VISIT CLEAR CREEK SAFELY
Clear Creek runs through the heart of Golden, offering scenic beauty, recreation, and a valuable natural resource. In recent years, many visitors have started visiting Golden to enjoy tubing activities along the Clear Creek Trail. Many visitors and residents also enjoy cycling, walking, and kayaking along Clear Creek. Golden strives to provide an enjoyable and safe experience for all. Please help us to protect this amazing resource and ensure everyone has an enjoyable experience.
Visit Golden and the City of Golden do not rent tubing or kayak equipment or manage an online reservation system for tubing. If you need to rent water sports equipment – like tubes and life jackets – we encourage you to visit a local tubing rental company: Adventure West River Tube Rental, Golden River Sports and Golden Goods.
Current Status: GREEN as of 7/13/22
Creek Safety Status
Look for colored flags along Clear Creek that correspond to the safety levels on the Creek Warning Flags sign.
- Green Flag: Moderate Flows – Clear Creek is open to all uses. Please use regular caution in the creek
- Yellow Flag: Moderate to High Flow – Considered unsafe for children under 18. Clear Creek is open to all uses. Please exercise heightened caution while in the creek.
- Red Flag: High Flow – Clear Creek is closed for swimming and tubing. Only experienced kayakers and other vessels should be on the creek. Users should wear protective gear and be able to rescue themselves in the water. High caution should be used in the water.
- Double-Red Flag: Closure – Clear Creek is closed to all uses. This is a combination of high flows and other unsafe conditions, such as low temperature or debris in the water, that makes Clear Creek unsafe for all uses.
Rules & Regulations
- Pick up your trash and recycle
- Water conditions vary. Please use lifejackets and water safety gear
- Be aware of trail traffic and signs
- Use designated Creek access points
- Pedestrians and Tubers should use the NORTH side of the Clear Creek Corridor Trail.
- Keep trail traffic moving: travel single file and avoid stopping to congregate
- Cyclists must go 8 mph or less on North Side trail and give audible signal and slow down to walking pace to pass
- Faster traffic, particularly cyclists, should use the SOUTH side of the Clear Creek Corridor Trail
The City enforces the following rules:
- NO dogs off-leash
- NO smoking or Vaping
- NO glass OR alcohol
- No single-use plastics in the Creek
Read more about the rules and regulations that apply to using any of our many beautiful parks on our Park Rules page.
Plenty of FREE parking is available in the Clear Creek Parking Lot, located at 304 10th St., at the intersection of 10th & Archer Streets. RVs may park there during the day. Overnight parking is prohibited. The Clear Creek Parking Lot is strongly encouraged for visitors and users of the Clear Creek Corridor. Other parking is available in the parking garages located on Jackson Street, between 11th and 13th Streets.
Parking west of Washington Avenue along 10th St. in Golden and in the neighboring community is paid and permit parking and requires a permit for residents or registration using the ParkMobile phone app on Apple or Android.
Please remember that the Golden Community Center Parking Lot is reserved only for Community Center visitors and will be enforced. The parking lot west of the City’s ballfields on 10th Street will be used only as a drop-off and pick-up lane for Creek and park users.
If you’d like to park upstream from the City of Golden in Jefferson County, Jefferson County Open Space recently opened a free lot at the Gateway Trailhead west of Highway 6.
Share the path! Be cognizant of others around you - walking with a large group carrying tubes? Walk single file so others may enjoy the trail too.
Tubers/Pedestrians – use the north side of the trail! Cyclists and other fast traffic – use the south side of the trail! To keep the trail safe for all users, please note that the north side of the trail is for tubing and pedestrian traffic, and the south side of the trail should be used by cyclists and other fast-moving traffic. For reference – the north side of the trail is the side of the Creek where you find the Visitor’s Center and City Hall, and the south side of the Creek is where you can find the Golden History Museum Park, the Golden Hotel, and the School of Mines’ Marv Kay Stadium.
Leave the alcohol and glass containers at home! Open containers of alcohol are strictly prohibited in our parks, and all along the Clear Creek trail and in the Creek. Leave your alcohol at home, and be sure to visit one of our great dining and drinking establishments when you're done recreating. See our dining options.
Dogs must be leashed at all times. Golden has an enforcement policy for dogs off-leash. Please remember to keep dogs leashed and scoop the poop. Golden has two dog parks. You can enjoy the natural beauty of North Table Mountain at the Tony Grampsas park or let your dog run free at Homer’s Run dog park at Ulysses Sports Complex.
Creek Ambassadors – Clear Creek Ambassadors are City of Golden employees who are stationed along the creek during the weekends who can provide information and direction to creek goers. You can find these helpful representatives by the beaches and the Billy Drew Bridge by looking for their flags and uniforms. The Clear Creek Ambassadors have information on how to access the creek, how to get to where you want to go in Golden, and how to make the most of your day in town!”
To report any concerns about trail maintenance or park issues, or to give feedback about your experience on the Creek in Golden, please call 303-384-8074 or email Creek@CityofGolden.net.
To report criminal, or non-emergency issues please contact the Golden Police department at 303-980-7300.
Clear Creek Corridor Use and Parking Map (download for printable version)