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If You Are Bringing Watercraft to Whitefish Lake

Help us prevent aquatic invasive species

The pristine water of Whitefish Lake could be in jeopardy if unwanted non-native plants or animals are introduced. Aquatic invasive plants like flowering rush, Eurasian watermilfoil, and curlyleaf pondweed have been introduced to Montana. They are impeding recreation, clogging irrigation systems, and destroying water quality for fish and other wildlife. Once these plants are introduced to a water body, they are nearly impossible to eradicate. In 2016, zebra mussels were found in Montana waters east of the Continental Divide. The rapid spread of these mussels in U.S. water bodies shows how profoundly Aquatic Invasive Species can alter the environment.

All motorized or non-motorized watercraft users MUST stop at all watercraft inspection stations throughout Montana. Watercraft users can be cited for driving past an inspection station.

In Whitefish, all watercraft must be inspected prior to launching in Whitefish Lake. There is no fee for inspections and users can request and exit seal to relaunch in the lake without need for another inspection.

Watercraft must be decontaminated prior to launching in Whitefish Lake if:
- contains ballast tanks or bags
- has standing water
- have been in a mussel infested waterway in the last 30 days
- watercraft that is deemed too dirty to inspect

More About this Area: Whitefish City Beach Inspection Station: May 5am-9pm June & July 5am-10pm Aug 5am-9pm Sept 6am-9pm Whitefish Lake State Park Inspection Station May-September 7am-10pm Non-Motorized Hand-Launched Watercraft Stickers may launch at City Beach and Whitefish Lake State Park throughout the year after completing the online AIS self-certification program and demonstrating via test that they have acquired the appropriate knowledge. Find the Online certification at or Decontamination Station - Whitefish Marine & Powersports May 1 - Jun 15 9am-5pm June 16- Aug 15 9am-8pm Aug 16-Sept 30 9am-5pm
Restrictions: See the attached PDF for full regulations and restrictions or visit