Gary Lacy lead engineer and founder of Boulder, Colorado’s Recreation Engineering and Planning (REP), has seen the development and growth of Whitewater Parks since he founded his engineering firm in the early 1980’s. “In the early days,” says Lacy from his office along the Whitewater Park he built on Boulder Creek, “town planners thought we were crazy and that you should put fences around rivers to keep kids from drowning….communities just turned their backs to their rivers.”
Surfing waves in rivers is not a new phenomenon. Landlocked surfers have been surfing river waves or “standing” waves in places like the Snake River in Jackson, Wyoming or the Eisbach Canal in Munich, Germany for 20-30 years. Many other locations in North America as diverse as Montreal, Quebec or Missoula, Montana, boast thriving river surfing destinations.
Today the development of Whitewater Parks has led to an expansion of river surfing. While hardly mainstream, river surfing is now possible in places that were never previously thought of as surfing destinations. With standing waves, the wave is uniform for indefinite periods of time, meaning no battling salty locals for s...
On Saturday, Iowa’s Maquoketa River washed away Lake Delhi dam, flooding some 50 homes and 20 businesses. It’s not surprising that an 83-year-old dam broke in a flood, but it's a symptom of a bigger problem: America's aging infrastructure.
The average age of America’s 86,000 dams is 51, and the estimated price to repair just the high-hazard dams, or those near homes, is a staggering $16 billion. Don’t expect that investment to be made anytime soon (things like wars and unruly banks are demanding more of Washington’s attention), but until it is, more dams will break.
One solution rightly being championed by enviros-- American Whitewater, Save Our Wild Salmon, American Rivers--is to purge old an...
SALIDA — While the raging runoff of many Colorado rivers has sent several residents scurrying for higher ground in recent weeks, the blast of snowmelt swell has had the opposite effect on big-water wave hunters in the state.
Near-record river flows that appeared like a surging tide almost overnight have combined with an assortment of new man-made whitewater "wave features" to create a freshwater surfer's dream.
I’d been in downtown Reno for no more than 15 minutes when I saw world freestyle champion Eric Jackson shouting encouragement to his 16-year-old daughter, Emily, as she was throwing down in the whitewater park.
After eight years of planning, prodding and praying, on May 7, paddlers in Pueblo, Colorado, will formally open their new downtown kayak park.
The Pueblo whitewater park, which has not yet been formally named, is part of a larger renovation along the city’s riverfront. It consists of eight drops separated by large pools over hafl a mile. Workers finished constructing the kayak park in mid-March and kayakers were testing the waves before the dust settled.