Glenwood Springs Whitewater Park making waves
Glenwood Springs Correspondent
Vail, CO Colorado
GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado – The Glenwood Springs Whitewater Park is making national waves and just appeared in National Geographic Adventure magazine.
The whitewater park turned up in the September issue of the magazine in a section called “Next Weekend: Instant Adventures.” It went out earlier this month.
“Thanks to a new million dollar whitewater park, paddlers are guaranteed a standing wave in the heart of town almost any day of the year. ‘Super sick’ is how kayakers are extolling Glenwood Springs Whitewater Park’s main feature, an eight foot high crest,” the magazine says. “It’s a brilliant venue for anyone’s arsenal of playboating tricks, be they spins, blunts or McNasties.”
Jason Carey, of http://www.RiverRestoration. org, said, “This is national press – so I think it’s fantastic.” His company designed Glenwood’s park.
The park created a buzz when flows on the Colorado River began increasing early this season and people were able to use it for the first time. Local whitewater park enthusiasts worked for about seven years to build the $888,838 park.
Fans have said the park is one of the best standing waves around – anywhere.
Carey said he believes the park has appeared in all the kayaking magazines, but National Geographic Adventure is probably the largest publication that’s cast its eye on the park yet. The magazine’s website says it has more than 1.7 million readers, and it had a paid circulation of 506,835 in 2005.
The park could get a lot more attention next year. The United States Freestyle Kayaking Association announced in April that the Glenwood Springs Whitewater Park was awarded the 2009 U.S. Kayak Freestyle Team Trials. The trials determine who goes to the 2009 world championships.
“It’ll be the biggest kayaking event in the nation,” Carey said.
The park is also expected to help promote tourism. Carey said his company has talked to the mayor of Reno, Nev., about a whitewater park there.
“He figures it gives his city a half million a year in free advertising because it generates so much press,” Carey said.
Carey said Glenwood’s whitewater park is unique because it’s one of the few parks around that creates an actual wave that boaters and even surfers can hydroplane on. Most parks are more of a hole rather than a wave. The holes are caused by a “pour over” of water rather than constricting the river to get the water’s speed up, Carey said.
“The ultimate goal and the reason that Glenwood was awarded the nationals and no other town in Colorado was is because it does create a wave,” Carey said. “The waves are really rare, but that’s the ultimate goal of freestyle kayaking.”
He said kayakers can do lots more tricks on a wave compared to a hole.
The whitewater park wasn’t the only local attraction in this issue of National Geographic Adventure. The town of Carbondale made the cover of the magazine and was among the top ranks in a section called “Where to Live and Play Now: The 50 Next Great Towns.”
In a description of the town, its environmentalism and its great nearby recreational opportunities, the magazine says, “It’s forging its own identity as a self-sustaining base for Patagonia-clad Ph.Ds happy to stay close to home in the White River National Forest.”
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