+ Support Stevenson Beach

What do you think of expanding waterfront access at Stevenson Beach?  See below for CGWA’s comments in support of improved river access at this site.

June 30, 2010

Dear Recreation and Conservation Funding Board,

The Columbia Gorge Windsurfing Association would like to extend our full support to the Port of Skamania County in their effort to restore access to the Columbia River in downtown Stevenson, Washington.

The Columbia Gorge Windsurfing Association is a member-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit based in Hood River, Oregon, dedicated to enhancing the windsurfing experience throughout the Columbia River Gorge.  We represent 600 members from the Pacific Northwest, country, and world.

The Columbia River Gorge is home to some of the best windsurfing in the world.  The beauty of the surroundings coupled with unparallel water and wind conditions brings people from around the world to enjoy what no other place on earth can offer.  It is truly a top five windsurfing destination world wide.

However, due to poor river access conditions, the City of Stevenson has been unable to take full advantage of this unique opportunity.  Because the railroad tracks block river access throughout much of Skamania County, Stevenson presents one of the few potential launch areas that does not require dangerous (and illegal) crossing of the tracks.

The existing river access is small and treacherous.  A precarious and dangerously steep bank must be traversed in order to reach a small launch area; the situation is not only limited in user potential, but is also an accident waiting to happen.

Restoration of the riverbank with a safe and open launch area and an open, stable path would be a great attraction for everyone who uses the river.  We are happy to contribute to this goal by recruiting volunteers to help with work parties throughout the process when appropriate.

We fully commend and support the Port of Skamania for taking on this much needed task.

Thank you,

Katie Crafts

Executive Director