BW Staff Pick: Best Urban Whitewater 2018

Boise Whitewater Park

The Boise River is perhaps the city's most important resource, used for irrigation, recreation and everything in between. Locals fish, swim and float on the river, but more adventurous souls also take advantage of a section at its heart that has been carefully teased by the City of Boise Parks and Recreation Department into a prime spot for surfing, kayaking and upright paddle boarding: Boise Whitewater Park. Phase 1 of the park has been open since the summer of 2012, giving the public access to different kinds of waves and eddies courtesy of a Wave Shaper device, but Phase 2 is still underway, and promises to make the park bigger and better than ever, adding an extra half mile of waterway that will feature whitewater at multiple difficulty levels plus spots for wading and habitat restoration efforts. The planned section, called "Reach III: River Runner," will likely be the best practice spot yet for paddleboarders and kayakers. According to the BWP website, it will offer "easy access directly into and out of the river ... and a canal [that] will connect the river to Veteran's Pond for paddlers to head back up to the top of the park and repeat." If you're an adventure junkie looking to get your water sports fix, head out to the BWP and put the city's $7 million-plus experiment to the test.

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