Everything You Need to Know About FIBArk

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FIBArk is one of Salida, Colorado’s signature events that brings almost 20,000 visitors to the town every year. If you’re unfamiliar with it, FIBArk stands for First in Boating on the Arkansas and it began in 1949 with a 57-mile race down the Arkansas River. After extreme conditions made it difficult for participants to complete the race, its length was shortened to 25.7 miles, at which it currently stands. Today, in addition to the classic race, the festival includes a number of events, including bike races, SUP championships, and much more. It remains the longest whitewater race in the country as well as the oldest whitewater festival.

Not only will you be able to see some amazing competitions, but you’ll be able to enjoy the carnival that’s held in downtown Salida. Complete with rides, games, a parade, and quintessential carnival food, it’s a family-friendly event with a little something for everyone. There will also be arts and crafts vendors, a beer garden, and free live music. While this year’s music lineup hasn’t been announced yet, stay tuned! We’ll update this posting when the schedule is announced. With all these great events, you won’t be disappointed if you decide to check out this unique festival.

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Where to Stay During FIBArk

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Creekside Chalets and Cabins is a popular choice among festival attendees for a number of reasons. Our cabins and chalets are just a short drive from Salida, so you won’t have any problem getting into town quickly and easily. They make a great home base for exploring the area, which boasts a variety of great summer activities. There are hiking and biking trails nearby as well as opportunities for ATV rentals, zipline tours, and more. Each cabin has all the comforts of home, including fully equipped kitchens, LED TVs, and gas fireplace stoves. You’ll also be able to enjoy relaxing in your own private hot tub when you stay with us.

As an added bonus, our property is pet-friendly, so you are more than welcome to bring along your favorite four-legged friend. If you do and if your pooch loves swimming, you might want to head to the Crazy Dog Competition. It’s held on the last day of the festival and the dog who retrieves items out of the river the fastest wins.  

This year, the festival is scheduled for June 15th through the 18th and as you can probably imagine, lodging in and around Salida fills up quickly during FIBArk. So, if you haven’t booked your lodging yet, now’s the time!

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Where to Park in Salida

There will be a good amount of free parking available in town for FIBArk spectators. You can park in the Arkansas Headwater Recreation Area lot, which is located at G Street and Sackett Avenue. The available lot faces G Street. There is also parking available on 2nd Street between G and I Streets (next to the Monarch Spur Trail).  You’ll find another lot at 323 West 1st Street.

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FIBArk 2018 Schedule

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Thursday, June 14th

TIME
EVENT
LOCATION
1:30 PM Cadet Freestyle Start Salida Boat Ramp
4:30 PM Boater X and Cadet Freestyle Awards Steamplant Patio
5:00 PM Raft Sprint Starts Salida Boat Ramp
6:00 PM Tenderfoot Hill Climb Starts F St Bridge
6:00 PM Raft Rodeo Starts Salida Boat Ramp

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Friday, June 15th

TIME
EVENT
LOCATION
9:00 AM Freestyle Preliminaries – Junior M & W Start Salida Boat Ramp
11:00 AM SUP SURF COMP The Office Wave or The Scout Wave
11:00 AM FREESTYLE EXPERTS Salida Boat Ramp
12:30 PM FREESTYLE OC1 & C1 Salida Boat Ramp
1:30 PM FREESTYLE FINALS – JUNIOR M & W Salida Boat Ramp
3:30 PM FREESTYLE PRELIMS – PRO M & W Salida Boat Ramp
5:00 PM VIP PARTY
6:00 PM 8-Ball Ralley

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Saturday, June 16th

TIME
EVENT
LOCATION
8:00 AM 5 & 10 K RUNNING RACES START
8:30 AM KIDS FUN RUN START
9:00 AM Slalom Races First Run Starts Salida Boat Ramp
10:00 AM FIBARK PARADE
10:00 AM Breakfast Booze Bar Opens
1:00 PM SUP CROSS Salida Whitewater Park
12:00 PM BMX event Salida Skate Park
3:00 PM FREESTYLE PRO SEMIFINALS Salida Boat Ramp
3:30 PM SUP CROSS AWARDS
4:30 PM SLALOM FINALS Salida Whitewater Park
5:30 PM HOOLIGAN RACE Salida Boat Ramp
5:30 PM Bike Jump Salida Boat Ramp
7:00 PM FREESTYLE – PRO FINALS Salida Boat Ramp
7:00 PM SLALOM AWARDS FIBArk Awards Platform
Near the Salida Boat Ramp
9:00 PM FREESTYLE AWARDS CEREMONY Steamplant Patio

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Sunday, June 17th

TIME
EVENT
LOCATION
8:00 AM FIBARK 10K TRAIL RUN F St. Bridge
8:45 AM DOWNRIVER CLASSIC START, RAFTS ONLY
9:00 AM DOWNRIVER NOVICE START, ALL CLASSES
9:15 AM DOWNRIVER INTERMEDIATE START, SUP ONLY
9:30 AM DOWNRIVER INTERMEDIATE START ALL OTHER CLASSES
9:45 AM Down River CLASSIC Start, ALL OTHER CLASSES
9:30AM Boater X Registration Open – RAPID #4
10:00 AM MOUNTAIN BIKE RACES F St. Bridge
10:00 AM Breakfast Booz Bar Opens
10:30 AM Boater X Competitors meeting – RAPID #4
10:30 AM CHAIN DRAIN DISC GOLF TOURNAMENT Poncha Springs
11:00 AM Boater X Time Trials – RAPID #4
12:00 PM CRAZY RIVER DOG CONTEST Salida Boat Ramp
12:30 PM Boater X Head to Head – RAPID #4
1:00 PM SUP BOXING
3:15 PM DOWNRIVER AWARDS CEREMONY FIBArk Awards Platform
Near the Salida Boat Ramp
5:00 PM FESTIVAL CLOSES See You Next Year!

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