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 Professor Paddle : General : Whitewater Forum : Whitewater Parks
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14kayaking2
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  Quote 14kayaking2 Replybullet Topic: where to start
    Posted: 26 Aug 2008 at 2:20pm
Being new to the area, I don't really know where to begin to get some of these rivers to at least be looked at as far as whitewater parks go.  However...  I have extensive experience working with organizations to preserve trails and gain access for mountain biking and other forms of recreation.  Also, I am just shy of a masters degree in forest resource management, so I have a very good understanding of NEPA compliance, and showing that the impact of creating these kinds of things is actually much better than people believe.  My biggest problem is that I have no idea about the locality of these areas and where good places may be(just give me time).  I have resources in Colorado that show how the creation of some of these parks will actually bolster the economy and help provide for less erosion and prevents the loss of sediment and riverbed erosion.  Indeed Buena Vista and Salida Colorado have actually created an entire community that exists largely because of the whitewater.  Buena Vista had little tourism other than rafting and Kayaking the Arkansas river, and now has a thriving community based on their river.  This is largely due to a very expensive playpark that they put in within town.  In fact the community is growing and many more people are buying into the area due to this.  It should be easy to prove that Salmon and other migratory fish will actually benefit from such a set up as well, because it creates a pool/riffle system that they use to move upstream....  Essentially what I am saying is...  where is the best locale and when was the last time someone pushed for it?   I think that a new beginning is not a bad idea, and it may take a while(usually years), but without the push toward it, it will never happen.
"We are only boaters between swims" Matty
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dblanchard
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  Quote dblanchard Replybullet Posted: 26 Aug 2008 at 3:37pm
Hi,

I'm not able to help with where to start for a whitewater park, but could I enlist your help for one of my boy scout's Eagle projects. He wants to build a mountain bike trail from Snoqualmie Ridge down to the Preston Park & Ride with the idea that people would bike (or hike) down and ride the bus back up to the Ridge. Alternatively, hikers could park at Preston and hike up, then ride the bus back to their cars.

King County owns the land he wants to use, he just needs some guidance in getting it all approved.

If you are interested, post a reply, and I'll get in touch with you.

Thx,

D
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  Quote jihad Replybullet Posted: 26 Aug 2008 at 4:41pm
Skookcumchuck river @ Centralia would be a great place, and I and others have thought about it for a while. It's got good flows it's right off of I-5 half way between seattle and portland and located in a town that likes and is excited about this kind of development. Being a local resident I have thought about talking to the city about it, but I don't know where to begin. (my biggest problem is I'm not much of a salesman, and don't now how to approch the city about it.) If you have any ideas or what to get together/help/talk about it feel free to contact me,
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spilly
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  Quote spilly Replybullet Posted: 26 Aug 2008 at 6:12pm
The locks are ideal for a whitewater park. Granted, this is not the sort of thing that is going to happen overnight, but it is something that could definitely happen. The fish ladder could use some major renovations anyway to ease passage for returning salmon. A whitewater park could double as a more gradual transition for salmon, and vice versa. I imagine that kayakers would only be able to use this park when the salmon were not running, nevertheless, I think it would be great.

Edited by spilly - 26 Aug 2008 at 6:13pm
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1150lbsofaire
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  Quote 1150lbsofaire Replybullet Posted: 27 Aug 2008 at 9:04am
the yakima kayaking club has been working on one for years and im sure they would love some help. the best way to get a hold of them would be through the local gear shop Pacific River & Alpine Sports
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AGman
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  Quote AGman Replybullet Posted: 27 Aug 2008 at 9:19am
I work for a stream restoration engineering firm here in Seattle.  James and I worked on trying to get a park on the Cedar River in Renton...long story, but the end is that they weren't really interested.  I have some ideas and I know James has a bunch more.  There are a number of permitting issues that one has to jump through out here in the NW - much different from CO, Washington Fish and Wildlife will put an end to anything if it can't be explained clearly that the fish will be happy with some new rapids to play in - I have talked to them extensively about this.

I would be happy to chat more about what I know if you're interested.

Nick
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14kayaking2
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  Quote 14kayaking2 Replybullet Posted: 27 Aug 2008 at 2:45pm
As far as who to start by contacting...   Talk to the county, or city parks commisioner.  They may tell you to attend a parks meeting (usually bi-monthly, or monthly.)  This also takes time.  Essentially you have to get it brought up to the correct board(whoever owns the land) and create a proposal of what, why, and what kind of impact it would bring.  I would be happy to help out, as more trails, especially multi-use highly functional trails, are often pretty acceptable.  The biggest thing is to find out who owns it and has final say in what occurs, then create a very basic proposal and see what they say.  If they have any interest, then you start proceeding with more details and working toward your goals.

"We are only boaters between swims" Matty
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James
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  Quote James Replybullet Posted: 02 Sep 2008 at 12:03pm
This seems to have gained a bit more conversation than at times before so why not take yet another stab at organizing what seems to be an un-organizable group of people... We the Whitewater Paddlers!!!

I say this because I too am difficult to organize. I'm an individual and I love to rip off at my own pace. Unfortunately I found out on the last time around that when dealing with the Government unless you have a un-ending source of funding, you have to have support and numbers to achieve any type of action.

In times of past I have tried over and over to rally people, and it has only worked with marginal success. Planned meetings have resulted in a few individuals busting ass but without any further support from the rest of the community that acts interested. Outside of a occasional, heck yea ... I would play at a park - or - Oh man I would love to help, there was little effort invested to actually make things move.

That being said. I want a whitewater park, and I am willing to help and do what it takes to get one built. I will do things I am good at and I will do things I am not. I will show up and plan, and I will show up and take action. Anything short of that from a substantial number of paddlers is going to result in the same outcome.

To really get this rolling, in a direction that I think is new and fresh:

WA is much different than other States in regards to Envior policy, like Nick said. Rocky and Nick both taught me a bit about that, during the last attempt and that is something that must be considered and addressed prior to approaching anyone with the idea. To address this issue you really have to look at what motivates decisions by cities.

If there is questionable enviornmental practice (and until WA has a park any first park will be questionable at best), the first thought is money. Enviornment in washington means $$$. So if the city does not see your project as a substantial Benefit they are not going to risk the investment of time or resources to back it up. Benefit comes in two forms... Service to the Community and seperate but ultimately the same , Profitability.

That means you are going to have to show its first safe for the enviornment and that will be taken in balance with Community Interest and ROI.

To run with this understanding I think we should take a new approach. Its a bummer that we have to go this route because it speaks volumes about our system, but we have to approach this as businessmen with an over inflated voice of community support, because in reality were not a very big group, and if we rely on our numbers to give us voice were not relying on much. We need to be louder with bigger voices to offset our numbers.

To start this I have created a Linked In group for business men and women to join. The purpose of this group is to form a professional network of paddlers that are willing to invest personally (time or money) towards the interest of building a whitewater park.

There are two reasons I like this idea.

First is that my hope is when other paddlers see professionals that are willing to get involved they will pick up suit and join in with a real contribution of effort ect...

Second is that I have already found several city council members in seattle, and other surrounding cities that utilize this network for professional purposes. An introduction from a substantial group of business men and women would be a very unique method and I feel considering the relative success it has in the business world it could help here also. Its like a little snapshot of community participation that could give an official the initial impression that this is business, with community support.  Which ultimately is exactly what we need to communicate.

Here is a link to the Group on Linked In. If you not a member check it out. If you are a member join the Group and Help out.

http://www.linkedin.com/e/gis/705327

And lastly on such a long winded post. Just like any social group, motives and efforts can be misleading and in some cases preventative of success even from within your own direct community. The success of a park in our area will depend on the ability of our direct group to gain support from other related groups, Formal and Informal. This means that we need to enlist help from everyone that will listen and it means that although we will require leadership on the process, there can be no head or foot, but rather braches of equal value all reaching for growth in the same area. Community Support and Involvement to increase the preservation and recreation on Local Rivers.

http://www.linkedin.com/e/gis/705327

Lets get organized !!!

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dave
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  Quote dave Replybullet Posted: 02 Sep 2008 at 3:10pm
James,

You know I would love to get involved with this but, I am very politically challanged......as you know.....
D

P.S. I keep telling you to talk to Bill Gates, he loves to spend money on helping his local community!! Even when its in another country....
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James
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  Quote James Replybullet Posted: 02 Sep 2008 at 4:35pm
No doubt that we need to talk to bill gates. Man that guy could make it happen for sure. Can you arrange that for me. Thanks

The bottom line is that we have to show that whats good for Salmon is features and thats what a whitewater park is. The difference is that we need to work on a method to deliver this, and I hate to say this JP, but that means a slogan and everything.

My efforts and abilities are in the area of Organization, Planning, and Sales. So I am going to start doing a little work on this of my own. I have already started a group on linkedIn and if your interested in getting involved in a whitewater planning session You should JOIN THIS GROUP!

The idea is not for this group to pitch any single idea, but rather become a good source for anyone that feels they might have an opportunity in their respective community that they want to develop. Tap into the group and lets try to get it done together!

After all if Brown Bear starts advertising like this it must be true right?
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dblanchard
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  Quote dblanchard Replybullet Posted: 02 Sep 2008 at 5:10pm
So, I've joined the LinkedIn community - great idea. If you are serious about getting Bill Gates' support, I think someone needs to invite him, and Melinda and the kids, out on the water. I'm willing to help with that, but I don't have any connection to him. Hmm. I should look in LinkedIn.

D
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