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Get On The Water

The Yampa Valley boasts crystal clear lakes, snow cooled rivers, and unique hot springs, all of which make this such a special place. When you're ready to cool off, or warm up, check out our tips for getting on the water in Steamboat.


Need to cool off after a fun filled day of activities? Take a river tube down the Mighty Yampa. There are two ways to do this and both offer a really fun experience. Please keep in mind that the river will close to tubing at some point during the summer. 

Tubing Outfitters – There are a few companies in town who rent tubes for the day to visitors. Our favorite is Backdoor Sports. They will rent all the gear you need to stay safe and give you a ride to the drop off location and pick up after your tube. Keep in mind, this is the shorter & easier option for a river tube. Also, to keep the river from becoming overcrowded, there is a limit on the number of trips the commercial tubing outfitters are allowed each day, so be sure to reserve your spot on the river to avoid disappointment

Drop In On Your Own – If you want to avoid the tubing outfitters, you can easily tube the river on your own or with a group. Make sure to buy a river ready tube from plenty of local outfitters (Christy Sports, Walgreens, Walmart) and get it inflated on site. You can park at any of the free parking locations along the river and leave your car for two hours. We suggest dropping in at either the Walton Creek Road park or Fetcher Pond. Also, it’s a good idea to drop a car downtown to pick everyone up and the best place to park and get off the river is either the Library or Stockbridge Transportation Center. You can also catch the free Steamboat Springs Transit bus back to either of these parking lots.


Steamboat Springs and surrounding Routt County has some of the best fly fishing in the West and we're proud of it! With multiple spots to fish throughout town and quite a few fly shops to help guide you, you can't go wrong with fishing in Steamboat. Check out our fly fishing guide for more info. Please keep in mind that river closures may happen in the warm summer months and could impact the fishing.


When the Yampa River calms down after the spring runoff, this is a great time to get on the slow-moving parts and try out paddle boarding. You can also take your board out to Stagecoach Reservoir or Steamboat Lake or try out one of the small ponds in town. Check out Paddleboard Adventure Company for guided trips and board rentals.


If you’re visiting Steamboat during the late Spring/early Summer, you may get some good spring snow runoff to make the Yampa pretty mighty! Be careful and make sure to link up with one of our favorite local companies to plan a trip.

Mountain Sports Kayak School – leads group adventures or you can rent a kayak for the day and explore.

Bucking Rainbow – takes rafting groups out on local rivers across Routt, Moffatt, Grand & Eagle Counties.


Looking for a fun way to spend a day enjoying the outdoors? Rent a pontoon boat on either Stagecoach Reservoir or Steamboat Lake and chill out with the whole family. Keep in mind these are mountain snow-fed lakes so they can be chilly but they warm up nicely by the end of the summer.

Stagecoach Reservoir – A 20-minute drive south of Steamboat Springs, Stagecoach State Park is a quiet lake with a marina that offers boat rentals for a day of fun in the sun. Record-sized fish have been pulled out of Stagecoach, and the calm waters are perfect for paddle boarding and wakeboarding before a picnic on the shore.

Steamboat Lake – Driving north out of Steamboat Springs through rolling ranch lands and dense pine forests, small, historic towns like Clark and Hahn’s Peak lead the way to Steamboat Lake, a vast recreation area with no shortage of fun activities for the whole family. With the stunning Hahn’s Peak always in view, boating, fishing, waterskiing and other water sports are all great ways to enjoy a day out on the lake under the Colorado sun.


Steamboat Springs is home to many hot springs, a few that you can visit anytime. Check out our Hot Springs page for full tips on where to take a warm dip and the best time to visit each hot spring.