How to rent a houseboat for a vacation in the California Delta

For a family or group, renting a houseboat can make a funvacation. Call well in advance to book for summer months.

In addition to renting the boat, be prepared to pay forfuel.

Don't motor at night.

Check the tide tables before docking for the night and beforepassing under bridges.

Check currents and wind conditions before docking.

Bring linens and sleeping bags.

Pack light, since storage space can be tight. Bring sunscreen,bug repellent, a flashlight, warm clothing for cool nights, andextra towels for bathing.

Bring groceries with you, since a marina's selection can belimited.

WHERE TO RENT

Paradise PointMarina. Costs start at $1,150 for three days and two nights ona 10-person boat (from $1,350 Jun 16-Sep 1 and Memorial Dayweekend). Seven Crown Resorts, 8095 Rio Blanco Rd., Stockton; (209)952-1000.

Delta Houseboat Rentals. From $1,495 for two weekend nightsor three weeknights on a 10-person boat (from $2,095 Jun 3-Aug 30).Forever Resorts, 1400Old Levee Rd., Walnut Grove; (800) 255-5561, or (916) 776-4270.

Herman& Helen's Marina. From $740 for three nights on asix-person boat. Venice Island Ferry, Stockton; (800) 676-4841, or(209) 951-4634.

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