Registering boat in Minnesota

Is it possible to register a canoe somewhere in Minnesota in person?

I am having trouble trying to register my unmotored canoe in Maine.

We register vehicles at Town Hall and they have never heard of registering an unmotored canoe…so they wont do it.

What are these state goverments up to $$$$. Here in Connecticut you only have to register my canoe because I put an electric motor on it. Again some states let you use that canoe that is registered for about 30 days while visiting that state. Check the Motor vechile laws for that state on-line. Good LUck Happy paddling

No 30 day grace period
For over 30 years, Minnesota law has required canoe / kayak registration either in the state of residence (for non-residents) or in Minnesota (for residents or as an option for non-residents) to legally paddle on Minnesota public waters. I’m not promoting that this is good or bad, and I certainly have some beefs with the current law when it come to multiple boat ownership and a ridiculous antiquated substantially increased fee based on paddle boats 19’ and over. However the number of boat registrations in a state helps determines how much Federal grant money a State receives for public water access procurement and development. And in a state with a lot of water resources, there is a real need for substantial funds ear-marked for water access. There are direct benefits to paddlers in this state with walk-in access, paddling water route, and water route campsite development and maintenance. Indirectly the usual boat accesses funded by these dollars also benefits paddlers by assuring that the body of water remains open for public use.


– Last Updated: Jul-15-08 9:22 AM EST –

" ....... in Ely where they have a small office that only does recreational registrations (boats not cars) so it's easy and fast. Location was 118 SOUTH 4TH AVENUE EAST in Ely, but since the USFS just moved out of that building maybe the registration office has too, so I'd call them at 218-365-6262 to confirm. Hours should be M-F 8:00-11:30 & 12:00-4:30. "

If the Maine registration is cheaper than the MN $24/3yr deal, just tell the people at the town hall that you are going to put a motor on your canoe, and therefore need to register it.

For current list:

Click: DNR license agents

Enter St. Louis County for the Ely area, Cook or Lake County for the Grand Marais/Gunflint area

scroll the list down to the town you want

Have Registered in Ely in Person
I’m from MO and when I used to frequent the BWCAW I found it was cheaper and easier to register in MN. Also didn’t need to put those big, ugly letters and numbers on the boat. I did this by mail all but twice; two times I picked boats up at Piragis and used the friendly folks in the Ely License Bureau. As I recall, the office was about the size of a large doghouse (LOL), but it was fast, easy, and the people were very cordial. WW

Just tell them you WILL use a motor

– Last Updated: Aug-04-08 12:34 PM EST –

Then they will register the boat in Maine and you can save the hassle and keep your money in your home state where it belongs! (I don't agree with Minnesota's rule that people from states where registration isn't required must register their boats just to paddle there. Why don't they just tax tourists at the border too?)

We do
It’s called a sales tax. All who enter must pay and pay and…

in Maine its called excise tax
Plus registration and Minnesota looks like a bargain.

Excise tax is based on your mill rate so if you are in a high mill rate community…beware