Stand up paddle boarding or SUP is a relatively new activity that was created in Hawaii as an offshoot of surfing. The simplicity of standing on a board with a single paddle makes this a great choice for the whole family. With a number of picturesque lakes and rivers in the Crested Butte area, it’s easy to see why SUP is growing in popularity. Wish you could SUP the river right from home? Only 6 the lots close to town are available in the Augusta Park neighborhood with its own river access.
Please be aware of surrounding land near rivers and lakes. Sometimes the land is private property or can be a sensitive habitat that should not be disturbed. Minimize your impact by sticking to established put-ins and take-outs, and be sure to get info from local rental shops on rules and regulations for SUPing in certain areas.
Please be mindful of containing your trash while you float. If there is wind or your board tips, any waste that isn't strapped down will fall into the water and will pollute nearby environments. Please help keep these pristine river environments clean from trash.
- Remember to never take glass bottles or containers into outdoor areas
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Looking to head out? Below are a number of locations where you can SUP from Gunnison all the way up to Crested Butte.
|Emerald Lake||Gothic Valley, near Schofield Pass||Stunning lake that sits at 10,400 feet|
|Lake Irwin||Kebler Pass||Beautiful views of Ruby Peak and Mt. Owen|
|Lost Lake||Kebler Pass||High alpine lake with camping|
|Taylor Reservoir||Taylor Park||Views of the west facing sides of the Collegiate Peaks|
|Long Lake||Washington Gulch||Popular swimming spot|
|Blue Mesa Reservoir||Gunnison||Largest body of water in Colorado; endless coves to explore|
|Slate River||Crested Butte||The winding river that flows through CB. Popular put-ins are at Gunsight bridge and the Town Rec. Path, take out is at Skyland (Brush Creek Road Rec. Path).|
|Spring Creek Reservoir||Taylor Canyon, then left on Spring Creek Road||(Drained Summer 2021 for repairs) High alpine reservoir offering views of mountains and camping|
Interactive Google Map
Floating the Slate
There is a voluntary no-float period on the upper Slate River thru 7/15 to protect a critical nesting period for the Great Blue Heron.
Do not exit your vessel onto land at any point during the float except for at put-in and take-out locations. The land is private property and leaving your vessel is considered trespassing.
The lower Slate River put-in is by the Town Recreation Path bridge down Butte Ave. The put-in for the Upper Slate (not beginner friendly) is at Gunsight Bridge. The take out for both of these floats is at the Skyland Pedestrian Bridge off of Brush Creek Road and Hwy 135.
The depth of the Slate River declines as the season progresses. Floating the Slate River is not advised after the end of July, although it's best to check with local rental shops to find out what the depth is before departing.
Ready to paddle the mountains? Whether you are a first time paddler or already love to SUP, Wheelies & Waves has something for everyone. Guided adventures, rental boards and gear, and expert advice can be found at both their Crested Butte and Gunnison locations. They even sell the awesome paddle boards they rent.
Featured Neighborhood w/River Access
The Slate River meandering through your backyard. Magnificent views up Paradise Divide and down the Gunnison Valley. Aperture is the only place where you can enjoy the best of mountain living with the convenience of being located just steps from Crested Butte's historic downtown.
Featured River Access Properties
The Slate River meandering through your backyard. Magnificent views up Paradise Divide and down the Gunnison Valley. Augusta Park is the only place where you can build your dream house and enjoy the best of mountain living with the convenience of being located just steps from Crested Butte's historic downtown.
Featured Realtor & SUP Athlete
From floating the Slate to paddling Long Lake, Jenna gets out on the board whenever possible. She also holds both a Texas and Colorado real estate license. Jenna strives for quality and attention to detail while professionally and ethically protecting her clients interests' from start to close, making their home buying and selling processes painless, understandable, and enjoyable.