Joel and Andrew Parliment enjoy tubing Thursday afternoon while they have most of the river to themselves. The river is flowing slightly above its historic average for this time of year.

Photo by Scott Franz

Joel and Andrew Parliment enjoy tubing Thursday afternoon while they have most of the river to themselves. The river is flowing slightly above its historic average for this time of year.

Yampa River flows slightly above average as outfitters report busy season

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— The Yampa River near Steamboat Springs still was flowing above 190 cubic feet per second Thursday, and local river outfitters reported that after some recent summers of drought and floods, this year has been sort of a dream season.

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"We've been having regular rain and we had a better-than-average snowpack. It doesn't get any better than this," Backdoor Sports owner and tube renter Pete Van De Carr said.

Johnny Spillane at Steamboat Flyfisher reported the fishing has been pretty consistent, and recent rains have helped to keep the temperatures in the river ideal.

"It's also been a really good season for fishing with grasshoppers," he said.

The Yampa's current flow is slightly above average for this time of year.

It's running about 50 cfs higher than it was at the same time last year, 100 cfs higher than it was in 2012 and 260 cfs below what it was running at in 2011.

That year, record spring snowpack delayed the start of the tubing season until July 27.

It started July 3 this year.

On Friday, the river is expected to stay above 100 cfs for at least the next week and a half.

The commercial tubing season comes to an end when the river dips below 85 cfs.

Last year, the season ran a few days past Labor Day.

On Thursday, Joel and Andrew Parliment appeared to have much of the river to themselves as they floated slowly under the bridge on Mount Werner Road.

The river could get crowded again this weekend with the forecast from the National Weather Service calling for a mostly sunny day Saturday with a high of 79 degrees.

To reach Scott Franz, call 970-871-4210, email scottfranz@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @ScottFranz10

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