Gore Creek (Vail Whitewater Park)
|Stretch:||Vail Whitewater Park|
|Difficulty:||Class II to II+|
|Flows:||~350 to ~700 cfs. USGS Gore Creek near mouth at Minturn gauge|
|Access:||Vale Village Parking Garage / International Bridge|
|Shuttle:||0.3 mile walk through Vail|
|Season:||Year-round dam release|
Colorado Road Trip 2021: Day 12 Morning
The home of the GoPro Mountain Games, I was honestly surprised at how small this park is. For starters, it is in the middle of the Vail Village, meaning there is no parking, you have to park in a parking garage and the feature is surrounded by shops and restaurants that are out of my price range. Secondly, it is a single wave in a small creek. This year the Mountain Games were held on 350 cfs. When we put in here for a long day down onto the Eagle River we had 525 cfs, and even at that flow the feature was shallow. But, I guess it is deep enough as the pro boaters throw all sorts of stuff in this feature. We were in creek boats for our long day and we were "throwing" flat spins. It is a nice feature, don't get me wrong. But I think it is more of a life style thing and the life style is different than most river days. For my money, I bet on a normal day the not far downstream Avon Whitewater Park on the Eagle would give you better surfs with less of a monkey in a zoo vibe.
We had a shuttle driver for our day starting here and going to the town of Edwards about 15 miles downstream on the Eagle River. For that reason we were able to park in residential and quickly unload and walk the 200 yards to the feature. Otherwise, use the parking garages in the town center.
- Vail Whitewater Park. Make sure to google "Vail Mountain Games" to see what it looks like at its yearly competition and see what the best playboaters can do in this feature.
Parking: Take I-70 east towards Vail. In town, take exit 176. Continue east on S Frontage Rd for 0.2 miles the Vail Village Parking structure.
River Access: It is about a quarter mile walk from the garage to the river. The feature is located immediately upstream of the "International Bridge" which is on Willow Bridge Rd.
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