Navigation zones for wakesurfing boats

Translation: Alexandre Hackett 

On the 14th of May last year, Renaissance Lac Brome (RLB) got in touch with its members and held its annual general meeting, attended by thirty citizens. It was an animated meeting, owing to the issue raised by our guest speaker Denise Cloutier, vice-president of Coalition Navigation: the necessity to establish new science-based, legislative norms for motorboats circulating on our waterways, including wakesurfing boats. 

A minimum distance of 300 metres from the shores for wakeboarding 

“The scientific studies done on the issue recommend that wake- boarding and wakesurfing be prohibited at less than 300 metres from the shore, and in areas that are less than seven metres deep. As to navigational conditions in general, the maximum speed should be capped at 5 km/h for boats circulating under 300 metres from the shore and where the depth is under five metres. There is an entire ecosystem to protect. A lake is not a paved road, there’s life under there!” says Cloutier. 

At present, navigational rules require all motorboats on Brome Lake within 150 metres of the shore to be limited to a speed of 10 km/h (engagement speed) – much more lax than conditions suggested by experts. 

Renaissance Lac Brome, for its part, recommends the creation of a wakesurfing and boarding zone on the northwest side of the lake that would meet the recommendations of the scientists. 

A positive record in 2021 and a name change in 2022 

In regards to our record in 2021, RLB president Hélène Drouin has highlighted the many successful accomplishments and field operations that took place despite the pandemic. It would seem however that the shore revitalisation program did not have the hoped-for success: “Many people living on the shore don’t see the need for such a program,” she says. Finally, RLB announced that a new name, more appropriate for describing our mission, will be adopted by the end of 2022. To this motion the members present, including Peter White, one of the founders of RLB, showed themselves to be very favourable. Suggestions are welcome!