Skip to main content

Mountainside Canoeing: A family adventure

07/01/2002 01:00, Published by Anonymous, Categories: In Print, People, Sports

By Deb Olsen

Canoeing is the telemark of watersports,” says Douglas Wipper of The Steamboat Springs Canoeing School. 

“It’s the go-anywhere form of water transportation. You have access to more wilderness vis-à-vis canoeing than any other transportation device.   

“There’s unbelievable wildlife on the Colorado River. We see lots of birds – ducks, teals,  warblers – and beaver, mink, mule deer and osprey. Sometimes we see eagles take fish right out of the river. For wildlife and solitude, canoes are the way to go.”     

You can share your paddling experience with your spouse, kids and dog or go for an afternoon paddle or extended journey. Despite modern technology, paddling a canoe, especially in whitewater, is not as easy as it looks. “It’s the most difficult type of craft in whitewater to master,” Doug says “But once you’ve got the skill, it’s the most flexible craft out there. Good instruction is essential. Seriously, most people say, ‘Oh, I can paddle a canoe.’ But most really do not have good skills.”    

Douglas and his wife, Kay, teach canoeing through their own business, as well as through  Colorado Mountain College. “We start with a flat-water clinic, then choose the best canyon to star the learning progression. We do a different canyon every day, getting progressively more challenging. It’s a nice evolution, not intimidating,” Doug says.    

Canoeing is appealing to people of all ages. Steamboat kids and visiting children learn to paddle on local ponds through the Kids Vacation Center at the Steamboat Ski Area.   

“Kids as young as 10 can enjoy white water paddling,” Douglas says. “It’s something you can do your whole life.”

Ate Skiing Sport Olympian discount Colorado Mountain College Olympians Mountainside shop sports art eat people ski wildlife golf vacation

You might also like

Thumb 350 1

Music Stirs the Spirit

The audience grows quiet as Steamboat Symphony Orchestra conductor Ernest Richardson walks quickly to center stage. When he raises his baton and the musicians play their first few notes, palpable electricity fills the room.
Thumb 354 1

Taking on the Town - Locals from tot to senior embrace Town Challenge

At coffee shops, around water-coolers and at the grocery store on Thursdays after a Town Challenge Series Race, locals are talking about their results, their friends’ finishes, that week’s course and the next event.
Thumb 329 1

Discover What's Wild

This beat any hidden waterfalls or hanging gardens they’d previously stumbled upon in the region’s canyons: Outlaw Arch would measure up as the ninth largest known natural span in the world, and the largest arch discovered since the 1950s.

It looks like we don't have any events for this date. You can always add an event.

It looks like we don't have any events for this date. You can always add an event.

  • Holy Eucharist

    08:00AM — 09:00AM

    All are welcome at this Episcopal communion service

  • Holy Eucharist

    10:30AM — 11:30AM

    All are welcome at this Episcopal communion service.

Order a hardbound copy of the Summer 2014 Wilderness Issue