In Colorado, it gets hot in the summer. Luckily for locals, we have some wonderful rivers to float and escape the heat. Here are 4 of my favorite rivers for floating and tubing near Denver!
1. Clear Creek, Golden
The Clear Creek Whitewater Park is the place to go for a thrilling float and tubing. Situated between Lions Park and Vanover Park, the quarter-mile river section features artificial rapids for whitewater kayaking. The Clear Creek Whitewater Park has paths along the creek, so you can walk upstream and drop in at any part of the river that suits you. Often, people jump out when they float down to the baseball field.
Being a shorter float, you can walk upstream and float as many times as you like. With the rapid sections and cold, fast-moving water, this is no place for a lazy river float! But if you are up for the challenge, rent tubes from Adventure West or Golden River Sports.
2. South Platte River, Littleton
The South Platte River runs from the south through the heart of Littleton. It’s the best place to visit if you’re looking for a whitewater adventure close to home. Featuring shaded picnic spots, skyline views, and rapids, the South Platte River is the perfect spot for afternoon fun.
The river is surrounded by the park, benches, walking paths, and a nearby skatepark that offer a great view of Denver’s skyline. Undoubtedly, it’s the best place to set a picnic and cool off with a quick float. There are many launch areas along the river with floats that can take a few minutes to several hours.
It takes about 4 hours to float to Brent Mayne Baseball Field. You can always stop for a bite around Prince Street bridge. Conversely, you can stop and dry up at Reynolds Landing for a shorter float, then head to the Breckenridge Brewery.
3. St. Vrain Creek, Lyons
Tubing the St. Vrain Creek is one of the best activities in this mountain town. Like Clear Creek, it offers exciting waves in a picturesque spot. The park boasts red sandstone cliffs, and you might see some Golden Eagles that call it home.
You can head to Ray’s River Rentals, located along the river in LaVern M. Johnson Park. From here, float your way to Black Bear Hole, then take a 15-minute walk to the top of the route. You can float the spot several times, then end your afternoon with a picnic lunch at the park.
Snowmelt in the area usually results in high water levels, so the river can be closed for tubing for part of the year but usually opens around the first weeks of June. Be sure to check local guidelines before hitting the waters.
4. Boulder Creek, Boulder
Boulder Creek is a popular spot that offers several opportunities to go outdoors and explore the town’s highlights. Dubbed one of the laziest rivers in the U.S. by Men’s Journal, the site is a local and national favorite. The river features a few rapids and deeps to keep you on your toes.
The short float starts at the canyon and ends under the bridge of Boulder Public Library, while longer routes go past the CU Boulder and stop at Scott Carpenter Park. You can visit the Farmers Market on Saturdays and the late hours on Wednesday.
With several shaded spots, the relaxing and fun experience conveniently ends in the city for drinks and lunch. Despite the root you take, you can expect lazy sectional and fun drops with other floaters keeping you company.
Safety Tips for Your Float
You must be well prepared when planning to head out for fun adventures in Denver’s rivers. Ensure you:
- Confirm the water levels
- Hit the waters before noon
- Plan your exit
- Check the weather
- Check with local guidelines
Also, bring essentials like water shoes, a dry bag, sunscreen, and water. You can also bring your own tube and life jacket if you don’t plan on renting.
If you’re looking for a property close to rivers, outdoor recreation, and more don’t hesitate to reach out to Denver Dyllan to help you in your real estate journey.