Ada County Parks and Waterways officials say the official 2017 Boise River Float Season in Barber Park opens this Saturday, July 29th!
All Barber Park services including the Boise River Raft and Tube equipment rental and shuttle service will be fully operational. Equipment rentals open at 10 a.m. and the first shuttle departs Ann Morrison Park at noon.
“History has already been made with this late season opening date -- due to the higher-than-normal river flows and the amount of hazardous debris that was in the river after spring flooding,” said Ada County spokeswoman Kate McGwire. “Prior to this season, the average opening date was June 22nd -- and the latest opening date on record was July 15th, 2011. This year, the flow in the river peaked at 9,660 cubic feet per second on June 6th, and has remained much higher than average since then.”
Now that the Bureau of Reclamation’s required flow augmentation is nearly complete, flows will finally decrease from 1,800 cfs and stabilize around 1,000 cfs by the end of this week, officials said. “This will bring the river down to an appropriate level for novice floaters, while providing the Boise Fire Department with a window of opportunity for one final debris sweep of the designated floater segment between Barber Park and Ann Morrison Park before the official opening,” McGwire explained.
Officials are reminding floaters that the Boise River is never free and clear of all potential hazards -- and is a “float at your own risk” endeavor.
Outside temperatures may be hot, but the river is cold and swift -- so proper clothing, footwear, and a well-fitted personal floatation device (PFD) are recommended for all floaters. Children ages 14 and younger are required by Idaho code to wear an approved PFD. Alcohol and glass containers are prohibited on the Boise River and floaters must use the designated take-out location on the river left in Ann Morrison Park.