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What's Up Outdoors: Slow down on the water

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It looks like all of our seasons of extremes are right on course.

After a super cold and long winter we now have rain, and more rain. Lakes from Canada to the southern part of the state are flooding. Not only is this causing "closed throttle" on some lakes because of erosion, but another danger is debris. This is especially true on Rainy Lake and Lake of the Woods.

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I have talked to some guides and they say it is the highest water they have ever seen. At least an 80 year flood. And what does this mean? Well it means 80 years of trees, deadheads, stumps and old docks floating around on the lake. Around Brainerd there is a lot of debris coming down the Mississippi and I have seen quite a bit of wood floating on Gull Lake. What does this mean for boaters? Well at the least hitting something with your boat can cause cosmetic damage, or could cause severe lower unit damage and even can cause you to be knocked out of your boat and lose control.

Also, if you are fishing with someone have them be on the lookout for things in the water. I know it is very over looked but with the conditions you should definitely be wearing a PFD and attaching your engine tether cord. The last thing you want to be doing is swimming after your boat. As this stuff will be floating around until it finds a new resting place so be on the lookout all summer. I know that on a hot summer day life jackets can be a bother and very warm, but checkout the new inflatable types. I find since I got one I wear mine more often, you actually forget you are wearing it. Remember taking a few safety precautions will make sure you are not "that guy" on the evening news.

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