Gore Creek sees resurgence heading into final race of Vail Whitewater Series

Vail Whitewater Series wraps up on Tuesday

VAIL – Local rafters and stand-up paddleboarders returned to Gore Creek over the weekend following a recent dip in water levels.

Some were declaring the local whitewater season to be over last week as Gore Creek levels lowered to a trickle following Tuesday’s snow storm. The gauge at the Eagle River Water and Sanitation District site was measuring a flow of about 350 cubic feet per second during the prime afternoon hours on Thursday and Friday; for good conditions on Gore Creek, you want to see that reading at 600 cfs or above.

By Saturday evening, however, the gauge had jumped back above 500 cfs, and local rafters and stand-up paddleboarders were taking to Gore Creek via the newly redesigned access point near the East Vail Interchange Trailhead parking area.


At midnight on Sunday, the levels had jumped back above 700 cfs for the first time since June 8, making conditions promising heading into the Vail Recreation District’s final race of the season on Gore Creek, scheduled for Tuesday evening.

Crowd controls required

While the races have been capped at 30 competitors, spectators can still come and enjoy the action.

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Due to the excitement over last week’s races, however, crowds will be asked to watch from areas along the river, rather than the finish coral.

Spectators are encouraged to wear masks and observe physical distancing requirements. Because the gathering limit at the finish area was exceeded in week two, the finish area around the whitewater park will be fenced off and controls on the number of spectators in that area will be enforced, with each racer receiving one guest spot in the VIP viewing area.

Spectators can watch from many other areas, however, between the Covered Bridge — where the race will begin — and the finish area near the International Bridge.

The races will consist of kayak and stand-up paddleboard categories. There will be two individual time trial runs down the creek starting at the Covered Bridge and ending at International Bridge, with multiple challenges along the route that must be completed. The combined times of the two runs will determine placing.

The kayak races begin at 5:15 p.m. on Tuesday and the stand-up paddleboard races are scheduled to start at 6:15 p.m.

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