM   #13
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It's easy; peanut butter and crackers plus your favorite beverage.
Close. But you forgot the ramen.
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Old 05-21-2014, 06:53 PM   #14
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Not sure what the OP's freezer situation is. We found one of the very most valuable tools we had on the boat was a vacuum sealer. Fantastic for all kinds of meats and fish, but also for soups and other prepared items. We had a lot of capacity so YMMV, but still, the quality of the frozen foods after sealing is great and by individually wrapping portions it saved a fair amount of room too. Allowed us to stock up on meat at Costco or Penn Dutch, saving $$$ and increasing quality.
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Old 05-21-2014, 08:53 PM   #15
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Great responses and thanks for sharing. I am on an inland lake, have bareboated a boat in south FL for a week, but have never really planned successfully for multiple nights on the hook. I have always had the crutch of having a place to re provision within 30min of wherever I anchored. I just upgraded to an Isotherm 192 and much of the advise on the vacuum bagging and freezing of meat makes complete sense. I have just always admired and wanted to be one of those guys that brings all that is needed and has no need to leave the anchorage. Using some of the wisdom posted, I think if I could convert one of my 100gal fuel tanks to wine storage, I would be set. . Seriously, thanks for the insight..... there seems to be a fine art to developing an effective system for provisioning a boat.
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Old 05-21-2014, 08:57 PM   #16
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Just noticed where you are from neighbor, I am from Cleveland, Ga. How are you going to get around Buford Dam?
There is a wake board ramp right at the edge of the dam....I think if I empty the tanks, I can clear the top of the dam

Our plan is to relocate the boat in a couple of years.
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Old 05-22-2014, 03:04 AM   #17
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If we are going out for a week, we make a rough meal/menu plan, and provision the boat to provide those meals. You always need extra treats, and basics. We usually oversupply ourselves, so do our friends. If in company, towards the end of the week invites given and received with other boats usually add "and don`t bring anything (except some wine of course)".
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Old 05-22-2014, 06:59 AM   #18
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Scott, I've attached a provisioning worksheet I use for traveling and moving boats. It'll give you an idea of what you need to have, use or abuse.
-Matt
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File Type: pdf Provisions.pdf (8.2 KB, 125 views)
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Old 05-22-2014, 09:04 AM   #19
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forget the conversion

Using some of the wisdom posted, I think if I could convert one of my 100gal fuel tanks to wine storage, I would be set.

For several years I have been making my own wine on the boat. It works out at less than a dollar a bottle. The 5 gallon container is under the sedan table and you never see it unless you lift the draped cloth. With summer heat you can convert a 5 gallon batch in 10 to 12 days. Even if the instructions say 28 days, nevertheless it is still clear and drinkable - about equivalent to Wallyworld wine. Just ask my neighbors at the marina - at a dollar a bottle I don't mind sharing
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Old 05-22-2014, 09:30 AM   #20
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Geez - you guys are organized.
We just buy some food and drinks on the way to the marina and head off for a week or two. We stock up on a few favourites, but we've found that food and drinks are available in most places. Not always the same, sometimes better. With a bit of luck, there are lots of seafood meals.
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