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Author Topic: Has anyone heard of tickets being given for drift fishing in the channels?  (Read 3860 times)

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djkimmel

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I've heard from one person so far that one of the sheriff departments is giving out tickets to anglers in bass boats, asking if they are in tournaments, who are doing the old drift fishing in the St. Clair River channels as we have been doing for decades. Anyone else hear about this or get a ticket? If you know anything and are too shy to post, please PM me then. I'm trying to find out what is going on.
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Team houston

Re: Has anyone heard of tickets being given for drift fishing in the channels?
« Reply #1 on: September 23, 2010, 06:53:20 AM »

If you have the proper licenses what would the charge be?
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mikesmiph

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Re: Has anyone heard of tickets being given for drift fishing in the channels?
« Reply #2 on: September 23, 2010, 07:55:41 AM »

Obstructing the channel or some such stuff. It may have been the same person, but I know someone who got one of those tickets. They are saying that a boat under power should not have to maneuver around you. I could probably make some phone calls too Dan, if you want.
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LennyB

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Re: Has anyone heard of tickets being given for drift fishing in the channels?
« Reply #3 on: September 23, 2010, 09:06:59 AM »

I took a Captains License/Coast Guard class a few years back and we were taught there is a written (law) pecking order as to who has the right of way and bass boats or any small motor driven craft is at the bottom of the list.
I believe the list went something like this:
1) Military vessels (stay out of their way).
2) Working vessels (Commercial shipping, commercial fishing, tow boats when towing, dredgers)
3) Wind driven vessels (when under sail)
4) Motor powered boats (bass boats, run abouts, recreational boaters)
The only thing I could see them writing a ticket for would be if the operator failed to stay out of the way of a vessel underway that was higher up the totem pole.
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djkimmel

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Re: Has anyone heard of tickets being given for drift fishing in the channels?
« Reply #4 on: September 23, 2010, 09:10:38 PM »

Obstructing the channel or some such stuff. It may have been the same person, but I know someone who got one of those tickets. They are saying that a boat under power should not have to maneuver around you. I could probably make some phone calls too Dan, if you want.

I'm looking for another source or example, if there is one. Thanks.
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Mike S.

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Re: Has anyone heard of tickets being given for drift fishing in the channels?
« Reply #5 on: September 23, 2010, 09:57:38 PM »

I don't know about the east side, but i have heard of people being ticketed in the Muskegon channel when the ferry or a freighter comes through.  You have to get out of their way.  But, I don't personally know any of these people, so I can't say it's entirely true.  But, it does make sense.  In some cases, it could be dangerous....I guess.  Might just be patrolmen on a power trip, too.
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djkimmel

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Re: Has anyone heard of tickets being given for drift fishing in the channels?
« Reply #6 on: September 24, 2010, 12:06:52 AM »

That's what I'm thinking... you cannot legally impede traffic of large and cumbersome craft who could be damaged if caused to leave a restricted marked channel. That is meant for impeding large ships and large boats in constricted areas. It is complete bull if someone tries to say that drift-fishing in an 800 to 1200 foot wide channel is impeding any tuna boats. Complete... bull...

I've been fishing that way for decades without a ticket or even a warning. I watch the walleye guys fish the crap out of the big channels that way and I have never seen any officer of the law writing them tickets.

I debated someone on lakestclair.net over this one time who claimed to be a sheriff deputy. He said that fishing at all inside the channel markers of the St. Clair River is illegal. I told him 1) I doubt (and hope not) he is a law officer; 2) prove it by posting the regulation(s) and citing specific laws; 3) he was going to be extremely busy ticketing all the floating tuna boats, bass and walleye anglers who do this every day of most weeks of the year.

When it became apparent that the best he could do was keep saying he knew it was illegal... the debate petered out. I, of course, cited specific regulations and tried to get him to explain how they clearly showed it was illegal as he stated, and to explain the hundreds, maybe thousands of angler who do this all the time. And... what is your point?!? He didn't seem to really have one other than maybe some 'issues' with some things...

I really, really hope he wasn't really a sheriff's deputy...

If you block large boats who could be damaged if forced out of the dredged channel while fishing the Clinton River or Black Creek channel, or a narrow, constricted marina channel, you can get a ticket. That is against the law. If you are fishing one of the huge St. Clair River channels, the $$%!#$^# boats can go around without any danger. The only way you should/could ever get a ticket is if you fail to avoid a collision, cut someone off, damage someone with your wake (gee... do you think there might be some 'other' boats that could use some enforcement there??) or sit right in the middle of the way of a freighter without moving (or... run into an officer with some type of 'issue' - that has happened to me a couple times over the years... always so enjoyable, but only a couple).

MOST of the narrower areas of the St. Clair channels are NO WAKE for the larger boats anyway. Do you think maybe they could enforce that?!? I really hope I don't find out there's any truth to this being a new issue... The first thing I'll do is demand a list of tickets, names and get boat types to see if there is a 'pattern.' Has happened before...
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Help stop invasive spcies. Don't move fish between unconnected bodies of water. Clean, drain and dry your boat before launching on another water body.
Unless clearly stated as such, opinions expressed by Dan Kimmel on this forum are not the opinions or policies of The Bass Federation of Michigan.

motocross269

Re: Has anyone heard of tickets being given for drift fishing in the channels?
« Reply #7 on: September 24, 2010, 03:49:47 AM »

I don't know anything about specific regs....
Butttt....I have first hand knowledge and Mr Laporte can back me up that it is pretty obvious that the Macomb County Sherriff's Dept is specifically targeting Bass Boats for enforcement.....If you give them any indication of a violation no matter how small you can bet your last dollar that you will be cited with no warning...I have heard of guys this year getting hammered hard for power loading, No wake and questionable gear violations..(Throwables and fire extinguishers not accessible)...


I have seen those battles on LSC.net on the Channels coming out of Harley Ensign and other high traffic areas but I haven't seen much on the larger main channels from the St Clair river....If that was the case Walleye fisherman would be in for a battle...Alot of them Anchor hard in those channels and the main River and Whip....

This is the statement from the boating class I took..It is pretty wide open to interpretation...

Chapter 4: The Legal Requirements of Boating
Obstructing Navigation
Vessel operators should always be considerate of other vessel operators even when stopping to anchor or moor. Keep in mind that it is illegal to:

Operate any vessel in such a way that it will interfere unnecessarily with the safe navigation of other vessels on the waterway.
Anchor a vessel in the traveled portion of a river or channel in a way that will prevent or interfere with any other vessel passing through the same area.
Moor or attach a vessel to a buoy (other than a mooring buoy), beacon, light, or any other navigational aid placed on public waters by proper authorities.
Move, displace, tamper with, damage, or destroy any navigational aid.
Obstruct a pier, wharf, boat ramp, or access to any facility.


« Last Edit: September 24, 2010, 07:22:28 AM by motocross269 »
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MadWags

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Re: Has anyone heard of tickets being given for drift fishing in the channels?
« Reply #8 on: September 24, 2010, 09:24:09 AM »

Maybe they are reacting to the floating bass around their boats at the station. hmmm
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djkimmel

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Re: Has anyone heard of tickets being given for drift fishing in the channels?
« Reply #9 on: September 24, 2010, 01:10:27 PM »

Wonder if their sheriff would go on the record as to why they might suddenly have an 'issue' with bass boats again??

I had a couple deputies do this to me a long time ago in Anchor Bay. I was fishing shallow inside a floatilla of boats of all sizes and types. They idled throw over 30 boats to get to me in my Ranger. They spent 30 minutes going through my boat and discussing whether or not I really met all regs while all the other boats including some I wouldn't set foot in and bet didn't have proper flotation devices from the looks of it got to enjoy their day of fishing.

They ended up giving me a warning because it took me almost 4 seconds to get my throwable out. Then idled past the 30 or so boats and ran back south. I wondered if I should look for a locater beacon or something... or maybe just make my boat look more like a walleye boat...? Things have definitely been different for me a number of times since I switched from my 'harmless' little real fishing boat to a bass boat. I haven't been pestered like that in quite some time out there though. I have been hollered at a couple times idling into Harley, usually when I'm trying to get out of the way of a 'captain' in a big tuna boat who decides it's okay to ride up on my back deck.

Which is why I stress how we must be more courteous and more safe than others, and why I'm sometimes hard on persons in a bass boat who misbehave. We are painted with a broad brush. We stick out and attract attention like a red sports car. I guess it looks like we are reckless even when we are just fishing. Human bias is so much fun! ;D
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Help stop invasive spcies. Don't move fish between unconnected bodies of water. Clean, drain and dry your boat before launching on another water body.
Unless clearly stated as such, opinions expressed by Dan Kimmel on this forum are not the opinions or policies of The Bass Federation of Michigan.
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