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Discussion Starter #1
Saturday October 3rd, 4pm. Totally unofficial Waterton race.

Facebook event: https://www.facebook.com/events/987515771324114/

I've heard lots of talk about what a race would be like but never actually heard of one taking place so I'm running it :)

Mass start, no boat classes, starting line is the cable just below the put-in, must boat all rapids, takeout and run back up to the top. All carrying equipment allowed but you must boat it down with you. Wheel dollies, strap systems, etc all allowed but you have to boat them down with you. Winner is the first person back across the chain at the parking lot with all their gear.

I'm bringing beer (but if anyone has an "in" with a brewery that would like to be a sponsor let me know)

$5 suggested donation which will go to Colorado Preservation Inc to go towards saving the South Platte Hotel.
 

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Not my cup of tea, but good work organizing this. Curious to see what type of contraptions come out. Long boater with a bike on his back?

Watch out with the money; in donations can be seen as commercial by a ranger and you run the risk of being shut down or ticketed.

I'm not sure of the details on that, but maybe you could give people envelopes to mail money, but even that might run afoul of the rules.

I know they shut Buzzards down for doing this on the poudre, but the no donations Gnarrows race is tolerated, provided it draws less than (I think) 75 combined participants and spectators.

Good luck!
 

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Sounds like a Pack Raft would be the perfect boat for something like this. Have fun and report back with photos!
 

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WOW that sounds awesome, I wish I could be there but have to work. Thanks for the info on Colorado Preservation inc. (Didn't know it existed) Great cause! We were just talking 3 days ago about winning the lottery, buying, fixing up and opening that South Platte Hotel.

Maybe I will be a little sick that day...
 

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If I wan't already booked with moving I would have been there! Dang! Hope it goes well enough for there to be another one next year.
 

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I love the creativity in this. Wish I was around to play. Pleased post results and winning strategies on the Buzz.


Sent from my iPhone using Mountain Buzz
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for all the support everyone! We currently have about 10 racers definitely signed up and another 15 or so maybes. More are definitely welcome.

WOW that sounds awesome, I wish I could be there but have to work. Thanks for the info on Colorado Preservation inc. (Didn't know it existed) Great cause! We were just talking 3 days ago about winning the lottery, buying, fixing up and opening that South Platte Hotel.

Maybe I will be a little sick that day...
Unfortunately even if you did win the lottery, Denver Water won't sell. They've said they might rent it to a person with a really well thought out plan, but they're never going to sell. They want to keep the land in case they decide to pursue the Twin Forks Dam again in the future.

For those of you who don't know, in the mid 90's there was a huge fight between Denver Water and the EPA about those rivers. Denver Water wanted to build a dam right at the top of Waterton Canyon that would create a reservoir that would flood all the way past Buffalo Creek on the North Fork (all of the Foxton section) and all the way to the outskirts of Deckers (all of the Deckers section). The EPA took them to town with the environmental impact study and they came to a stalemate. They eventually agreed that Denver Water wouldn't pursue a dam for 20 years if the EPA didn't pursue making it a Wild and Scenic River for 20 years. That 20 year agreement ends this year. So Denver Water will never sell the South Platte Hotel because they don't want to have to buy it back if they decide to put a dam there.
 

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making it a Wild and Scenic River
Do they really think they can get Wild & Scenic designation for this stretch? I can think of about twenty different rivers that would qualify for that designation MUCH more than those two.....On what grounds are they trying to say it's wild and scenic? The roads that parallel both forks? The private property that exists on both forks? The graffiti that shows up from time to time at the Chutes? Don't get me wrong, I am not for the dam by any means.....But when I think of "Wild & Scenic" I don't exactly think of Deckers and Foxton.
 

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Do they really think they can get Wild & Scenic designation for this stretch? I can think of about twenty different rivers that would qualify for that designation MUCH more than those two.....On what grounds are they trying to say it's wild and scenic? The roads that parallel both forks? The private property that exists on both forks? The graffiti that shows up from time to time at the Chutes? Don't get me wrong, I am not for the dam by any means.....But when I think of "Wild & Scenic" I don't exactly think of Deckers and Foxton.
The Poudre is a Wild and Scenic River and that has a road that parallels it, lots of private property along the river and graffiti on the rocks. The wildlife along and in the South Platte there is pretty unique and honestly I think that if you go upstream on the Deckers section beyond the normal putins it gets much more "wild and scenic" and remote. The fishing in the river is pretty darn good too from what I hear.
 

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Does this apply to just the lower Waterton Canyon or all of it from top to bottom?
 

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Also, how often does the stretch from Strontia Springs down get run?
 

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There are 2 different things called Waterton Canyon. Whitewater kayakers call it the section of river from the South Platte Hotel where the two forks come together to the Strontia Springs Reservoir. Everyone else in the world calls "Waterton Canyon" the section from the reservoir down to almost Chatfield.

So that closure does not affect where we will be kayaking. Tons of people have been kayaking the whitewater section above the reservoir every day after work for the past 2 weeks. I even ran it Monday. No closures, no sign of bears (but we did see a rattlesnake on the trail).

As for kayaking the section from Strontia Springs Down, I've tried to do it as part of an epic multi-day trip from the tunnel down into downtown Denver. Every section of that trip is paddle-able except for Strontia Springs to Chatfield.

Denver Water doesn't allow kayaking in the river there. I called and asked about it and the Recreation Manager for Denver Water said that they thought that kayakers using the road would add too much foot traffic to the road they use to get vehicles to the dam. I think he's full of it but whatever. I did talk to the marketing department and they said they would let me in there to film a kayaking video if I paid $200 / hour for a temporary use permit. So I didn't do that either.

Technically they allow hiking there and technically while you're on the river not touching rocks you're not trespassing, but, the problem is that there are at least 3 mandatory portages because of minor low head dams. When you portage those you are obviously in violation and trespassing. YMMV. If anyone wants to help with a calling campaign to force the issue (or ninja it next season), let me know.
 

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lower Waterton

Pilom,

I run (on foot) the lower section of Waterton Canyon up to the dam from time to time and too have wondered about kayaking that section of river. I wonder if a bike shuttle would be possible = haul your stuff up on a trailer...Then there's the problem of getting the bike back.. = run up the road.

Interesting about the potential traffic issue given the bike and pedestrian use on the road...

I'm willing to give it a go is someone else is game.

Matt
 

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There are 2 different things called Waterton Canyon. Whitewater kayakers call it the section of river from the South Platte Hotel where the two forks come together to the Strontia Springs Reservoir. Everyone else in the world calls "Waterton Canyon" the section from the reservoir down to almost Chatfield.

So that closure does not affect where we will be kayaking. Tons of people have been kayaking the whitewater section above the reservoir every day after work for the past 2 weeks. I even ran it Monday. No closures, no sign of bears (but we did see a rattlesnake on the trail).

As for kayaking the section from Strontia Springs Down, I've tried to do it as part of an epic multi-day trip from the tunnel down into downtown Denver. Every section of that trip is paddle-able except for Strontia Springs to Chatfield.

Denver Water doesn't allow kayaking in the river there. I called and asked about it and the Recreation Manager for Denver Water said that they thought that kayakers using the road would add too much foot traffic to the road they use to get vehicles to the dam. I think he's full of it but whatever. I did talk to the marketing department and they said they would let me in there to film a kayaking video if I paid $200 / hour for a temporary use permit. So I didn't do that either.

Technically they allow hiking there and technically while you're on the river not touching rocks you're not trespassing, but, the problem is that there are at least 3 mandatory portages because of minor low head dams. When you portage those you are obviously in violation and trespassing. YMMV. If anyone wants to help with a calling campaign to force the issue (or ninja it next season), let me know.
Thanks, pilom. Very helpful! :)
 

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Pilom and Tennessee, I'm down for that section too if you ever want to try it!


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I can't see paddling the section below Strontia to be very rewarding. There's maybe 1 mile of class III and the rest is class II with a couple portages. It's not like you're poaching the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone or anything. You're risking pissing off Denver water to poach a shitty run.
 
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