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-   -   I got stopped for surfing in Ohio (http://www.wakeworld.com/forum/showthread.php?t=795754)

nailem 10-01-2012 6:19 AM

I got stopped for surfing in Ohio
I traveled from Erie, PA to Alum lake in Ohio this past weekend. Alum was recommended on this site for a good place to go and it didn't let me down until Saturday afternoon. we were surfing and got stopped. he said he had never seen wakesurfing before and did not think it was legal. he said since there is no rope he classified the board a s a vessel and all vessels have to be registered. also you can not jump the wake of another vessel within so many feet. I carry a laminated print out of the code in PA where it says wakesurfing is legal i knew it would do little good but showed it to him. after much talking we asked him if he could call anyone for clarification. he called his supervisor and was told to allow us to continue for the weekend but took my email and said he would let me know when they find out if it is indeed legal in Ohio.
I have to say the guy was not a jerk, he just didn't know.
it did take an hour of my day and we were only able to make one more season before dark.
anyone surf in Ohio? or on Alum lake?
other than that it was cold and fun. lots of surfing in the 62* water and 58*-65* air. good times!

10-01-2012 7:42 AM

Im from Ohio...theyre a a little behind on some things and latest trends. I think theyre just now rocking out to 50 Cent "In Da Club" thinking its the latest and greatest lol

timmyb 10-01-2012 9:55 AM

HAHAHA! Make sure you register your surfboard as a vessel! I bet you were pizzed at the time but it's kind of funny that he classified your surfboard as a vessel...

Sethjoe 10-01-2012 10:22 AM

Everyone make sure your inflatable loungers are registered!! (Stand Up Paddle Boards included)

xmcmillenx 10-01-2012 10:33 AM

im from Ohio. People wakesurf here a lot. Too much in fact! Ive heard of people being stopped about being too close to the boat, (teak surfing) but never for wakesurfing.

wakebrdjay 10-01-2012 12:01 PM

SUPs in Ohio actually do have to have a registration.Been wake surfing on Erie for 5 seasons now,never been questioned about it by division of watercraft or USCG.As a matter of fact the USCG sat and watched us for about an hour one day.Was it Ohio watercraft officer or a park ranger?

10-01-2012 12:47 PM


Originally Posted by wakebrdjay (Post 1786947)
SUPs in Ohio actually do have to have a registration.Been wake surfing on Erie for 5 seasons now,never been questioned about it by division of watercraft or USCG.As a matter of fact the USCG sat and watched us for about an hour one day.Was it Ohio watercraft officer or a park ranger?

Well thats stupid!! Im not going to register my sup!!! Other states dont do it unless its over a certain size. Glad Im in FL now.

wakebrdjay 10-01-2012 1:02 PM

That's Ohio for ya,it's ok with me they actually have used some of the cash to install some nice launch ramps in the Cleveland area on Erie.

nailem 10-01-2012 1:58 PM

it was ohio watercraft officer.
I pretty sure SUP have to be registered in PA also
I have been surfing in lake Erie off of Erie PA for a few years and have never been stopped. i also have never seen anyone else surf here, not to say no one does.
it was a funny after a few drinks but i would not have been happy if he said no more since we had planned on finishing up with a half day on sunday. it all worked out but i just cant believe he has never seen anyone surf on that lake before.

bigshow 10-01-2012 3:36 PM

I've lived in central Ohio for the last 17 years. I saw your other post about central Ohio lakes a week or so ago. Griggs and O’Shaughnessy are boat length limited, you picked the right lake. I used to own an Enzo 230. I have surfed behind my Enzo 230 on Alum before, but not often.

I just moved next to Alum Creek State Park, If I walk due East I'll end up at the Marina. My next door neighbor is the most senor Ohio Water Craft Law enforcement officer. I only moved next door three months ago. I have mentioned wakesurfing to him, he understands what wakesurfing is. However, he’s also retiring this week.

I've run about 6 wake surfing championships in Ohio including three National Championships. There’s no way that wakesurfing is illegal in Ohio.

Some New Coast Guard Laws (Not Just Ohio): “The US Coast Guard has determined that float tubes (aka "belly boats") are vessels and are required to have a Hull Identification Number (HIN). Thus float tubes must be registered under Ohio law. EXCEPTION: Float tubes with one air cell are not considered to be vessels, so they cannot be registered in Ohio.
Paddleboards are also vessels according the US Coast Guard and must be registered in Ohio, but they are not required to have a HIN.
Float tubes and paddleboards fall into the "manually propelled" vessel category with canoes and kayaks. Registrations must be carried onboard, and lifejackets must be available to every person onboard. All operating rules and lighting and safety equipment requirements that apply to manually propelled vessels apply to float tubes and paddleboards.”

Some references…


pprior 10-02-2012 6:31 AM

surf in ohio all the time (not on that lake), have never been stopped.

bigshow 10-02-2012 3:04 PM

Spoke with my neighbor today. He said that a few years back the Ohio division of watercraft checked with the Coast Guard a few years ago when they first became aware of wakesurfing. the Coast Guard siad it was OK, so the state did not add any regulations. He did say the the State Parks might have a separate regualtion and that he would check on it tomorrow. He's working a late shift tomorrow so I won't hear back for a few days.

krbaugh 10-02-2012 3:58 PM


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