Though the high waters forced Lyons and Boulder County to close the St. Vrain River to tubers, there are no such restrictions within Longmont city limits, allowing the planned stand-up paddle board and tube race through the new floating course at Dickens Farm Nature Area to go on as planned Thursday.
In an email to Gary Lacy, whose Boulder-based company, Recreation Engineering and Planning, designed the course, Boulder County Sheriff Joe Pelle said the tubing ban applies in unincorporated areas of the county, and Longmont has the authority to control what happens in town. The ban, Pelle wrote, was requested by the town of Lyons after several water rescues in the last two weeks.
While water levels in the St. Vrain River have dropped roughly a foot and 600 cubic feet per second since the peak on Friday, Carrie Haverfield, a spokeswoman with the Boulder County Sheriff’s Office, said there are no plans to lift the tubing restrictions any time soon as the department expects water levels to rise again with the hot temperatures forecast this week.
In anticipation of rainstorms last weekend, Longmont Park Operations on Friday closed 12 underpasses throughout the city. While only three remain closed — the St. Vrain Greenway at Boston Avenue, the Dry Creek Greenway at Grandview Meadows Drive, and Left Hand Greenway at South Pratt Parkway — authorities are advising extreme caution until the runoff lessens.
For those interested in the tube race, registration is $25 and begins at 4 p.m. Thursday in the parking lot at Las Palmeras, 199 Main St. Registration closes at 5:30 p.m. and the race begins at 6 p.m. Along with stand-up paddle boards and tubes, which the organizers will have extras of, racers are welcome to use any kind of kayak, canoe or inflatable, though those that do cannot start until after the official race ends and will not be eligible for prizes.
Once everyone has completed the course, all those who registered can return to Las Palmeras for food (covered in the cost of registration) and a cash bar, with all net proceeds going to the Arkansas River Trust.