The boating season in fast approaching and, If you haven’t already guessed, we love boating. Particularly wake surfing and water skiing. These are some of the glorious joys in life! But nothing ruins a fantastic day on the lake like someone getting hurt. So although it’s not a fun topic to cover, we still want to give you a few guidelines on the regulations in Idaho to help everyone stay safe. 

5 Idaho Boating Laws to Stay Safe

1. If you’re boating on a vessel that is 19 feet in length or less, anyone 14 years of age and younger must wear an approved PFD while the vessel is underway. (We provide PFD’s with all our boat rentals, so this one’s an easy one to follow.)

2. Any and every person on board a personal watercraft (PWC) or being towed behind must wear a Coast Guard approved Type I, II, III or V PFD. (Ski belts do not meet this requirement. Sorry.)

3. If you’re fly-fishing with float tubes on a lake with less than 200 surface acres, you are not required to wear a PFD, but if you’re fly fishing on a pontoon, you are required to wear a PFD on all Idaho waters.

4. In Idaho, there is a No-Wake Speed in certain areas, particularly within 100ft of any dock or swimmer.

This speed is 5 miles per hour. The only exception to this is if you are pulling a skier off of or returning them to the vicinity of a dock. If you’re pulling a skier, try to keep the time you’re above 5 mph to a minimum. 

5. Even if there isn’t a speed limit posted, please keep #4 in mind. It is part of Idaho law to respect the No-Wake Speed areas.

Like we said, not exactly a rip-roaring fun time topic, but it’s definitely good to cover. We encourage you to know the regulations before heading out on the boat. Here are a couple links to more in depth sites for Idaho boating laws and requirements.

Idaho Boating Laws

Parks and Recreation Guide to Boating Requirements in Idaho

Let’s stay safe and have an amazing season boating on Idaho waters!

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