Thousands of anglers are packing up their gear as they get ready to hit the lakes this weekend for the start of the fishing season.
Because of the late ice out, the water is colder than unusual for this time of year.
Minnesota Department of Natural Resources boat and water safety specialist Kara Owens is encouraging people to keep safety in mind when they hit water.
Owens says lack of life jacket use is the number one contributing factor to boating fatalities in Minnesota. Since 2010, 43 people have died in boating accidents.. 35 of those victims were not wearing life jackets.