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Great Lakes regs.


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O.K. I have been on the coast gaurd HSOforum for an hour. I think I am more confused now. The closest thing I could find is the boat saftey checklist, but that is for all boats and not boat specific. Has anyone been on Lake Superior?

Here is what I have, let me know what else I should have.

It is a 2001 1750 sportfish

merc.125 two stroke

merc.9.9 four stroke

minkota 24v trolling motor

life vests, and throwables

marine band 2 way radio with weather alert and S.O.S.

two extinguishers


nav. lights(of course)



cell phone

I believe I need a flare gun. I don't know if I need visual distress thingies.

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I just found this list on the US coast guard boating safety HSOforum. It is not a real clear picture but it should help you.

This is just what they can regulate not exactly how it is regulated. Looks like you do need the visual distress items. I think a flare gun qualifies as this.

"Federal Regulations

The federal statutes authorize the U.S. Coast Guard to regulate the manufacture and safety standards of recreational boats and boating-related equipment. These include regulations for:

Manufacturer certification

Identification of boats

Display of capacity information

Safe loading

Safe powering


Electrical systems

Fuel systems


Start-in-gear protection

Navigation lights

Backfire flame control

Negligent operation

Operating a vessel while under the influence of alcohol or a dangerous drug

Numbering undocumented vessels

Reporting undocumented vessel accidents and casualties

State numbering and casualty reporting systems

Carriage and use of personal flotation devices (PFDs)

Carriage and use of visual distress signals (VDS)

Carriage of fire extinguishing equipment

Correction of especially hazardous conditions

Regulated boating areas

Vessel identification system

Safety Standards and Regulations for Recreational Boats and Equipment Regulations for Operators of Recreational and Undocumented Vessels

Code of Federal Regulations: Title 46

Code of Federal Regulations: Title 33"

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This year it could be the end of may. grin.gif I actually wouldn't have a clue on superior but I think we will have a late ice out all over the state this year. I just drilled thru at least 36 inches on saturday. Sure makes a guy think twice about making swiss cheese.

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All the info you need is on the DNR HSOforum link posted. There is a ton of good info there. I would also look at contacting the Duluth Power Squadron, they wrote the book on safety up here.

As for ice out, a week ago folks were still launching out of Two Harbors, I believe its pretty locked up now. I typically will head out the first week of April, March 26th was my first trip last year, as posted before, check in the Duluth forum as your trip nears for more info on the fishing.

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