This post contains our tubing tales from two different whitewater parks. We will highlight both LaVern M. Johnson Park in Lyons and the Poudre River Whitewater Park in Fort Collins.
LaVern M. Johnson Park, 600 Park Dr., Lyons, CO 80540
LaVern M. Johnson Park in Lyons has it all. Aside from the natural beauty that surrounds you, they offer RV and tent camping, covered and uncovered picnic areas, sand volleyball, a playground, splash pad, ice rink in the winter, restrooms, and a whitewater park for tubers and kayakers to drop in and enjoy the ride. Aside from the giant sunbathing snake on the side of the river that had Keegan yelling “Ahhh, Snake Nest!” every time the current pushed us toward the bank, we had hours of adventure. This was Keegan’s first time tubing and I still laugh when I think about his reaction to the cold water, the rapids, and the impending doom of being swallowed up by the “snake nests.” The entire time we were floating, Keegan was screaming for his life, then the second he had his feet planted on solid ground, he was begging to go again. We dropped in and floated seven or eight times that day and loved every minute of it! The water moves pretty quickly, so I recommend tying your tubes together to not lose a group member down the river. After, we enjoyed an early dinner at Pizza Bar 66 on Main Street before heading home. Keegan has asked to go tubing every weekend since!
Poudre River Whitewater Park, 201 E. Vine Dr., Fort Collins, CO 80524
When we set out for Fort Collins, we were expecting a tubing adventure similar to the one we experienced in Lyons. However, the Poudre River Whitewater Park is more of a swimming area than for river tubing. There are two small rapid areas that Keegan enjoyed riding down. The water was moving much slower than in Lyons, so Keegan was comfortable tubing down on his own, with one of us ready to catch him at the bottom. But, you definitely don’t need tubes to enjoy an afternoon in the cool water here. The river was deeper in the middle, which made it possible to jump off rocks into the river as well. We visited on a hot August day and it was pretty crowded with families, some even brought their four-legged fur babies to swim. There are some shady areas to set up camp under the trees but I imagine you’d have to get there pretty early to score a spot. Although it wasn’t what we were expecting, we enjoyed a few hours of exploring a new spot before hitting up DQ and treating ourselves to some dipped cones before hitting the road home.
For those with unsure and beginner swimmers, we felt safe and comfortable with Keegan in his Puddle Jumper floaties at both locations.
Stay tuned for upcoming video footage of KEEGS adventures, including clips from both of these tubing locations.