Michigan Windsurfing

Windsurfing & Stand-Up Paddleboarding in Michigan

Windsurfing at Marysville Beach, MI and US/Canada border crossing

Looks like a good South wind for tomorrow November 10, 2012 and was thinking windsurfing at Marysville beach. Looks like the river is 1/2 mile wide at the beach from US shore to Canada shore. My question: Is there an easy way to stay on the US side, ex. channel markers? I assume if you cross the US/Canada border you are technically required to call Canada and when you return 1 minute later after a jibe, you would be required check back in with the US. Curious on anyone’s experience windsurfing at Marysville.

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Carry your passport in a waterproof bag.

I've only been there a few times but I never even thought about bringing a passport.

It seems canadian Customs are prety lax for the most part, On the other hand, after 911 American homeland security has become very vigilant and a force to be reconed with beyond a doubt. Why I am not sure, they can see we are only windsurfers enjoying our fabulous sport and not terrorists, however in their eyes everyone is suspect. I would caution you to be very carefull as the attittude towards us can change in an instant. Most of the time the border crossing guards were very friendly but on a bad day, or if you say the wrong thing you could cause a change of heart in seconds that couild land you in a heap of trouble and doing a lot of explaining to deaf ears. I think in your case you might make an off the cuff call to customs, explain the situation and see what the reponse might be, and oh yeah get the name of the person you talked to if his response is positve.

We used to sail pre-911 from our shore to yours at the Coast Guard station on Belle Isle in the Detroit River, all the time, however the events of 911, and constructuion of the Casino Windsor, the Ren-Cen and other tall buildings has changed the wind pattern to the point where it is hardly worth the risk anymore, although when the wind is just right I do have some very strong urges to just go for a few runs. But jail time is not in my forte, so I stay away.

On another note how was Marysville yesterday?? Metro domed out I think, I got two good runs on a 7.5 there yesterday, far cry from the 20 gusting 30 called for!


Sorry about your session.  The wind at Metro never gets down to the water on a S when the air is warm and the water cold.  About 9-10 WS'ers showed up at Marysville.  It was gusty, so you schlogged sometimes and wooo-hoooed other times.  The average sail size might have been about a 5.5.  I little lighter than expected.

Several Homeland Security trucks passed by but no real interest by them.  I've never brought a passport, but It would be a good idea in case anyone gets to the other side and needs a rescue I guess.

Yes, again pre 911 sailing the river we had several people have breakdowns and were helped out by your coastguard, brought home intact no questions asked. One guy sailed over just as a big storm hit, he waited it out but the wind switched after the storm to totally North making it impossible for him to get back to Windsor owing to the current and wind shadow, just as we were getting ready to go over via the tunnel to Belle Isle to pick him up he showed up with the American Coast Gurad on an inflatable, another time he blew out the clew grommet on his sail over there and they brought him home a second time. Wish I knew if they would be that friendly now, we also one time had the Ontario Provincail Police sail up to us in their boat and tell us we were a shipping hazzard and to get off the River! Which we didn't oblige, and nothing came of it!


I never heard of kiters or windsurfers having issues with the border patrol.

I say this as I observed a US border agent yesterday in his well mark vehicle sitting in the fishing pier parking lot, about 40 yards north of the launch.  I'm sure he was aware of us going  across the river and probably keeping an eye out for suspicious activity?

Don't know, but think you windsurfing people look awefull suspicious in those all black waterproof suits!

Thanks for the info. I also learned that when on Canada’s side, you should have an approved PFD. Some windsurfers will purchase the CO2 inflatable vests and store them in a backpack which they wear during windsurfing. It appears that as long as you do not touch Canada's soil, it should be okay to windsurf back and forth across the US/Canada border (Black River) from Marysville Beach.

I skipped Marysville and went to Sterling State Park to experience the dome effect. Best wind was near shore where the water was probably warmer from the River Raisin. Sailed 7.5, 8.5 and 9.5 sails but then I usually sail 1 to 2 sizes higher than the average sailor (200+ lbs).


Yikes Jim, should have come to Marysville.  I'm also 200+ and I was on a 5.8m2 and 105L.  I did schlog some, but also had some wooo-hooo moments.

Way to go Brian!!! 5.9 and 105 !! Wish we would have made the extra effort!

We were told the same,,  "as long as you don't touch the shore"

Again we wear PFD"S because of the law but believe me when it comes to waterstarting a 7.5 + a PFD is a benefit!



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