DNR Reminding Walleye Weekend Participants To Make Sure Their Boats Are Ready & To Check Registrations
(Spirit Lake)-- For many, Walleye Weekend will be the first time of the season to have boats out on the water. Prior to getting to the boat ramp, though, Jeff Morrison, an enforcement officer with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, says the very first thing you need to do is to make sure your registration is up to date as this is a registration year...
"That really is one of the first things that they should look at, is make sure that they have the 2019 sticker on their boat. It's an orange sticker this year and they need to make sure that they've got that up to date before they go out."
If it isn't, Morrison says you'll need to make a trip to the County Recorder's Office.
He adds it's important to make sure your boat is ready to go and that everything works properly...
"This is probably going to be one of the first times they are probably going to be on the water and if they haven't had a chance to water test it you could also be in one of those embarrassing situations where you get to the boat ramp and it won't start. So certainly if they've got external gas tanks, getting fresh gas in those gas tanks, charging up the batteries...making sure that's all good to go, making sure that they're lights work, obviously. Traditionally a lot of the fishing is, for walleye, is done after dark and, you know, you don't want to find out five minutes before the opener at midnight that you don't have lights that work, so you put it on the boat ramp and your lights don't work then you've got a problem that you've got to address before you go out."
Morrison also reminds everyone of the state's invasive species law. It's illegal to transport any water from a lake or river to another body of water. That means all live wells, bait buckets and bilges need to be drained and dried. It's also illegal to transport a trailer or boat with any weeds attached.
Morrison adds you'll probably need to be patient, too, as boat ramps likely will be busy this weekend.