River Run Park is a brand new pair of river surfing waves on the South Platte near the Broken Tee Golf Course in south Denver. The upper wave (Benihanas) is a high-speed, dynamic wave that gives up great rides but can be challenging to surf for beginners. Once you have it dialed though, it may be the highest-performance wave in the state. It features a wave shaper – a set of three adjustable plates underneath the water that allow the wave to be dialed for particular flows. At higher flows (from 250 cfs to ???) the wave creates a large A-Frame wave that can run from waist to chest high.
Given the high water speed, some surfers have been having success with wakesurf boards and other short craft. The lower wave (Chiclets) is a friendlier beginner wave/hole. Changes in May 2017 have transformed the feature from a fairly flat wave/hole to a taller wave with a small green face.
The spring of 2017 will be the first time River Run Park sees high flows; it will be interesting to see what kind of rides it gives up, and how high the feature is still surfable. Shaped appropriately, at 500-600 cfs it’s still good to go, with a high, narrow, big-shouldered v-wave.
The South Platte Below Union gives the best gauge here; look for 165+ for the upper wave, and over 200 gives a much better opportunity for longer rides. In its earlier form, the lower wave could be surfed on a paddleboard all the way down to 60 cfs, but improvements at 130 cfs have led it to green out at low flows.
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You can also get a peek at what’s coming down from Chatfield by keeping an eye on the Chatfield Outflow gauge. Changes will take 2-3 hours to reach RRP.
The park shares a parking lot with the Broken Tee Golf Course; just park as close as you can to the river.