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Kandiyohi County deputies issue many warnings but sheriff satisfied with overall compliance with no wake advisory

WILLMAR — Kandiyohi County deputies issued about 40 verbal warnings Friday and Saturday for people who were disobeying the no wake advisory on area lakes.

But, considering the number of people who use the county’s numerous lakes, that number probably isn’t too bad, Kandiyohi County Sheriff Dan Hartog said Sunday evening.

Hartog said he didn’t have information from the full weekend, yet, but “with the amount of warnings given and the amount of boats that were out there, I think we had pretty good compliance,” he said.

Hartog had issued the no wake advisory on Wednesday after heavy rains caused lake levels to rise in the county. More rain has fallen since the advisory was issued.

Hartog advised boaters to not create wakes with any type of watercraft, including boats, pontoons and personal watercraft, in an effort to prevent further erosion of shorelines.

On Sunday, Hartog said he did not know how long the advisory would remain in effect. “It’s in effect until the water levels drop,” he said, and that will be dependent on the weather.

On its website Sunday, the National Weather Service predicted at least a slight chance of thunderstorms for every day in the coming week in west central Minnesota.

Hartog said he stays in contact with the state Department of Natural Resources regarding the water levels.

“We’re asking for people’s patience and compliance,” he said.

In initial reports from the weekend, deputies issued a half dozen warnings about the advisory, mostly on Green Lake. They also fielded a report from a resident on Indian Beach Road on Green Lake’s east side who said he couldn’t find his dock.

On Saturday, they received numerous calls, so many they were unable to respond to some of them in time because of the heavy load. According to the reports, they explained to callers that the county has only so many boats available for lake patrols.

The Saturday list included a male waterskiing on George Lake and “jet skiers that don’t believe in the no wake advisory” on Lake Florida. Several pontoons towing inner tubes were also warned on Ringo Lake and North Long Lake.

A preliminary tally of warnings on Saturday included five on Diamond Lake, one on Norway Lake, four on North Long Lake, 10 on Green Lake, nine on Big Kandiyohi Lake, one on Florida, one on Monongalia and two on Ringo.

Readers of the Tribune’s Facebook page said they saw most people obeying the rules.

“I’ve never seen boats go so slow before but glad to see people were following the rules,” posted Kelly Kojetin.

“Everyone on Lake Florida seemed to be obeying,” posted Helen Ruebel. She noted a side benefit, “One really gets to see a lot of the lake when going slow.”

Sara Buboltz agreed. “No wake = peaceful. Love it!” she wrote.

Betsy Bjur said she saw boats on Green Lake doing their best to keep the water calm; “even a boat pulling a tube with kids (was) going very slow.”

Linda Vanderwerf

I cover education issues for the West Central Tribune and have worked for the paper since 1995. I have worked in journalism since 1981.

Follow me on Twitter: @lindavanderwerf

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