Publisher’s Letter: Late Snows and Heavy Rains…

Rafting. Photo courtesy of Colorado Parks and Wildlife.
Rafting. Photo courtesy of Colorado Parks and Wildlife.

 

Nothing’s more mutable than water. So with all this late snow and heavy rains we’ve been monitoring the Poudre River so that we could provide alerts to our readers. But while the river is seemingly running high there are no flood warnings at this time.

And just this past Saturday we even had the firsthand report of experienced kayakers who advised that real-time conditions on the Poudre were “perfect.”

But with all this precipitation these “perfect conditions” can change within less than 24 hours. And while when we checked again today there were no flood warnings, as I write this torrents of rain are coming down — and mid-morning the temperature actually dropped threatening snow once again.

Weather conditions eventually clear and even when we’re inconvenienced, we soon forget most weather episodes. But what we can’t forget is the number of water-related fatalities that happen each year throughout the country — and sadly, some are local.

One of these Spring days the weather is bound to warm up and naturally, folks will want to enjoy some recreational activities on the Poudre. So we thought it a good idea to share some safety tips provided by the Poudre Heritage Alliance. For more information and maps of real-time conditions, go to: poudreheritage.org

Play It Safe Tips™

Wear a life vest

  • Use proper flotation devices
  • Wear shoes
  • Wear a helmet
  • Don’t tie anything to yourself or to your tube/raft/kayak

Safe to Go?

  • Know the weather conditions and water conditions
  • Poudre River water is melted snow — it is always cold
  • Avoid logs, branches, rocks, and debris

Know Where You Are

  • Take a map
  • Plan your take-out location before you get in the river.

Float Sober, Float Safe

  • Alcohol and drugs impair judgment

Be Courteous

  • Pack it in, pack it out
  • Share the river

What if you flip

  • Do not stand in the river — avoid foot entrapment
  • Float on your back with feet pointing down river and toes out of the water
  • Use your arms to paddle to shore

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