- Paddlers will need to supply their own craft.
- Paddlers must be familiar with the boat they are using.
- Paddlers must have a Personal Flotations Device (PFD) for each paddler or boat occupant plus the swimmer. This means if you have 2 paddlers, you need 3 PFDs.
- Must be physically able to paddle for up to 3 hours without stopping.
Do not bring a swimmer into your boat. This may (and has) capsized the paddler boats, which then adds 1-2 more people to be rescued.
Should the swimmer need assistance, throw the swimmer a PFD and signal a rescue craft.
If you are confident about the stability of your boat, you may have the swimmer hold onto the boat. The best locations for this is the bow or stern of the boat. This is not recommended.
Should your swimmer need assistance and you need to get additional help, signal by raising your paddle into the air and waving it back and forth in addition to blowing the whistle provided. The Larimer County Dive Rescue team will be watching for these signals and will come to help.
Similarly, paddlers should not wave their paddle in the air to signal to a friend on shore. A waved paddle will bring Dive Rescue rushing to you. We do not want them to rush around if not needed. Generally they will drive slowly to reduce wakes, but in an emergency that will not be the case.
You are not being asked to play referree in the swim. By the same token, try to encourage swimmers to not break the rules.
Try to be alert for signs/symptoms of a swimmer having troubles either due to exhaustion or hypothermia. With later stages of either the swimmer's judgement is impaired so they will be relying on you.
Always be aware of where other paddlers and swimmers are with respect to you. We don't want paddler/paddler or paddler/swimmer collisions.
Be at the start early. There will be a quick pre-race (morning) meeting for all paddlers about 15 minutes or so prior to the start of the race to go over last minute details.
Paddlers should ideally place themselves between the swimmer and any boat traffic. At inlets. stay close to your swimmer than you would normally do. Boats will see you much more than the swimmer.
Be familiar with the course, you will be more aware of where you are relative to the finish line than the swimmer.
Be aware of what coves you are passing and do not enter any of them until at the finish line (at the dam).
Have fun! Horsetooth is a nice lake to paddle in, and since you won't be going all that fast, you'll have plenty of time to look at the scenery as well as all those crazy swimmers!
Things to consider bringing in your boat
- Sweatshirt/sweat pants/fleece (or other warm clothing)
- Food/water for yourself (in addition to the swimmer's)
- If the weather is cold or wet, bring hot fluids to drink for yourself and for your swimmer
- Whistle (provided by the race committee)
- Map (provided by the race committee)
- Cell phone (some service is available on the water)
Canoe/Kayak Rental Shopes
The following shops in Fort Collins rent canoes or kayaks:
Rocky Mountain Adventures
1117 N. US Highway 287
Jax Outdoor Supplies
1200 N. College