The U.S. Forest Service (USFS) is warning river users and other recreators to use caution in White River National Forest this season, as high river flows are expected to create hazardous conditions.
According to USFS, high river flows could present challenges and dangerous situations for even highly experienced rafters and kayakers.
"Hazards can change day-by-day, including debris and tree snags that can trap people underwater and puncture rafts, dangerous currents, and cold water temperatures that can create dangerous situations for even strong swimmers," the release said.
Even recreators that are not planning on getting on the water should be cautions near White River, officials said.
"Normally small creeks are running high, and conditions can change rapidly. Swift streams are dangerous for all, but pay particularly close attention to pets and small children, and avoid getting too close to culverts," according to the release.
In a statement, Glenwood Canyon Manager for the White River National Forest, Colleen Pennington, urged the public not to overestimate their abilities or underestimate high flows.
"Know your limits. The river is unforgiving with high flows. Always wear a life jacket and use proper boats designed for white water – no inner tubes," she said.
High flows could damage more roads and trails this year than in typical years, according to the release. Visitors should not attempt to drive through flooded roadways, because the water could be deeper and currents could be stronger than expected, the service said.
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