building a boat dock.

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Hiya friends!

I'm here to dispel a myth today.  It's this: "Oh, it must be so nice to build a new house and have everything done at one time!"

Wrong.

This house is more of a work-in-progress than our last house was.  Only 80% of the actual house is finished, the landscaping is still... annoying tedious, and even though we live on the lake, we had no way to access it for the last 2.5 years.

So this spring, we finally allotted the cash to building a boat dock.  For those of you who are unaware, I'm here to educate you: building a dock is expensive.  I'm talking, put one kid through college expensive.  So, while we would have loved to do this at the same time we built our house, it just wasn't feasible.  For anything "extra" like this, we're paying cash, so we have to space these out a little bit.  Next year, we might finish part of the basement!  And the year after that, I'm sure something else will come up that we want to do.

Oh, speaking of expensive, the dock is still only 50% finished, because putting a roof (or roof deck) on is $$$$$$.  So yeah, I'm keeping it real here today because this is REAL LIFE.  Things don't happen overnight.  I think if you read as many blogs as I do, the slow pace of "real life" can feel downright discouraging because legit bloggers (of which I am not) are able to do makeovers at the speed of light.  ANYWAY, got a little off topic there.

Here's our experience building a boat dock!


We opted for a stationary dock (vs. a floating dock) because they're generally more sturdy and can stand up to the elements a little better.  Plus I just liked the idea of being able to sit out there and not worry about my drink spilling if a big wake comes through.  We had our contractor build the dock as if he was putting a roof on it, so that we can easily add one later.  The supports are in all the right places to support a roof, etc.


The dock has two "fingers." A lower one on the left for accessing the boat, and a higher one on the right for hanging out.  One thing about a stationary dock - if the water level gets a little high, then the lower finger could potentially be submerged.  We haven't run into that issue with ours yet, although the water is high at the moment.  In these photos, the water was historically low because the power company was doing some maintenance on the dam and had lowered water levels.  Normally, the water level is about a foot or so below the lower finger.


We chose to use all-weather composite decking so we could be barefoot and not have to worry about splinters. Also, so we don't have to deal with the maintenance that wood decking requires.  I also chose to do a picture framing detail around the outside of the deck boards.  Not only does it just look a little nicer, but I think it looks more finished because you can't see the cut edges of the boards at all. It was a little more money (because of the labor involved to lay the boards this way), but I think it was worth it.


It took the guys about 3 weeks to build it - and we couldn't be happier with the result!


We ordered the same railing that we have on the deck so that everything is nice and cohesive.  We still need to order some furniture to sit out here - we're thinking Adirondack chairs.  We were also going to put an umbrella out here, but the dock is in the shade the majority of the day so it's not needed.  Also, spiders hide in umbrellas and no thank you.  You've never dealt with spiders until you live on the lake - spiders love a moist environment apparently.  Ugh.


You can see in this ^ picture just how low the water level was!  See how low the boat is compared to the dock - now scroll back up to the previous picture and see where the boat normally sits.  It was crazy.  S2 doesn't really have the patience for fishing, but she likes the idea of it.  Now it's nice to have somewhere to fish.


I thought I would include a picture of the dock from the house (just ignore the green concrete - we have to get the pressure washer out soon).  This was when it was just finished, hence no leaves on the trees yet. 


Oh, and a photo from the water, with our house in the background.  Here you can really see how far our house is from the actual water (it's quite the trek to get down the hill).

And a final after picture!  We are so glad to finally be able to enjoy all that lake living has to offer now.





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