For more than 30 years, the Columbia Gorge Windsurfing Association has advocated for windsurfer’s needs for access to the Columbia River and for affordable access for children and adults to equipment, so they can learn the sport. To that end, we work with State Parks, Port Districts, City and County government entities, local schools, the Tribal organizations, and the Corps of Engineers to acquire, design, build and maintain waterfront access points. Nearly every sailing site has been influenced by the CGWA and we maintain great relationships with all the interested parties to help with continued maintenance and improvements to these sites. (download our site map on this website!)
With the advent of new water sports that are enjoying the fruits of the CGWA’s efforts, we hope that all these new user groups join us in these efforts by becoming active members and volunteers at our events.
The CGWA partners with Oregon and Washington State Parks in “Adopt-A-Park” cleanups every spring and fall at the busiest State parks, and a few years ago the CGWA purchased the Swell City property to ensure continuing access at one of the windiest places in the Gorge. As owners of this valuable access point, we continue to improve our facilities there for visitors and members’ enjoyment.
In 2017, we helped the Port of Arlington as they constructed a beautiful new launch, complete with ramps, parking, and infrastructure so windsurfers, kiters, foilers, and paddlers could easily get into the water at one of the widest and most scenic stretches of the river out in the desert. A few years ago, we worked with the Port of Hood River to construct a walk-in ramp at the Hook, enjoyed by a wide variety of watersport enthusiasts to get into the river there.
Our fundraising events each year include Swap meets where we sell donated used equipment at very affordable prices so anyone can get geared up for fun on the water. Our Pray for Wind Party in June raises money for our youth program equipment needs, and we keep our new 24 foot storage trailer full of sailing and paddling gear at the Hook for families to use. We sponsor the “King of the Hook” freestyle event and the Gorge Cup Slalom Series at the Event Site in Hood River.
Our Groms program helped 55 families get their kids on the water at the “Hook” in the summer of 2017, by providing rigged sails and boards, wet-suits, life-jackets and helmets for anytime access in our parent supervised program.
This summer (2018), we will be hosting two “Get on Board” events to showcase windsurfing and other local watersports at the Bingen Marina on June 23rd and at the Event Site on June 30th. Both events will be followed up with dance concerts as part of our fundraising efforts
Currently we are aspiring to create a safety boat program to support water assistance/rescue on the river in the busiest areas, to reduce the burden to local Sheriff departments for “assistance” calls, and we welcome support for this project from everyone who enjoys the river.