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Old 10-19-2010   #101
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2004
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 3,097
Nice post twitch.

I can understand why lawson regulars are upset at losing the hole.

Insults, name calling, and mud slinging against the designers and their staff isn't going to help your cause though. "You will catch more flies with honey than vinegar" comes to mind.

The county and the park designers or another designer will need to be part of fixing the lawson hole. If you approach any of them with a negative attitude, insults, and act like a pain in the butt, you are diging the lawson hole grave even deeper, and they will likely simply blow you off. No one wants to work with folks with a negative and antagonistic attitude, especially if they aren't directly paying the bills.

If on the other hand, you seek positive solutions, work positively with people, demonstrate how much the hole means to regulars and try to find a workable solution, you may get some traction. Its up to you.

I'm constantly amazed that people think being louder, meaner, or more of an A-hole will somehow win people over and get things done. My experience is the exact opposite. In situations where you need other people to do things to help you out and you need to influence them to get things done, I have found that a dimplomatic, positive and collaborative attitude works best. Figure out the solution. Figure out who needs to do what. Be a positive force for change. And by all means, don't be a dickhead to the people that are going to get it done for you.

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Old 10-19-2010   #102
lookout mnt., Colorado
Paddling Since: 1989
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 148
Originally Posted by twitch View Post
A couple of points I'd like to hit.

1. I don't feel it's appropriate to be questioning another man's right to earn a living for he and his family. In this particular case, Shane has acted as the public face for a company, and by association we collectively deem him guilty of crimes against humanity. Justly deserved or not, none of us have the right to make that assertion without all the facts.
In my last post my words posed the question of "Would you allow Shane a second chance and allow him to manage a new or improvement project at your local WW park?" My intention was to stimulate constructive conversation around this topic. My words following this question were barbed and ill advised and for that I am solely accountable as I crossed a line that throughout this thread I'd delicately toed.

2. WW park construction is not solely about freestyle kayaking. There are other entities involved, who often know nothing of in-stream recreation beyond the bottom line. If the WW community wants their voice to be heard and their concerns to be taken as credible, then they must be involved in the process. In this particular case, I really have no comprehension how it got to the point it did - with the actual construction plans involving potential changes to something so good - without whitewater kayakers voicing a strong opinion against it. The bottom line is that it did, and I'd hope that in the future all entities involved - including the engineers - seek out public / WW opinion. Much as the case is with Swiftwater Rescue, I feel those that play and practice in this environment every day have a better understanding and ability to forsee potential changes than those pulling the triggers.

3. WW park construction is not a science. The individuals involved in building these parks are pioneering a new field which, as evidenced by other locations, often takes a bit of trial and error before it's gotten right. Engineering degree or no, there are a lot of factors that go into getting it right and I'd argue that even those involved still have differing opinions on what makes it work or not work. In most of these ww parks, additional budgets have been built in for "maintenance" after initial construction has been completed. Shane promised that they'd come back and fix the features if they didn't work. He's been true to his word as work has been done in an effort to fix what wasn't working. I believe that as a paddler who understands the concerns of this community, and as a professional who's in the business of engineering WW parks, he'll continue this effort until it's as good as it can be within reason. (sorry Reed, no time machine)

4. "We are not touching the "Lawson Hole" and have no intention of changing that feature."
If you were a lawyer, and this went to trial, you'd mince that statement up to prove that the words stated are in fact true. I'll let others debate the semantics of "touch", "contact", "Lawson Hole", "intention", and other such big words - but some would argue that the actual hole was never physically touched and there certainly was no intent to change the just happened. While engineers who, by my estimation, should have the experience and knowledge to know better went ahead with the plans - the WW community accurately predicted the outcome before the physical changes were ever effected. This debate is as sticky as recreational access issues in CO, have fun.
In my eyes, they went ahead with the plan because of two factors:
1. It's what Clear Creek County told them they wanted
2. They felt as though through "maintenance" that the overall improvements to the park would outweigh any potential disruption to the Lawson Hole.

The intention of the Lawson WW Park was to create a connection point for the Clear Creek Greenbelt as well as to create in stream improvements that would attract recreational users to the area and better facilitate existing activities. Rafting is one of those other activities and now there is a nice ramp to a nice put-in, with a pull in drop off point in the lot and a new bridge to facilitate rubber traffic heading downstream. It's clearly evident that Clear Creek County found this to be a priority rather than protecting the the integrity of the original Lawson Hole. It's too bad they didn't hear these concerns and alter the plans to make the boat ramp terminate below the existing feature. In a small community like Clear Creek County, who admittedly wants to attract people to the area through these parks and their amenities, I think they should seek out core users for input and engineering firms could help facilitate this.
I'm very confident that Shane along with his colleagues will be back up there to do more Maintenance until they, or Kaleb , feels that the hole is back to being close to what it was - or better. So when it gets to that point, enjoy the rafts putting in just above you and don't forget to wave at the passengers as you wait in the eddy to access the hole.
wow, that's a bit of a 180. mike c/catura

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Old 12-13-2010   #103
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Lakewood, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2009
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 27
Sorry late for the discussion

So I'm a beginner kayaker (2 years) looking at playboating as my goal this upcoming season. I'm also new to the Denver area I have been researching the area to find the best places to put myself through the numbers of learning a new aspect of the sport. What I have found is I like Golden because I got confident in my boat there and can grab a beer at GCB afterwards. However even as a beginner I find only two spots are worth attempting anything this is bad if a newbie can't even find a decent place to play. I stumbled across an online thread about Lawson whole being a great place and figured I'd drive up there and check it out maybe this upcoming season it would be worth another trip. I found a very small park that looked ok but crammed together, way out of the way of anything (where do I go for a beer after paddling?) and really close to a rafting company. I came home and found this thread and will likely not bother going back. It sounds like it is a waste of a great gathering point for playboaters in an attempt to boast tourism for the rafting company and town. I agree with the threads about building in Idaho Springs because you would have Lawson hole still attracting the boaters and the park in Idaho springs attracting individuals like myself not ever having found such a long negative post online keeping me away from the park. The paddlers lost their spot and the city/county sounds like they'll lose more money. Hopefully this gets resolved because I'd like to paddle with people better than me who can show me a thing or two not go to an abandoned play park and swim because it wasn't built right and I didn't know any better. Just thought it I'd chime in I was excited to find this spot until I read about it and realized its not worth the drive.
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Old 12-13-2010   #104
Lakewood, Colorado
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 504
It's still very much worth the drive. You just want to head on downstream immediately now and enjoy the nice new bridge.
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Old 06-03-2011   #105
The next zone, .
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 1,200
So is it working now??

As I said earlier in this thread - a good river park will take take time and effort year after year to keep it up. It looks like REP came in and made good.

Great to see that you guys now have a working feature and props to REP to get in there and make it right..

Looks like it may be time for a few folks to eat a bit of crow and realize building kayak parks is a process.........
"I feel better than any other time when I am in the mountains and uh I cant explain it ya know...." - Shawn Farmer..........
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Old 06-03-2011   #106
I kayak DH.
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Greater tri cities metro area, Colorado
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 794
Crow tastes good as long as it's followed by a nice big poppy loop!

We've always known that building a park takes time, the only reason for the nastiness was the promise that they wouldn't mess up the one hole there that worked very well, and they did EXACTLY that without creating any other good features.

As for the rest of it, I don't think they changed anything to make it work better (that process you mention) but I'm curious to see if there were some changes that we didn't notice. Gonna have to swing over there & check it out to see how it is.

No river heater though... how could they have missed that in the design process???

If the only thing that comes of this is lawson hole being back, and some nice landscaping... then all is well in the universe. 99% of us could care less about the other features.

So... anybody got any good recipes for crow?
Discover Denver, stay there!
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Old 06-03-2011   #107
Shit Creek, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 277
Gut your crow. You can decide to pluck or not. The feathers and parts make good ruffage to keep you regular if you chew em up real good. If not, you get to come see me in the ER with a ruptured bowel. Then you should marinate your crow in Kentucky Beau (nastiest bourbon ever, if you dare call it bourbon) then cook it in tinfoil on top of your engine in that POS boater car you drive. Other seasonings to taste.
WWPR, I do wish that we had more than 1 decent feature for the $ that was spent. Still trying to figure out the fancy bathrooms instead of a porta-crapper kinda like the Rodeo put-in/TO. But, we will be able to easily get a raft to the hole and try to get some flat spins in a 12' raft. All in all, the easy access with the nice paved trail is really sweet. Maybe we can convince the county to increase parking on the west end of the area if we get enough people up there this year.
Speak of Peace, (but carry a big gun)
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Old 06-03-2011   #108
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Posts: 505
I don't know about this eating crow bit in this case considering that they weren't starting from scratch. They started with a perfect feature and degraded it. Now, they have worked to correct their mistake, as they should. If someone took a shit in my living room and then cleaned it up, I wouldn't say, ''You fucked up, man, but you made up for it!''
Grif for President!
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Old 06-03-2011   #109
I kayak DH.
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Greater tri cities metro area, Colorado
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 794
Originally Posted by deepstroke View Post
I don't know about this eating crow bit in this case considering that they weren't starting from scratch. They started with a perfect feature and degraded it. Now, they have worked to correct their mistake, as they should. If someone took a shit in my living room and then cleaned it up, I wouldn't say, ''You fucked up, man, but you made up for it!''
Agreed, and exactly my point, but I'm still stoked that they did get back in there & make it right. It doesn't give them hero of the year award, but imo it brings them up a couple notches from what I had thought of them.

ph76... thanks for the recipe!

btw... the fact that the raft putin is above the hole, and the other holes not working... keep them down a few notches still... but whatever, you get brain freeze pretty quick in there anyhow, so a break is needed!!
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Old 06-03-2011   #110
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Knife Fork of the Spoon Paddling Since: 1984
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Posts: 365
Nice work Shane and REP. Now lets see what it looks like at 2000

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