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Last Chance! National Monuments Review Comments

posted July 1, 2017
by Thomas O'Keefe
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Take action today using our easy online form to protect National Monuments designated under the Antiquities Act! A public comment period began on May 12th and ends July 10th for an April 26th Executive Order which directed Interior Secretary Zinke to conduct a review of all Presidential designations over the past 21 years. A number of Monuments being reviewed are of significant interest to paddlers and provide protections for cherished whitewater stretches, including Bears Ears (Lower San Juan River, UT), Grand Canyon-Parashant (Colorado River, Grand Canyon, AZ), Giant Sequoia National Monument (Tule River, CA), Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument (East Branch of the Penobscot River, ME), Rio Grande del Norte National Monument (Rio Grande, Taos Boxes, NM) and many more.

Last Call! Dolores River Boater Survey - 2017

posted June 30, 2017
by Nathan Fey
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Attention all Dolores River Boaters!

Excited About Boating Colorado's Dolores River this year? American Whitewater and our partners are gathering your feedback on the 2017 boating releases from McPhee Dam. After your trip, Please Take Our Online Survey! Your participation will directly inform the next release from McPhee Dam.  Make your voice heard!

NC National Forests to Host Summer Meetings on Plan Ideas

posted June 22, 2017
by Kevin Colburn
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The Nantahala and Pisgah National Forests will hold open houses at district offices in June and July 2017 to provide the public with opportunities to talk with Forest staff about local issues, district project, and forest plan revision. We encourage paddlers to go chat up your local ranger at one of these meetings and offer your perspective. American Whitewater has been working with the US Forest Service (FS) and a diverse range of regional groups for the past 3 years to develop a new management plan for the Nantahala and Pisgah national forests in Western North Carolina. It is coming along well, and your involvement could help make it even better.

Cancelled 2017 Spring Tallulah Releases Rescheduled

posted June 22, 2017
by Kevin Colburn
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Earlier this year, Georgia Power cancelled two weekends of recreational releases on Tallulah Gorge because of emergency mechanical repairs required on the dam's gates. Representatives of the Atlanta Whitewater Club, American Whitewater, Georgia Canoeing Association, Georgia Power, and the Tallulah Gorge State Park met in May to discuss rescheduling the releases. Agreement was reached and recently finalized, based on a suite of constraints, to make the lost releases up on December 9 and 10, 2017 and April 21 and 22, 2018.

AW Appeals New River Dries Flow and Access Prescriptions

posted June 20, 2017
by Kevin Colburn
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On Friday American Whitewater filed an appeal of the State of West Virginia’s flow and access prescriptions for the spectacular New River Dries. The State’s prescriptions would only restore an average of 3 or 4 days of flows sufficient for paddling as mitigation for the over 240 days lost to hydropower operations. In addition the state would require access 1.2 miles into the 5.4-mile run, foreclosing vehicle-based access on 22% of the run. The prescriptions will last for 30 to 50 years unless our appeal is successful.

Rock Creek Access On NF Feather River Opened at Last! (CA)

posted June 14, 2017
by Megan Hooker
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On June 13, 2017 the Rock Creek Bench river access site on the North Fork Feather River officially opened during a ribbon-cutting ceremony. Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) constructed the site as part of a post FERC licensing agreement with American Whitewater and other members of the Ecological Resources Committee. This access provides a huge safety improvement over how paddlers have accessed this river reach, and marks the completion of the last major goal for American Whitewater in restoring this section of river.

American Whitewater's Spring Stewardship Update 2017

posted June 7, 2017
by Evan Stafford
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Our Stewardship work is possible only through your support, and your financial contribution plays a vital role in protecting and restoring the special rivers that you love. We are a lean and efficient organization-85 cents of every dollar goes directly to our river stewardship work. With your support, we will lean forward and meet the challenges ahead. Please take a moment to see what your contribution will support in our Spring Stewardship Update for 2017.

Protecting Spokane River Summer Flows Goes to Court (WA)

posted June 7, 2017
by Megan Hooker
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The beloved Spokane River flows through the second largest city in Washington state and includes spectacular waterfalls and a deep gorge. In most summers, enough water flows in the River to support fishing, river rafting, and other outdoor recreation. River advocates are asking the Court to hold the Department of Ecology to its duty to protect fish and wildlife, scenic, aesthetic and recreational values, and navigation, when establishing the minimum summer flows allowable for the Spokane River.

AW Volunteer of the Month Presented by Kokatat : Ryan Galway

posted June 7, 2017
by Robert Nasdor
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American Whitewater wants to raise its paddles to recognize Penobscot Paddle and Chowder Society President Ryan Galway as its Volunteer of the Month. Ryan has been an essential volunteer for AW in the northeast, taking a leadership role in efforts to restore flows and improve recreation at hydro dams and working to preserve threatened rivers. In recognition of Ryan Galway’s volunteer efforts, he will be receiving a gift certificate from Kokatat!

Alert: Help Save Katahdin Woods & Waters National Monument (ME)

posted June 5, 2017
by Robert Nasdor
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On May 5th, 2017, the Department of the Interior announced that it would be reviewing millions of acres of public land protected as National Monuments under a piece of legislation called the Antiquities Act. All National Monuments are at risk, but the Department of the Interior has specifically identified public lands in Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Maine for review. One of these areas is the Katahdin Woods & Waters National Monument located in the North Maine Woods. The national monument was established by proclamation by President Obama in August 2016 following the donation and endowment of more than 87,000 acres adjacent to Mount Katahdin and includes a section of the East Branch of the Penobscot River.

WV Passes on Restoring New River Dries

posted June 5, 2017
by Kevin Colburn
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The State of West Virginia today chose to pass on a major economic and environmental opportunity by issuing a water quality certificate that lacks vital restoration of flows to the New River Dries. The certificate outlines certain mandatory conditions that must be adopted by Federal regulators for the forthcoming 30 to 50 year license. The certificate requires the dam owner to release flows suitable for kayaking and rafting on an average of only 3 to 4 days each year.The State’s decision marks a major setback and hurdle in restoring the New River Dries, but may not be the final word on how the river will be managed. American Whitewater will keep working towards a healthy and accessible New River Dries.

Peak Flows Scheduled for Upper Colorado River

posted June 2, 2017
by Nathan Fey
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Palisade, Colorado - Coordinated releases from a series of reservoirs in the Upper Colorado River Basin have been sheduled to provide peak run-off in early June. Flows in the Colorado River near Cameo (Big Sur) are anticipated to be approximately 14,000 – 17,000 cfs from June 7th through June 12th, with the highest flows on Thursday or Friday June 8th or 9th. Big Sur is unlikey to materialize this year.

2017 Clif Flowing Rivers Grant Program

posted June 1, 2017
by Mark Singleton
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Through a long standing partnership with Clif, American Whitewater offers affiliate clubs the opportunity to apply for two Clif Flowing Rivers grants each year. Grants will be distributed to affiliate clubs for projects that promote river stewardship, conservation, access and/or safety on rivers in the United States. American Whitewater and Clif are pleased to announce the Clif Flowing Rivers Campaign, pledging $2,500 to American Whitewater Affiliate Clubs for river stewardship work.

Take Action! Hydropower Legislation Weakens River Protections

posted May 31, 2017
by Megan Hooker
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Congress is currently considering several pieces of hydropower legislation that, in our analysis, would negatively impact rivers if passed in their current form. In our reading of the draft bills, they would undermine the existing balance balance between hydropower and all other river values, including recreation. As your Representative and Senators consider hydropower legislation, it’s critical that they hear from you about why protecting rivers is important. We've made it easy for you to reach out to them...read on to learn how.

Mosquito Road Bridge Access - SFA below Slab Creek Reservoir (CA)

posted May 10, 2017
by Theresa Simsiman
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News Release from the Chief Administrative Office El Dorado County: The County of El Dorado and a coalition comprising American Whitewater, El Dorado County residents and businesses, and other conservation and recreation organizations today announced an agreement assuring continued access to Mosquito Road Bridge aka “The Swinging Bridge” and the South Fork American River. In the Memorandum of Understanding reached on May 9, 2017, the County agreed to allow year-round, unencumbered pedestrian and vehicle access to the South Fork American River at the bridge dawn to dusk unless a closure is required for emergencies or maintenance.

GiveBig Day is coming May 10!

posted May 5, 2017
by Evan Stafford
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Spring is in the air and as another great paddling season comes into focus, we hope that you'll consider making a contribution to American Whitewater on GiveBig Day – Wednesday, May 10. GiveBIG is a one day event through the Seattle Foundation that makes your donation to American Whitewater go further. 

EPA Is Asking Which Water Quality Rules To Cut: Tell Them None

posted May 4, 2017
by Kevin Colburn
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The EPA is asking the public which regulations they should repeal, replace, or modify. They were required to ask this question by a recent Executive Order. Here at American Whitewater we have a pretty simple response to which water quality regulations should be cut: "None." We hope you'll join us in telling the EPA to protect our health and our rivers by keeping water quality regulations strong and in place.

Intermittent Dolores River Closures at Bedrock Bridge Begin May 9!

posted May 3, 2017
by Evan Stafford
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Paddlers planning on paddling the Dolores below Bedrock (Bedrock to Gateway stretch) between May 9 - May 19 need to be aware of intermittent river closures at the new Bedrock Bridge at Colorado Highway (CO) 90. CDOT and SEMA Construction will begin lifting large precast members for the bridge beginning Tuesday, May 9. River users will encounter intermittent half hour river closures at this location just north (downstream) of the Bedrock boat ramp.

May/June AW Journal in the Library Now!

posted May 3, 2017
by Carla Miner
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The May/June issue of the AW Journal is available in the "Library". This issue features ‘As the Cherry Blossoms Bloom, American Whitewater Goes to Washington, DC’.  Read the issue now online or download your copy.

Current members - Read the issue now!
Not a current member - Join or Renew!

20th Annual French Broad River Festival May 5-7th!

posted May 1, 2017
by Evan Stafford
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This May 5-7th, 2017, American Whitewater will be at the 20th annual French Broad River Festival in Hot Springs, NC. Proceeds for the event get donated to American Whitewater and other non-profits. The French Broad River Fest has donated a huge amount to American Whitewater over the past 20 years so come on an out and have a great time showing your support!

The Outdoor Recreation Economy is HUGE

posted April 28, 2017
by Mark Singleton
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The outdoor industry gathered in Washington DC for the annual Outdoor Industry Association Capital Summit event this week. American Whitewater joined our industry partners in support of important issues that impact public lands and waters. New economic impact data was released during the event, and it's HUGE! Americans spend $887 BILLION in consumer spending in outdoor goods and services.

Mokelumne River - 2017 Recreational Flows (CA)

posted April 27, 2017
by Theresa Simsiman
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American Whitewater has been helping to implement negotiated recreational flows on the Mokelumne River for over 15 years. This year’s record water year poses some challenges on roads across California that were washed out due to winter storms. It is no different on the Mokelumne watershed. However, we still have opportunities to paddle!
 

Take Action: Call for a Hearing on Oroville Dam (CA)

posted April 27, 2017
by Megan Hooker
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Earlier this year, two spillways at Oroville Dam on the Feather River in California became severely compromised, prompting the evacuation of approximately 188,000 people. The impact of the failure of these spillways continues to have a significant impact on the river and downstream communities. Those who live downstream of Oroville Dam–along with citizens across the country who live in the shadow of high-hazard hydropower dams–deserve to understand what happened, the full impacts, and what is being done about it. American Whitewater is joining with others to call for a Congressional hearing into these issues and ensure that the public has a voice in the process. Learn more about how you can help our efforts…

Dolores River Update - April 27th

posted April 27, 2017
by Nathan Fey
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Dolores, CO - Releases into the lower Dolores River will begin to ramp down starting Sunday May 7 until minimal boating flows of 800 – 1200 CFS are reached. A high flow event of 4000 cfs is still planned for May 5th, but the duration of the event may be cut down to two or three days. Forecasts continue to drop and may not produce releases that reach into June.

CA, Scheduled Recreational Releases 2017

posted April 19, 2017
by Theresa Simsiman
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California is officially in the wettest season on record giving the state a plethora of paddling choices throughout the year.  Here are some of the paddling opportunities that American Whitewater helped negotiate and implement with hydropower projects across the state including the South Fork American below Slab Creek, South Fork Silver below Ice House, North Fork Feather Rock Creek and Pit 5. 

Help Keep Invasive Species From Threatening Rivers and Access

posted April 18, 2017
by Kevin Colburn
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The spread of invasive aquatic plants and animals is an emerging threat on our rivers. To protect rivers from invasive species, and to avoid closures and limits, paddlers should make every effort to avoid transporting invasive species from one river to another. In this article we offer a friendly reminder to Clean, Drain, and Dry your boat and gear between rivers, and a cautionary tale from our nation's headwaters in Montana.

Hoosic River (NY) Whitewater Releases Are Back!

posted April 7, 2017
by Robert Nasdor
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On Saturday, April 22nd, whitewater releases on the Schaghticoke Gorge section of the Hoosic River will resume after a long hiatus. The Schaghticoke consists of a Class V  drop through the Gorge (for those into that kind of thing) followed by a friendly Class II/III section that can be accessed below the Gorge. Releases on the Hoosic are required under a settlement agreement with American Whitewater. Releases will resume on April 22nd from 1-4, and we need a good turnout from the boating community to increase the number of future releases.

Dolores River - The Early April Update

posted April 6, 2017
by Nathan Fey
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Dolores, Colorado - The highly anticipated April 1st water supply forecast for the Dolores River has finally been released and for boaters, conditions are promising.  With inflow into McPhee Reservoir forecast to be 142% of average, managed releases from McPhee Dam should provide 87 days of flows above 800 cfs, and 50 days above 2000 cfs. Releases have started - lets go boatin'!

Green Utility Takes Surprising Direction - Upper American River Project (CA)

posted April 6, 2017
by Theresa Simsiman
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Recently, the Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD) made an unexpected move to advocate for policies that would undermine environmental protections in the Clean Water Act and the Federal Power Act.  American Whitewater worked with SMUD and other stakeholders in negotiating a settlement agreement for the Upper American River Hydroelectric Project (UARP) that was signed by all parties in 2007. The final license for the project was issued in 2014 and included whitewater recreation flows to mitigate the impacts of its project.

 

Ocoee Release Fix Proposed in TN Legislature

posted April 6, 2017
by Kevin Colburn
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A bill has been introduced in the Tennessee Legislature that aims to continue treasured recreational releases on the Ocoee River after current release agreements expire in March of 2019. The Ocoee River Recreation and Economic Development Fund Act would create a fund that would be used to pay the Tennessee Valley Authority for releases and to pay for other river management costs. Paddlers from TN can weigh in on the bill now, and all paddlers will have a chance to voice support or concerns with the TVA this spring or summer.

Update: Dolores River Flows Steady at 1200cfs this week.

posted April 3, 2017
by Nathan Fey
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Dolores, Colorado - After a cold opening weekend, McPhee Dam will continue to release 1,200 CFS until the runoff starts climbing again later in April.  A new forecast comes out this week that we will combine with the early runoff to craft a new operating plan.  Expect a release of approximately 250,000 AF over approximately 60 days.

American Whitewater Announces Safety Database Upgrade

posted April 1, 2017
by Charlie Walbridge
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After over a year's work American Whitewater has released an upgraded version of their Whitewater Accident Database. It's the largest collection of its kind in the world, with over 1600 fatalities and close calls dating back to 1972. Each report has been checked for accuracy and AW Webmaster Ryan Groth greatly improved the search capacity. You can now locate accidents by a dozen different categories and characteristics. Here's how this project came about, how it evolved, why American Whitewater reports accidents and how you can help us keep this project going in the coming years.

Dolores River Releases - Final March Update

posted March 27, 2017
by Nathan Fey
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Dolores, Colorado - A warm March has started the runoff early and driving McPhee Reservoir elevations up, approaching 6915 and rising. Therefore releases will start ramping up March 29, 2017.  The forecast for the Dolores River has dropped since March 1, but still promises plenty of water for a recreational release from McPhee Reservoir. 

Spring Tallulah Releases Postponed (GA)

posted March 27, 2017
by Kevin Colburn
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Southern Company announced today that they are cancelling (eg postponing) the spring recreational releases on the Tallulah Gorge. The cancellation occured because they decided to conduct emergency maintenance work on a spillway gate atop their 103 year old dam. Southern Company is required to reschedule these releases as soon as practicable by their federal license and the related settlement agreement with American Whitewater and other groups.

Bear River Runs as Idaho Flows Boom

posted March 17, 2017
by Kevin Colburn
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March is the new June in Idaho, and early snowmelt has river flows booming. The dam that normally diverts almost all the water from the Black Canyon of the Bear River has begun to spill and boatable flows are likely for for the next couple weeks. Flows are likely to reach or exceed 1,500cfs which means a rare chance to experience the Bear at big Class V flows.

American Whitewater Staff to Testify In Congress on Hydropower’s Future

posted March 14, 2017
by Kevin Colburn
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American Whitewater California staff Dave Steindorf will testify before a subcommittee of the US House of Representatives at 1:15pm on Wednesday, March 15th, on behalf of the Hydropower Reform Coalition. The hearing will explore the opportunities and challenges of expanding hydropower generation in the US. Dave has over 20 years of experience negotiating environmental and recreational improvements at existing hydropower dams on behalf of the paddling community. Click through to watch the hearing.

 

Releases in Idaho's Milner Mile Likely This Spring

posted March 10, 2017
by Kevin Colburn
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Idaho Power announced today that "flows of 10,000 cfs or greater in the Class V whitewater Milner Gorge Reach (Milner Mile) below Milner Dam on the Snake River are likely to be available during April 2017." In most years the hydropower project removes so much water from the Milner Gorge that whitewater paddling is not possible at any time. In high water years like this one though, the power company must release flows into the big, powerful Class V run known to paddlers as the Milner Mile.

Releases To Lower Dolores River Still Certain for 2017

posted March 7, 2017
by Evan Stafford
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Cortez, Colorado - American Whitewater and local interests in Dolores Water sat down again this month with the most current snowpack, water supply, and McPhee Reservoir storage data, to determine how releases, if possible, can be timed to provide the best boating opportunities, while doing good things for fish, and the health of the River. Releases for the lower Dolores River will happen in 2017 and the forecast for great flows is looking very good right now!

March/April Issue of the AW Journal online now!

posted March 7, 2017
by Carla Miner
article photo 2

The March/April issue of the AW Journal is available in the "Library". Read it online or download your issue.

Current members - Read the issue now!
Not a current member - Join or Renew!

AW Volunteer of the Month Presented by Kokatat - Violet Jakab

posted March 4, 2017
by Theresa Simsiman
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We would like to recognize Violet Jakab for being a vocal community advocate in our efforts to save Mosquito Road Bridge.  No stranger to adversity, as a young woman, Violet escaped communist rule in Romania in the back of a refrigerator truck.  She immigrated to the United States and worked hard for a Master of Science in Civil Engineering, Hydraulics at California State University, Long Beach. When not boating, Violet can be found with Yinky and Maggie her German Shepherds that serve as certified therapy dogs spreading joy among young and old alike.

 

 

Bridging the Gap - Mosquito Road Bridge SFA Slab Creek (CA)

posted March 4, 2017
by Theresa Simsiman
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Originally built in 1867 the “Swinging Bridge” a.k.a. Mosquito Road Bridge over the South Fork American River has long served as a crucial intersection for avid recreationalists.  Yet a Draft Environmental Impact Report (DEIR) recommended removing access at the river and demolishing the bridge once a new $65 million bridge replacement project was completed.  Never a debate of either a new Mosquito Road Bridge or the old Swinging Bridge a coalition of recreational stakeholders dared to ask the question why not both?

State Highway 49 Bridge Replacement Project over the SFA River (CA)

posted March 3, 2017
by Theresa Simsiman
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The State Highway 49 Bridge over the South Fork American River in Coloma is set to be replaced during construction of a $22 million Caltrans project in partnership with the El Dorado County Transportation Commission.  Construction for this project will begin on March 8, 2017 and will continue through Spring of 2019.  For paddlers, this bridge is one of the few remaining free public access sites to the river. American Whitewater worked through the stakeholder process to preserve public access once the new bridge is complete.

 

Clean Water Rule To Be Reviewed and Replaced

posted March 1, 2017
by Kevin Colburn
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Yesterday, President Trump issued an order to the EPA and Army Corps of Engineers to review and replace a federal rule that protects our rivers from pollution. This action will start a multi-year public rulemaking process that will decide the safety and health of our nation’s waterways. Paddlers will have an important role to play in speaking up for the value of clean water and healthy rivers.

Public Hearing for Proposed Non-Motorized Boating Program in Oregon

posted February 26, 2017
by Thomas O'Keefe
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The Oregon State Marine Board proposal to establish a Non-Motorized Boating Program is moving through the state legislature and is set for a hearing on March 1st. We encourage our Oregon members to share their thoughts with their representatives in the state legislature.

Utah proposing to eliminate throw bag for throwable PFD rule for rafters

posted February 23, 2017
by Evan Stafford
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The state of Utah is currently proposing to eliminate their current rule that allows boaters to bring a throw bag on trips instead of a throwable personal flotation device. Federal Coast Guard rules require that all boats greater than 16 feet in length contain a throwable PFD. American Whitewater would like to see the state of Utah and the Coast Guard work together to change the Coast Guard's rules as they relate to river travel in order to allow for a throw bag to be carried instead of a throwable PFD. Utah's existing policy seems like a superior one to us, and we'd like to see it adopted nationally rather than eliminated. 

Wild & Scenic Tuolumne River Put-in Gets a Makeover (CA)

posted February 21, 2017
by Theresa Simsiman
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Our colleagues at Tuolumne River Trust along with Groveland USFS, local outfitters and local volunteers are working together to implement long overdue improvements at the put-in for the Wild & Scenic Tuolumne River at Meral's Pool.

Releases to Lower Dolores River certain in 2017.

posted February 17, 2017
by Nathan Fey
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Cortez, Colorado - Last week, American Whitewater met with local water managers, fisheries biologists, an other interests in Dolores River water, to start negotiating releases from McPhee Dam - like we do every spring.  This year, things are looking very good for the Dolores...

Update on New Whitewater Park in Eagle, CO

posted February 17, 2017
by Kestrel Kunz
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Eagle, Colorado - The new Eagle River Park, “connecting the heart of Eagle to the soul of the river”, aims to improve river recreation opportunities for local Eagle residents, as well as visitors from around the nation. After a year of working on the design of the whitewater features, S20 design and the Town of Eagle released updates on the plan yesterday. The updates include a photo album of Existing Conditions at the Eagle River Park site, new descriptions of the four whitewater features, and a recap of the latest Steering Committee meeting, including the guiding principles for the park design.

PG&E Withdraws License Application on Butte Creek

posted February 6, 2017
by Dave Steindorf
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PG&E announced on February 2, 2017 that it was withdrawing its application to relicense the DeSabla – Centerville Hydroelectric Project on Butte Creek and the West Branch Feather River.  PG&E engaged in a fifteen year relicensing process, spent tens of millions, only to determine that the energy from this project has been replaced by solar power.

AW to rehabiliate low-head dam on Dolores River - Colorado

posted February 6, 2017
by Nathan Fey
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Gateway, Colorado - Last month, American Whitewater, in partnership with local property owners, conservation and wildlife agencies, kicked off a multi-phase project to remove and rehabilitate a low-head diversion structure on the Dolores River. The Project, funded by the Colorado Water Conservation Board, will improve boater safety and enhance fish and riparian habitats along one of the mosty highly valued rivers in the Southern Rockies.

Upper Colorado River Access funded by Land & Water Conservation Fund - CO

posted February 6, 2017
by Nathan Fey
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Dotsero, Colorado - A key river access point on the Upper Colorado river, once threatened with closure, has now been permanently protected through a partnership between BLM and Eagle County. 

A Busy Week In DC Shifts River Protections

posted February 3, 2017
by Kevin Colburn
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With so much news and change coming out of Washington DC over the past week, we put together a quick recap of recent actions that we think will affect whitewater rivers. We also put together some options for sharing your opinions on these issues with lawmakers.

TAKE ACTION: Protect Methow Headwaters

posted January 31, 2017
by Thomas O'Keefe
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The Bureau of Land Management is currently accepting public comment on a proposal to protect the Methow Headwaters from an industrial-scale copper mine above the town of Mazama. The proposed mine would negatively impact the incredible opportunities for outdoor recreation in the Methow Valley. A strong show of public support will be required to secure protection for this river valley.

TAKE ACTION! Restore the Snake River (WA)

posted January 27, 2017
by Megan Hooker
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We have a once in a generation opportunity to restore one of the greatest river systems of the world–the Columbia and the Snake­–by removing four outdated and expensive dams on the lower Snake River. Federal agencies are accepting public comment on the future of the Columbia and Snake River dams through February 7th, 2017, and your voices are important to this process! Unlocking the lower Snake River is not only the single most effective thing that we can do to restore wild salmon runs, but it will also restore whitewater opportunities on the mainstem Snake and enhance them in key upper tributaries.
 

2017 National Paddling Film Festival (KY)

posted January 18, 2017
by Mark Singleton
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For 35 years the National Paddling Film Festival has been hosting a competition to determine the best in paddle sport videos and images. Come see American Whitewater and the year's best photos and videos at the National Paddling Film Festival (NPFF)! This year's NPFF will be held on February 17-18 in Frankfort, KY at the Buffalo Trace Distillery. Tickets are $20 online or $25 at the door.

One more day to submit input on Colorado's Brown Canyon National Monument!

posted January 17, 2017
by Kestrel Kunz
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There is only one more day left to share what you value most in the Browns Canyon National Monument planning area! The Bureau of Land Management, U.S Forest Service, and Colorado Parks and Wildlife are working together to develop a Coordinated Management Plan for Browns Canyon National Monument. In order to design a plan that most benefits citizens and visitors of Colorado, the agencies designed an Online Survey and Mapping Tool to understand how the public interacts with the Browns Canyon planning area and what aspects of the area are most important to the public.

 

River Stories Wanted

posted January 13, 2017
by Ambrose Tuscano
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The AW Journal wants YOU to send us your river stories in 2017!

BLM and USFS Issue 20 Year Protection for Kalmiopsis Rivers! (CA/OR)

posted January 13, 2017
by Megan Hooker
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On January 12, 2017, the BLM and Forest Service announced a 20-year halt to new mining activities in the watersheds of the North Fork Smith, Illinois, Pistol River and Hunter Creek in Oregon. American Whitewater celebrates this important milestone with the conservation and recreation partners that we've worked with, and thanks Representatives DeFazio and Huffman and Senators Wyden and Merkley for their dedication to protecting this place. And we thank YOU too for standing up for these wild rivers!

Comment Opportunity on Fossil Creek Management Plan (AZ)

posted January 11, 2017
by Thomas O'Keefe
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After several years of implementing interim management measures, the Coconino and Tonto National Forests are preparing a Comprehensive River Management Plan (CRMP) for Fossil Creek. The CRMP will provide detailed direction, implementation actions, and monitoring to protect and enhance river values. A preliminary comment opportunity is open through Friday January 27th (recently extended from January 13th) on alternatives the Forest Service is considering.

Colorado seeks $25 million for river health and stream planning.

posted January 7, 2017
by Nathan Fey
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The State of Colorado is asking lawmakers to approve $25 million for developing Stream Management Plans around the State to protect environmental and recreational values while providing for our increasing water needs. The funding proposal will be reviewed on Wednesday, January 11th, and there will be opportunities for YOU to support this important work to save our rivers.

Update on boat passage at Utah's Tusher Dam

posted January 7, 2017
by Nathan Fey
article photo 4

As re-construction of the Tusher Dam and boat chute on Utah's Green River comes to a close this month, American Whitewater is working with the State of Utah and US Natural Resources Conservation Serivice to provide updates on the Project. Here's the latest news on installation of boater warning signs, and the ‘Flow Allocation Agreement’ which commits flows for recreation at the boat chute.

 

Winter AW Journal in the Library Now!

posted January 5, 2017
by Carla Miner
article photo 2

The Winter issue of the AW Journal features "The Top Ten Stewardship Issues of 2017".

Current members - Read the issue now!
Not a current member - Join or Renew!

Join American Whitewater On The Wild And Scenic Rogue River (OR) In 2017

posted January 4, 2017
by Mark Singleton
article photo 2

In June 2017, American Whitewater members will have an opportunity to join American Whitewater staff and board members for an exclusive trip on Oregon's Rogue River. We invite you to come learn more about what we're up to while having a great time enjoying one of our nation's first Wild and Scenic Rivers.

Agencies Consider New River Dries & AW Proposal (WV)

posted January 4, 2017
by Kevin Colburn
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Federal decision makers are accepting comments on their plans for the New River Dries until January 8th. American Whitewater has proposed a schedule of 41 annual releases that will be great for the river, paddlers, and other stakeholders. Individuals are encouraged to comment, as are clubs and businesses. 

Advanced Southeast Releases Set for 2017!

posted January 4, 2017
by Kevin Colburn
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It is looking like another great year to be a paddler in the Southeast! Over the past two decades American Whitewater has worked with affiliate clubs and partners to negotiate an awesome array of scheduled releases on river reaches previously dewatered by hydropower dams. Enjoy these incredible opportunities, and be safe out there!

President Designates Bears Ears National Monument (UT)

posted December 29, 2016
by Thomas O'Keefe
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This week, President Obama declared the Bears Ears region of southeast Utah a National Monument, permanently protecting this incredible region that includes the San Juan River. American Whitewater is especially proud to announce that the National Monument Proclamation specifically acknowledges whitewater paddling as an appropriate and valued recreation activity.

Proposed Asphalt and Gravel Mine threatens the Upper Colorado River

posted December 6, 2016
by Evan Stafford
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A new proposal to allow the development of a 90- acre open pit mine in Eagle County at the gateway to the Colorado River has local river users asking questions. We encourage everyone to attend an Open House December 6 at 6 PM at the Gypsum Recreation Center, and to make your voices heard at the Town Council meeting where they will discuss the application on December 13 at 7 PM.

 

 

Seeking Input on Oregon's Proposed Non-Motorized Boating Program

posted December 4, 2016
by Thomas O'Keefe
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For the past five years the Oregon State Marine Board has been engaging with the non-motorized boating community to learn how the Marine Board can better meet the needs of the community. The state's Non-Motorized Boating Advisory Committee made a unanimous recommendation to institute a Non-Motorized Boating Program that includes elements to address access, safety, education and funding. As an outcome of this process the Marine Board is proposing legislation for the 2017 legislative session that includes a new fee for paddlesports. We are seeking paddler input on this proposal.

It's Permit Season!

posted December 4, 2016
by Thomas O'Keefe
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If you haven't started already it's time to start planning for that big multi-day trip you've been wanting to do. American Whitewater's permit database can help you find the information you need.

Congress Approves Legislation to Count Outdoor Recreation Economy

posted December 1, 2016
by Thomas O'Keefe
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In a strong statement of bipartisan support for the value of the outdoor recreation economy, the Senate and House have now both unanimously passed legislation that will count outdoor recreation jobs as part of Gross Domestic Product.

Please Share Your Ocoee Opinions With Us (TN)

posted November 28, 2016
by Kevin Colburn
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The agreements that provide recreational releases on the wildly popular Ocoee River expire at the end of 2018. American Whitewater has created a survey to help us better understand and advocate for the interests of paddlers as TVA reconsiders releases. If you paddle the Ocoee, please take 5 minutes to share your thoughts with us.

El Dorado County Threatens Access to the South Fork American River (CA)

posted November 21, 2016
by Theresa Simsiman
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El Dorado County has released the Draft Environmental Impact Report (DEIR) for the Mosquito Road Bridge Replacement Project. The preferred proposal would cut off key access to the Slab Creek reach of the South Fork American River.  Last spring saw the first boating releases on this reach where over 200 paddlers showed up to experience this classic Class IV-V run. Yet, despite 3 years of community engagement, the DEIR fails to recognize the impacts to recreation like whitewater boating. The County DEIR proposes to remove the old bridge once construction is completed and provides zero mitigation for the loss of this recreational resource.
 

2016 Board Of Directors Election - Current Members Vote Now!

posted November 14, 2016
by Mark Singleton
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Organizational governance and the continuity of such governance are key responsibilities of our Board of Directors. American Whitewater is very fortunate to have Directors with a passion for our mission and a mix of appropriate skills to help guide AW and meet the challenges we face, both now and in the future. Please place your ballots for Directors to fill four open seats. Current American Whitewater members can cast their votes for Directors through Midnight Pacific Time, December 15th.

New Dam Proposed for Chehalis River (WA)

posted November 9, 2016
by Thomas O'Keefe
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The Chehalis Basin is the second largest river basin in Washington State. It is a uniquely fertile and abundant river basin, but it has suffered from devastating flooding for decades. One proposal to address the chronic flooding issue is construction of a new dam that would represent the largest new dam in Washington State in years on a currently free-flowing river. A public comment period is now open on this project through November 14th.

Support American Whitewater on Colorado Gives Day!

posted November 8, 2016
by Evan Stafford
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Your gift matters! American Whitewater is working hard to protect and restore flows to Colorado’s rivers. With your support, we’ll defend the public’s ability to fish and float Colorado’s rivers and keep working hard to ensure that the Colorado Water Plan will protect the state's rivers and the communities that rely on them for years to come.

Great Season for Releases in CA, Bad Energy Bill Looming

posted November 8, 2016
by Evan Stafford
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On October 29-30, recreational releases on the Pit 1 reach of the Pit River marked the end of another amazing year for restored boating opportunities at hydropower projects in California, with over 100 days of whitewater releases this year alone. While all this is very good news for paddlers and rivers, there is bad news looming on the horizon. Some members of Congress are pushing to pass a comprehensive energy bill and we need your help to stop it.

Join Us to #OptOutside

posted November 8, 2016
by Thomas O'Keefe
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Last year our friends at REI started a movement for people to reconnect outdoors over the holidays. At American Whitewater we enthusiastically join our partners at REI in the belief that A Life Outdoors Is a Life Well Lived. We encourage all our members to join in building on the momentum of #OptOutside to start a new tradition the day after Thanksgiving.

TAKE ACTION for Kalmiopsis Rivers (OR/CA)

posted November 7, 2016
by Megan Hooker
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American Whitewater has been working with our partners to protect cherished whitewater rivers in SW Oregon and NW California from mining threats. Many of you have helped by reaching out to your Congressional representatives and speaking up during agency comment periods. This fall, the Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management are considering temporariliy stopping new mining claims in the region for 20 years and are receiving public comment by December 29th. We need your voices again. Learn more here and take action today!

Support American Whitewater into 2017 and Beyond

posted November 7, 2016
by Evan Stafford
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American Whitewater works to protect and restore whitewater rivers across the country, and we rely on your ongoing support to keep our work on track. In the upcoming months, we will continue our stewardship work on the rivers you love, and ensure that everyone has more opportunities to enjoy them safely. We thank you for becoming an American Whitewater member or making a charitable donation today!

2016 Holiday Membership Offer

posted November 3, 2016
by Carla Miner
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Are you looking for that special Holiday gift for the paddler or river enthusiast on your list?

How about a one year AW membership paired up with our 2017 AW calendar. . .and all for just $40! Giving a great gift and supporting your favorite non-profit at the same time. . .great river karma! 

Protecting Access to New Hampshire Rivers

posted November 3, 2016
by Robert Nasdor
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Northeast boaters can celebrate that another beloved whitewater gem has been protected. Paddlers on the Winnipeseaukee River are now assured that the put-in on the Lower Winni in Northfield, NH will be forever protected thanks to the donation of a parcel from Gloria Blais in memory of her husband Roger. Gloria donated the land to the Town of Northfield for the purpose of assuring that future generations of boaters will have access to the river. Protecting river access to the Winni is part of an ongoing effort by AW in the northeast region to protect river access.

Speak Up for Colorado's Browns Canyon National Monument!

posted October 27, 2016
by Nathan Fey
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Arkansas River, Colorado - Over the next few days, paddlers are encouraged to participate in a series of listening sessions that will to guide the development of the Coordinated Management Plan for Browns Canyon National Monument. This is your chance to help decide how you want to recreate within the monument, what is meaningful about it and the role it plays in the way we live, work and play.

Comments Needed for Dolores River Wild & Scenic Suitability (CO)

posted October 13, 2016
by Evan Stafford
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Last month, American Whitewater and our conservation partners won a monumental shift in Wild & Scenic River considerations in Colorado. The Colorado Water Conservation Board (CWCB) reversed its long-standing policy of opposing federal Wild & Scenic River protections and voted unanimously to support the US Bureau of Land Management (BLM) draft Resource Management Plan and Wild and Scenic Suitability determination for key segments of the San Miguel and Dolores Rivers. Now the BLM is accepting public comments on their Uncompahgre Field Office draft Resource Management Plan, including Wild & Scenic River Suitability, through November 1st and we need your help to support these new suitability findings.

American Whitewater Wants to Hear Your River Stories

posted October 7, 2016
by Ambrose Tuscano
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As we do from time to time, we’re soliciting stories from you to help make our magazine the best it can be. So whether you’re a regular contributor or someone who’s never written about paddling before, now is the time to write and send us your stories. 

AW Volunteer of the Month Presented by Kokatat - Keith Kishiyama

posted October 5, 2016
by Theresa Simsiman
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We would like to recognize lifetime American Whitewater member, Keith Kishiyama, for organizing the ACA sponsored Rock Creek Slalom and Tobin Downriver Race for the 2016 Feather River Festival. Keith’s experience designing the annual Mokelumne River Slalom and organizing the annual Cherry Creek Race made him the perfect candidate to take over the paddling fun at this year’s Feather Fest.

AW Volunteer of the Month Presented by Kokatat - Matt Anger

posted October 5, 2016
by Theresa Simsiman
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We would like to thank Matt Anger, our volunteer of the month for helping set a new precedent this year at Gauley Fest, American Whitewater's biggest fundraiser of the year! Matt was essential in contributing to the early set up and challenging break down at the festival grounds.

Public Process for Snake River Dams Underway

posted September 30, 2016
by Thomas O'Keefe
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Public Scoping Hearings have been scheduled this fall in Washington State, Oregon, Idaho and Montana to discuss the fate of Snake River Dams and their impact on salmon resources in the Snake River Watershed. We are encouraging the paddling community to engage in this public process which has implications for the overall health of the Snake River ecosystem and tributaries like the Lochsa, Selway, and Salmon River.

Plan for Index-Galena Road Repairs on North Fork Sky Open for Comment (WA)

posted September 30, 2016
by Thomas O'Keefe
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Snohomish County Public Works has published the long-awaited Environmental Assessment for repairs on the Index-Galena Road that historically provided access to the North Fork Skykomish River for whitewater boaters. Public input will be considered in agency decision making on whether repair of this important access road will move forward. The deadline for comments is October 31, 2016.

Ohiopyle Falls (PA) Festival Postponement to Oct 15

posted September 29, 2016
by Mark Singleton
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Ohiopyle Falls (PA) Festival Update - due to significant rain in the mid atlantic for the weekend of the Ohiopyle Falls Race, the Ohiopyle Fall Festival and Over the Falls Race is being postponed to Oct 15, 2016. We hope to see everyone there.

Russell Fork Rendezvous October 21 - 23 Elkhorn City, KY

posted September 26, 2016
by Mark Singleton
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Feather Festival, Gauley Festival, and Gore Fest were all a stomping good time for the paddling community and supported the American Whitewater river stewardship program. Well it’s not over yet! Russell Fork Rendezvous takes place October 21 - 23 in Elkhorn City, KY.

Help Protect Flathead River Tributaries (MT)

posted September 26, 2016
by Kevin Colburn
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Next month marks the 40th anniversary of the designation of Montana's four Wild and Scenic Rivers (3 Flathead Forks + the Missouri). We now have a once-in-a-generation chance to expand on that incredible legacy of river conservation in Montana. Take action to support new river protections on the Flathead National Forest this week! 

A monumental win for the Dolores and Colorado’s Rivers!

posted September 23, 2016
by Evan Stafford
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Colorado, Sept. 2016 – After another lengthy round of meetings between American Whitewater and our conservation partners, and members of the Colorado Water Conservation Board (CWCB), a monumental shift in Wild & Scenic River considerations has been won in the State. This week, the CWCB reversed its long-standing policy of opposing federal Wild & Scenic River protections and voted unanimously to support the US Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Wild and Scenic Suitability determination for key segments of the San Miguel and Dolores Rivers, and important tributaries to the Gunnison River.

Oregon Seeks Comment on Chetco and Molalla State Scenic Waterways

posted September 16, 2016
by Megan Hooker
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Earlier this year, Oregon Governor Kate Brown designated portions of the Molalla and Chetco Rivers as the state’s first new State Scenic Waterways since 1988. Now, the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department is developing rules that will apply to how the rivers are managed. The agency is seeking public comment on their proposed rules through 5 p.m. on Friday, September 30th. The whitewater paddling community highly values the Chetco and Molalla Rivers, and we encourage you to weigh in on this final step of the process!

TAKE ACTION!! Protect OR's NF Smith Watershed!

posted September 15, 2016
by Megan Hooker
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The Oregon Water Resources Department recently proposed a new rule that will protect the instream uses of the Smith River and its tributaries. The rule is a critical step in proactively safeguarding the fish, wildlife, and recreation uses of the waters of the Smith River watershed in Oregon from ill-advised water development such as large-scale mining proposals. The agency is requesting public comment by 5 p.m. on October 28th, and we encourage you to weigh in!

Ohiopyle (PA) Over the Falls Festival Oct 1, 2016

posted September 13, 2016
by Mark Singleton
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American Whitewater "Ohiopyle Over the Falls Festival" will be held on Saturday, October 1, 2016. Come on out and participate in the Falls Race, the Freestyle event, or just run laps on the falls!

AW/VPC Appeal Vermont Move to Restrict Boating on Green River

posted September 8, 2016
by Robert Nasdor
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American Whitewater and Vermont Paddlers Club today appealed the decision by the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) that limits whitewater boating opportunities on the Green River in Morristown. DEC issued a water quality certification for the Morrisville Hydroelectric Project that reduces opportunities for whitewater kayakers to paddle the Green River compared with natural conditions, and in addition, eliminates all opportunities for scheduled whitewater boating releases that are enjoyed by scores of paddlers from the northeast as well as boaters from Canada under current operations. The Green River is a highly valued whitewater river containing a series of challenging drops and falls as it descends from the Green River Reservoir to the Lamoille River.

American Whitewater's GoreFest 2016!

posted September 2, 2016
by Evan Stafford
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It’s safe to say that Gore Fest 2016 was a huge success! The weekend was host to great flows, skilled paddlers, just the perfect amount of carnage, and an incredible volunteer squad that kept the river safe and the party wild. Over 400 people joined us at Rancho del Rio to enjoy what Gore Canyon and the Upper Colorado have to offer. A total of 153 kayakers, rafters, and SUP-boarders competed in races and freestyle events. Overall, we had 159 new and renewing members pledge to support American Whitewater and our stewardship efforts. 

Kokatat Presents September's Volunteer Of The Month

posted September 2, 2016
by Evan Stafford
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This month, American Whitewater recognizes Nannette Johnson as our September Volunteer of the Month. Nannette was instrumental to this years GoreFest, working closely with our Colorado Stewardship Team to put on an amazing weekend of paddling, partying and raising support and awareness for the protection of flows in the Upper Colorado River. 

September/October AW Journal in the Library Now!

posted September 1, 2016
by Carla Miner
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The September/October issue of the AW Journal features "a Family Road Trip!". . .and much more.

Current members - Read the issue now!
Not a current member - Join or Renew!

Urgent Action Needed to Protect Grand Canyon!

posted August 31, 2016
by Evan Stafford
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Arizona – Right now, legislation to construct a massive, amusement park-style development in the Grand Canyon has been introduced to the Navajo Nation Tribal Council. This massive development includes a tramway from the Grand Canyon Rim to the confluence of the Little Colorado and Colorado Rivers, a food pavilion, amphitheater and an elevated walkway at the confluence, and at the rim hotels, restaurants, and cultural center. As paddlers who’ve either experienced the Grand Canyon, or dream to one day, we’ve got to voice our opposition to this project NOW. 


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