OUR MISSION: Make the Muskoka lakes safer and quieter to ensure the sustainable enjoyment of a treasured shared resource
Chair’s Message

Thank you to everyone who participated in our 2021 Your Lakes, Your Views survey! We are thrilled to report that close to 6,000 community members responded, making it one of the largest lake activity reports in North America. This huge participation tells us that the lake community is deeply engaged with boating issues. Our 2021 survey is in partnership with over 40 lake associations along with Erin Research and the Marketing Research and Business Intelligence program of Algonquin College.

The scale and scope of this survey is immense and covers trends over the past 8 years. The insights from these responses were launched at our Annual Stakeholder meeting in October and will be used by local and federal governments and by lake associations as a basis for developing programs and strategies. For us they support what we have been doing and informs our next priorities.

The results from the survey will help us work together for safer and quieter lakes. They will drive our programs and help us to advocate on behalf of lake users in our region. The main concerns have been consistent over our three surveys: wakes, noise and speed. However, the trend data for the three large Muskoka lakes shows that these concerns are growing. Most prominently, there has been an increase in support for more education about responsible boating, and enhanced regulations and enforcement

A large increase in the use of paddle boards (up 33%) and kayaking (up 16%) is strongly correlated with evolving views on education, regulation and enforcement. Paddling brings a unique appreciation of risk and vulnerability and this decreased sense of safety and on larger lakes has increased openness to regulation and enforcement. There was 71% support for no wake zones to protect people and nature, 70% support for stronger enforcement of boating while under the influence, and 67% support for establishing decibel limits on noise made by boats. Only 18% say no need for additional enforcements (down by 33%).

The research report has eight practical recommendations. You can read the summary and full report here. Safe Quiet Lakes is actively working on plans to lead this change.

Thank you again to our stakeholder partners, donors and those who contributed your thoughts to our survey. Please feel free to contact me if you would like more information or have some additional ideas that you would like to discuss.

Diana Piquette
Chair, Safe Quiet Lakes
Safe Quiet Lakes is dedicated to making Muskoka’s waterways safer and quieter.  
We build partnerships to encourage conversations about respectful boating and to lead change through education and advocacy. We are a not-for-profit community group run by an active volunteer board and one Administrative Coordinator. Support is received from lakefront residents, municipalities, lake associations and marinas across Muskoka. At this time of year, we are actively planning for next summer, your generous contribution helps us to expand our reach and impact.
Your donation will help drive programs to address issues highlighted in our current survey results.   
Donations can be made online here or you can mail a cheque with the this form.
Wakes and Speed Update
As the lakes freeze over and the wakes dissipate across the region, we thought that we’d give you an update on some of the works our Wakes and Speed Committee undertook last spring and summer.

Over 200 of the No Wake signs were deployed in Muskoka and beyond. Thank you to those who purchased placed and provided feedback. We received many positive comments that these signs helped in some places and were less effective in others. We will offer the signs next year and will continue to improve our messaging and outreach.

With the support of the MLA we were able to place a more advanced Radar sign in the Foreman Narrows near Port Carling. Year over year data suggests that 20% less boats travelled by the Radar sign faster than the 9km speed limit compared to Summer 2020. This is an amazing result and hope the ongoing use of radar on the lakes will help boaters realize how slow 9km really is. 

We released our #BeWakeAware.com campaign and video in partnership with FOCA and the MLA to educate those participating in tow sports to stay well away from shore. The video was disseminated across many regions of Ontario and to date has well over 6,000 views.
If you haven’t seen it check it out here and please share widely.

We will keep working with our partners to continue to raise awareness of the negative impacts of wakes in the wrong places, and help everyone to share our glorious lakes. We know from our surveys it is a key issue for so many. We look forward to your support in 2022!
About Us
About Safe Quiet Lakes

Safe Quiet Lakes is a not-for-profit community group of boaters that promote safe, respectful boating.

We believe that positive, grass root conversations and education are important drivers of change. We created the Boater’s Code to help get the conversation started. 
Please click the image to watch a video about our programs.
Our Sponsors