Wednesday, April 8, 2015

It can, and it is.

5 years ago I wrote this:

If you consider yourself a mountain biker, and if you haven't ridden a bike park in the last year, you really need to look in the mirror and ask yourself why not. Aside from the thrill-a-minute nature of the riding that is evolving within these parks, it is so easy, so fast, and yes, so fun to up your skill level in the span of a few hours. 

Fast forward to 2015 and the nearby town of Montrose went and blew everyone's minds with the progressive decision to approve, finance, and build a whitewater park on the Uncompahgre River.

Along with Greg and Skippy, I've made the ~hour drive down there thrice already this month.

And I swear I've learned more about boat control in those few hours than in the past 4 years combined.


The water we're playing on (ahem, in) would be in the Uncompahgre River regardless, drawn from two different reservoirs and being delivered to irrigate this arid valley.  Quite an enlightened move for this little crossroads town to think so far ahead.

By contrast, our home of Grand Junction has both the Colorado and Gunnison Rivers coursing through, with guaranteed (and much larger) flows year-round, a huge outdoor-minded community, and a substantially larger tax base.  And they won't even talk about this kind of thing.  "It can't work" is the basic gist of how that monologue has gone.

Note to Grand Junction:  It can work.  It is working.  

Greg summed up our thoughts best, in a mock letter that he added to each time he slid back into the eddy to catch his breath:

"Dear Grand Junction: I'm moving."