A: In the South, you can't count on dry, cold air during winter. The weather can be mild and wet. Not that folks in the north can get away with slipshod winter preparation. We all have to worry about the same problem-mildew. When I get my boat ready for winter, I remember this mnemonic: COLD, which stands for clean, open, loose, dry. If you keep your boat's furniture in this condition, it's almost impossible for mildew to grow. I won't mention your boat's equipment, because in my opinion, everything except the anchor and rode should be moved home for dry, secure stowage. I always start my winter prep by removing all the electronics, personal gear, bedding, bunk cushions, and curtains off the boat. If you have a garage with exposed joists, lay the foam inserts from the bunk cushions over them. When the boat is empty, go belowdecks and open anything that's closed. One warning: Beware of open floorboards when you return to the boat for a visit, you don't want your first step onboard to be a doozy.