EAGLE — Timberline Tours, the valley’s oldest whitewater outfitter, has begun offering the area’s only still-water, stand-up paddleboard tours at Sylvan Lake State Park, south of Eagle.
“This is the perfect location to introduce people to this fantastic sport,” said Timberline Tours owner Greg Kelchner. “The pristine location up the Brush Creek Valley, near the foot of the Sawatch Mountain Range, offers an amazing backdrop for a day on the water.”
According to lead stand-up paddle guide Kristy Madill, the learner-friendly factor of Sylvan Lake was a big factor in seeking the permit for location.
“Still-water paddling will be much more conducive to learning and developing confidence … it’s really quite relaxing. Plus the special beginners equipment we’ve acquired is perfect for learning — very stable and very easy to navigate,” she said.
Stand-up paddle tours will take place daily in the morning, to ensure minimal wind and to avoid the weather that often comes with summer afternoons in the high country. The cost is $150 per person and includes transportation, all equipment, including wetsuit, life jacket and booties, plus a picnic lunch. Timberline Tours will pick up guests at their hotel at around 8 a.m. and return at approximately 12:30 p.m., leaving plenty of time for other vacation activities.
After pickup, guests will be taken to the Timberline Tours boathouse where they will be fitted with their gear. Groups will then be taken by Jeep for a scenic ride up Brush Creek to Sylvan Lake where they will receive board orientation and basic skills before launching for a tour around the lake. Groups will usually consist of four guests to one guide.
Plan on bringing personal swimwear, water shoes, sunglasses, hat and sunblock. A light jacket and change of clothes are optional. Waterproof cameras are a must for capturing some of the most incredible scenery in the region and the memories of the moment.
“I’ve been following the ‘endless summer’ for almost 20 years, guiding on oceans and rivers big and small in both hemispheres, and this is some of the most fun I’ve had,” Madill said. “We’re all pretty excited to open up this fantastic sport to more people. It’s a magnificent location, and they even get a lovely Jeep ride.”
For more information or to make reservations, call 970-476-1414 or go to www.timberlinetours.com.