High gas prices may affect holiday boating

By Sara Gouedy - bio | email

CINCINNATI, OH (WXIX) -- High gas prices have hit another industry hard -- boating.

This weekend, you may see a lot fewer boats out on the Ohio River for the Fourth of July.

For years, boating was a luxury many people could not afford, and with gas prices sky high, it's headed that way again.

Sometimes it's a lonely ride on the river for Bob Moore.

"The gas prices are killing everybody," he said.

This life-long boating enthusiast says this season's hit hard. Even he is feeling it when he fills up his house boat.

Gas right now at Riverside Marina is running about 4.75 for a gallon. Some say that's enough to sweep a man away with the current.

"To fill it up right now, I only get about 40 to 60 gallons so that would be about a thousand dollars to fill it up," said Moore.

But at Riverside Marina, you still find optimism.

David Bricking says the boating industry's not sunk...yet.

He still makes money from dock fees.

"I have about 100 in the water and 60 to 70 up on the hill," he said.

Bricking admits though he's seen a lot of people get out of boating quick. Now his dock relies mostly on long time customers.

"Gas can change a lot of things in the world and I think we've seen that. Fortunately we're going to survive it this year with the people that are still using their boats," he said.

Moore says he'll still hit water no matter what happens to the gas price, even if it means he's the only one still left afloat.

Moore predicts this weekend will have one of the worst turnouts in a long time. He says his friends at the dock even canceled an annual poker run set for later this month, because people couldn't afford to do it anymore.