Denver might not be located near an ocean, however, that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy water sports here.
You might be wondering how? Well, quite easily as there are 41 State Parks in the state of Colorado offering you some of the best outdoor recreation opportunities including water sports. Your two best options for water sports are Cherry Creek State Park and Chatfield State Park, Barr Lake State Park and Smith Lake in Washington Park are two others. City Park has a couple of Lakes too; however, they’re good for paddle boating only.
You can enjoy all types of water sports ranging from paddle boats to power boats, sail boarding to Jet Skiing to plain sailing to river running, canoeing to white water rafting to rowing to snorkeling to scuba diving and swimming. It all depends on you. By the way, a permit is required to launch any boat on a Denver Lake and the permit sticker must be displayed on the right side of the boat.
Barr Lake State Park
Again, there’s something for everyone – from fishing to boating – Barr Lake offers 1,950 surface acres of quiet, calm waters. Boating and fishing is not allowed south of the buoy line as the southern end of the lake is a dedicated wildlife refuge. The northern end is open to several water sports including boating, sail boarding and canoeing. However, only sailboats, hand-propelled craft and boats with electric trolling motors or gasoline motors of 10 horsepower or less can run on the Lake. May and June are some of the best months to do sail boarding on the lake.
Berkeley Lake Park
Boating, water skiing, sailing, canoeing, rowing and kayaking is permitted at the Berkeley Lake Park. You can run boats less than 12 feet on this lake including canoes, kayaks, rowboats and small sailboats.
Chatfield State Park
A marina, boat rentals and a floating restaurant are some of the features of this state park. All types of water sports to boating activities ranging from pleasure cruising to fishing to canoeing to sailing are allowed, however, boating remains the most popular activity. Moreover, you can enjoy Jet Skiing, Sail Boarding, Water Skiing and even swimming in the lake. The swim beach is located on the west end of the reservoir and is open from 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM Memorial Day through Labor Day. Facilities include changing rooms, coin-operated showers and restrooms including a lap lane inside the swimming area for open water swimming.
Cherry Creek State Park
Boating is closed for winters, however, you can book your space from March 1, 2010 onwards weather permitting. The Cherry Creek Marina offers complete choice of activities and concessions including boating lessons and bait during the summer season.
Smith Lake, Washington Park
Boating, Water Skiing, sailing, canoeing, rowing and kayaking is permitted at the Smith Lake, located in Washington Park Denver. In fact, it’s the natives’ favorite park. You can run boats less than 12 feet on this lake including canoes, kayaks, rowboats and small sailboats.
Sloan’s Lake Park
Legend has it that Sloan Lake was created accidentally when a farmer Thomas F. Sloan dug a well and unintentionally tapped an underground aquifer back in 1886. Sloan’s Lake is located on the western end of the Denver metropolitan area – near the suburbs of Lakewood, Edgewater and Wheat Ridge. You can run boats longer than 12 feet and motorized boats with a maximum of 330 horsepower. Water skiing, sailing, canoeing, rowing and kayaking is also allowed. Sloan Lake is also the venue for the famous Dragon Boat Festival which draws thousands of people to this annual event.