Montrose Water Sports Park


The Montrose Water Sports Park was completed in 2015, thanks in part to a $259,000 grant from Great Outdoors Colorado (GOCO) that was obtained in partnership with the Montrose Recreation District.

The park was designed with all citizens in mind – from ankle waders to expert kayakers. It features six drop structures, terraced spectating areas, and beach areas. 

Design work and the required permitting for the park were completed in 2014. River structures were finished in early 2015.

Project Funding

The Montrose Water Sports Park was created with the help of a $259,384 grant from Great Outdoors Colorado (GOCO). The project was one of eight that were selected from a statewide field of 51 project proposals that were submitted under GOCO’s Spring 2013 Local Parks and Outdoor Recreation grant cycle. A strong intergovernmental collaboration involving the Recreation District, County, and City distinguished the proposal from others in the extremely competitive grant cycle.

In addition to a significant cash match provided by all three GOCO-eligible entities, the project had the support and involvement of other key partners: the Colorado Department of Local Affairs, the Montrose Recreation Foundation, LiveWell Montrose-Olathe, Friends of the River Uncompahgre, Welcome Home Montrose, and the Montrose Community Foundation.

Grant and Project Scope

The project scope included the Montrose Water Sports Park itself, nearly 2,000 feet of concrete trail, 1,900 feet of soft-surface trail, and signage along the river. Montrose citizens chose a whitewater park and river trails as their highest priority projects during the Uncompahgre Riverway Master Plan process that was completed in early 2011.

Two additional citizen surveys showed widespread support for the other project components that include a sensory playground, fitness stations, picnic tables, and baseball/softball field enhancements at the Ute/McNeil Fields.

View the original project plans

Fish Habitat

Prior to the construction of the Water Sports Park, the City completed the construction of compensatory aquatic habitat improvements on the Uncompahgre River at the upstream end of Riverbottom Park.

The goal of the project was to increase fish populations through this reach of the river and provide additional fishing opportunities for residents and visitors. The aquatic habitat improvements included re-grading of approximately 1,500 linear feet of the river channel, constructing four riffle-pool-glide sequences, and the addition of numerous habitat-boulder clusters.