Lake Mead Travel Information

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS about houseboating at Lake Mead

If your question is not addressed here, please send email to  We answer most email within 24 hours.  Please specify you are asking about Lake Mead.

We have published a guide for planning a houseboat trip at:

How do I check boat and houseboat availability?

Checking availability via e-mail is nearly impossible. The inventory  fluctuates from minute to minute. Your best bet is to select a vacation date and  fill out the on-line request form. You will NOT be required to pay a deposit at that time.  Please note, we  submit your request as soon as it is received. We must wait for a hard copy of  your reservation before we are able to send you a confirmation. Generally this  takes a few days, however, unless you hear from us that your request is not  available, a reservation was most likely secured for you and is being processed.  Upon receipt of your request, you will receive an e-mail message acknowledging  our receipt of your reservation.

If the boat is indeed available, we will reserve it for you. You will then  have approximately 10 days to provide a credit card to secure the reservation.  If you do not respond, the reservation will be cancelled. Please note that all  correspondence is generally handled via e-mail so we recommend you check your  messages at least once a day.

Boats from Callville Bay require deposit up front.

Can you please explain the check-out/check-in  procedures?

At Callville Bay Marina, stop by the boat rental office at the docks any time after 8 a.m. and prior to 10 a.m. Be sure to have all your paperwork and the full names of everyone in your party.

Upon arrival, you will see a large, brick circular drive in front of a store/cafe, lounge, restaurant and administrative offices. The boat rental docks (where you check in) are located to the left of this building where you will see a large number of houseboats lined up in a row. To the right are private docks and launch ramp -- you do not want to go there unless you are launching your own boat.

After finalizing your paperwork at the boat rental office, you will be escorted to your boat. The Captain and Co-Captain will remain behind to attend a brief instruction course. During this time, the rest of the crew should load the houseboat. Once the Captains have completed their course, a marina employee will give final instructions on returning the boat.

Your boat must be unloaded, cleaned and fueled by 2 p.m. (and there is a charge for every 15 minutes beyond this time, so start early). Upon your return, and after your houseboat has been fueled, your boat should be unloaded and cleaned by your crew. A responsible member of your party should again check the inventory. Once a marina employee has checked your boat, you will be free to leave.

As a side note, small gratuities (a few dollar tip) go a long way.


What about early boarding?

At Callville Bay, you may sleep board your houseboat the evening before your departure.  Rates vary from $250 to $550 (plus tax) depending on the model of the houseboat. You MAY NOT leave the marina. If this is an option you are interested in  taking advantage of, you should book this as soon as possible.

Upon arrival, check in and complete your initial paperwork.  At 8 a.m. the following morning, you will follow the standard check-out procedures.

A limited amount of early boards are available on a first come, first served basis and reservations must be made in advance.  We recommend you reserve this option before you pay your deposit.

Can anyone pilot a houseboat and is there a special license  required?

All rental boats are designed for ease of operation and durability. You must  be 21 years of age and present a valid  driver's license. A foreign or International driver's license acceptable, but a passport alone is not enough. No special boating licenses or skills are required. The captain must understand English well enough to receive instruction.

Upon checkout of your boat or houseboat, an experienced instructor will be  assigned to you for an orientation session. This individual will show you how to operate all equipment on  your vessel. Also, you will be shown how to pilot the boat.

How long will our orientation be?

Orientations range form 1-2 hours, depending on how many questions you have and how much houseboating experience you have.  Orientations for your trip are on a first come/first serve basis starting at 7 am during summer season and 8 am during value season.

What amenities and equipment are provided on the  houseboats?

All Lake Mead houseboats are fully stocked with all eating utensils provided  for the maximum capacity allowed on the boats, e.g. if you have a houseboat with  the capacity for eight passengers, you would be provided with all necessary  eating utensils required for eight people.  We strongly urge you to bring disposable utensils, plates and napkins.

Cooking utensils provided include bowls, pots, pans, cheese grater, cutting board,  cutlery, pitcher, coffee makers and filters, toaster, microwave, can opener,  blender, hot pads, ice pick, ice chests and wine opener. We recommend you bring  your own plastic storage containers.

Also included on each boat is a broom, dustpan, mop, bucket, fly swatter,  garbage cans, garbage bags, toilet paper, toilet bowl brush, soap, dish drainer  and mat, dish rags and pot scrubbers.

At Callville Bay, you will find paper towels, hammer, anchor stakes  and ice chests.

Outdoor equipment and supplies include two anchors and lines, deck  chairs, captain's chair, ash trays, 2 built in ice chests, hammer, anchor  stakes, personal floatation devices (life vests), and gas grill.

All houseboats have a stove and range, shower and bathroom, window coverings,  air conditioner, dining room table, interior and exterior lights, as well as  stairs to the roof of the houseboat which is fully accessible by you. Please  note, you cannot ride on the upper deck while the boat is underway.

Callville Bay 59' and 65' houseboats have one propane refrigerator and one electric refrigerator. The 70' Millennium offers two baths; the 59' houseboats have 1 1/2 baths and the 50's houseboats offer one bath.

Are linens and bedding provided?

At Callville Bay, linens are provided for each bed on board the houseboat, but not for the boat maximum capacity.

If the houseboat's capacity is 12, what do we do with the extra  passengers in our group? Do infants count toward the number of  passengers?

Infants, toddlers and small children all "count" toward the number of people on the boat. Toddler life vests are provided, but infant life vests are limited to availability. You should bring an Coast Guard approved personal flotation device for your infant. Please request toddler life vests when checking out your houseboat.

At Callville Bay, you may not exceed the houseboat capacity.

If you have "extra" bodies that you would like to bring along, we recommend  renting a ski boat or personal watercraft. The extra people will have to ride in this while you are moving on the Lake (the ski boat and/or personal watercraft cannot be towed behind with the riders in it). The advantages are many. You 'll  have an extra vessel for exploring, and making trips to one of the many marinas  on Lake Mead. This allows you to establish a base camp with the houseboat and to explore the lake in vessels that travel faster than houseboats and are much more maneuverable.

Can we ride on top of the boat? Can we tow personal watercraft?  Can we transport our personal watercraft on the deck of the houseboat?  Can we tow our rental boat?

You cannot ride on the upper deck while the boat is underway.

You may NOT tow rental personal watercraft behind your houseboat. You MAY tow rental powerboats and an instructor will show you the proper method for towing. Personal watercraft are not permitted on the houseboats as they damage the houseboat deck.  Any damage caused by putting a personal watercraft on the deck will be charged against the damage deposit.  You MAY tow your own personal watercraft and your own  boat as well, however, you will need to provide your own tow ropes.

How much fuel will we use on our trip? How much does it cost?  Can we bring extra fuel for watercraft?

You MAY NOT store extra fuel on your rental houseboat or rental powerboat. Fuel prices at Lake  Mead fluctuate throughout the season. All  rental houseboats discussed here use unleaded gas and not pre-mix.

Houseboats use approximately 6 to 8 gallons per hour depending on size of houseboat, traveling speed, weight and weather conditions. The two-cycle boat holds 200 gallons of fuel which a cruising speed of approximately 8 to 10 mph, consuming 3 to 4 gallons of oil. Every boat  has a generator (110 AC plugs/9-12.5 kilowatt) which will use approximately another 2 to 5 gallons of gas per hour, depending on use. Your generator powers your air conditioner, most lights, some electrical appliances and outlets.

May I take my boat or houseboat anywhere on Lake Mead and what  destinations should I plan on visiting?

You may take your houseboat anywhere that is accessible on Lake Mead and any closed areas will be shown to you at the time of check out. Generally, areas are closed due to submerged hazards. Marina employees can  inform you of great fishing spots as well as more secluded areas of the lake.

Where do we dock at night? Can we anchor in the middle of the  Lake? Are there beaches to camp on?

Lake Mead has many large sandy beaches which are perfect for overnighting.

Dropping anchor in the middle of the lake is impossible as it is several  hundred feet deep. You may drop anchor in the shallow areas of the canyons,  however, a beach is more desirable.

If you wish to swim in the middle of Lake Mead, turn off your engines, wait  till the boat stops moving and jump in. One person should remain on board. NEVER operate the engines while people  are in the water or using the slide. Please note, you should be out of the main  traffic areas (main channel) before enjoying a dip in the lake.

Are slips available for overnight?

Slips are available based on the number of nights. Please e-mail for  additional information.

Can we bring our household pets?

At Callville Bay, pets are not allowed.

What kind of refrigerators are on the houseboat?

At Callville Bay, the 70' Millennium features a full-size refrigerator; the 59' and 65' houseboats have one electric and one propane, the 50' houseboats offer propane refrigerators.  At Echo Bay , all are propane.  Unlike the one in your home, the 8 cubic foot refrigerator on board must be lightweight and operate on propane, not electricity.  Because of this, the manufactuer uses less insulation; therefore, the refrigerators don't run as cold as your home unit.

When temperatures reach 95 F or higher, we recommend using ice chests with regular ice or dry ice (not provided) for products that are perishable, such as meat and dairy products (dry ice not available at resorts).  Be sure to use frozen ice packs (e.g. Blue Ice) or put food in ziplock bags to keep melting ice out of food stored in the ice chest.

We do not recommend bringing ice cream, popsicles or an products that require the use of a freezer.

We recommend that you use the refrigerator for other food products, such as fruit and vegetables.


All rates and amenities subject to change.


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