Water sports in landlocked Colorado? Why yes, Frisco has it all (sponsored) | SummitDaily.com

Water sports in landlocked Colorado? Why yes, Frisco has it all (sponsored)

And views are spectacular

Lauren Glendenning | brought to you by Town of Frisco
Stand Up Paddleboarding on Lake Dillon, Frisco Bay Marina, Frisco, Collorado
Todd Powell

Feel like teleporting yourself from the Rocky Mountains to California or Florida for a few hours? The Frisco Bay Marina can do just that. That’s what one online review recently said about a visit to the marina, which is a true gem not just for Summit County, but for all of landlocked Colorado. With a waterfront that offers 25 miles of shoreline, this body of water is an impressive stunner with mountain views to match.

Anyone enjoying Frisco’s charming Main Street just needs to head a little further toward Dillon Reservoir for an experience that runs the gamut in terms of water sports. Don’t feel like hassling with gear and equipment? No problem, just get a waterfront spot at the Island Grill and sip on an island-inspired cocktail, or stick your toes in the sand on the nearby beach, let the kids play and take in the views and fresh mountain air from 9,017 feet.

“Every moment during a vacation, or even life in general, doesn’t need to be programmed with activity, and the Marina is really an ideal place to embrace the idea of just forgetting about what you ‘should’ be doing and enjoying that you have the opportunity to lounge on green grass next to a lake with snow-capped mountain peaks in every direction,” says Vanessa Agee, the town of Frisco’s marketing and communications director.

For adventurous types looking to mix some aquatics into your Summit County summer plans, there are tons of ways to enjoy the lake by way of the Frisco Bay Marina. Anyone with their own watercraft is of course welcome to enjoy the water, too, just remember that water skiing and jet skiing are not allowed on Dillon Reservoir.

“This is really a place where the Marina staff will get you out on this very magical high-altitude lake on a watercraft, which may stretch your comfort zone a bit, but with great advice and direction that will set you and your family up for success,” Agee says.

Here are some of the ways to enjoy this special Rocky Mountain body of water, with a few insider tips.


The rental kayaks at Frisco Bay Marina are designed to be as stable as possible for users of all abilities, making this one of the easiest paddle-crafts for beginners. Single kayak rentals are $30 for two hours and $10 an hour beyond that, while tandems go for $40 for two hours. Kid-specific kayaks are available for children ages 7 to 12, with a tether available for parents to tow them, if desired.

“For people with their own watercraft, getting up early and heading out for a sunrise canoe, kayak or stand-up paddle is one of the most amazing ways to experience Dillon Reservoir,” says Tom Hogeman, general manager of the Frisco Bay Marina.

Stand-up paddleboard (SUP)

For first-timers, a great way to get used to the feel of a stand-up paddleboard is to sit or kneel on it as you paddle. If you’re feeling confident enough to stand up, just remember to loosen up a bit — a stiff, rigid stance almost surely equals an unplanned dip into the frigid water.

Frisco Bay Marina offers Glide stand-up paddleboards, which are stable enough to do yoga on for those so inclined. For a guided tour through Dillon Reservoir’s islands (this is also available with kayaks), call Adventure Paddle Tours at 970-281-2234, or visit http://www.adventurepaddletours.com.

Power boats

Whether you’re looking for a family-friendly day of leisure out on the water or a more adventurous fishing excursion, power boat rentals at Frisco Bay Marina have it all covered. Even first-time boaters can rent a powerboat at Frisco Bay Marina after an orientation — which is also presented for experienced boaters — by Frisco Bay Marina staff. Boat tours are also available for those who’d prefer to let someone else do the driving. Rentals start at $70 for two hours ($20 each additional hour) for small fishing boats and go up to $160 or $220 per two hours (plus $40 per additional hour) for larger pontoon boats.


The Frisco Rowing Center operates out of the marina during tranquil mornings from 6 to 10 a.m. This low-impact, full-body sport is a great way to get out on the water for some heart-pumping aerobic activity.

The Rowing Center offers lessons by appointment, sculling clinics and memberships — visit http://www.friscorowing.com, call 970-409-8435 or email friscorowing@gmail.com for details.


The Frisco Bay Marina rents fishing poles that come with a basic tackle box, rod, reel and line for those who don’t want a guided trip. You can even buy your fishing license — required for anyone over the age of 15 — and bait in the marina office.

A guided fishing trip is a special way to spend the day on Dillon Reservoir for those who would rather be hosted. Alpine Fishing Adventures has all ages and abilities covered with trip options for the whole family. Visit fishdillon.com.


Three types of sailboats are available to rent at WindRider of the Rockies at the Frisco Bay Marina. There are lessons available for all abilities, and tours for those who’d rather go along for the ride without doing much work. Visit http://www.windrider.us for details.

Crazy Colorado weather

What begins as a calm, blue-sky summer day in Colorado can quickly change into something a bit more chaotic. Things can change not long after you’ve left the dock, so the Frisco Bay Marina reminds guests to be prepared. While the marina takes safety precautions when it can — such as closing down rentals during high winds or inclement weather, and mandatory holds when there’s lightning — it’s still possible to find yourself on the water when the weather turns ugly.

“Common sense and experience are helpful in making good choices about when and where to go out on the water,” Hogeman says.

Don’t forget the following gear: sunscreen, water and a windbreaker for all water activities. For power boaters, extra blankets, clothing and stocked coolers are also recommended.

Plan ahead

Centrally located in Frisco, it’s easy to walk, bike or take the Summit Stage to the marina. On the Copper Mountain or Breckenridge buses, the closest stop is sixth and Main Street.

If driving to the marina on a weekend or holiday, plan to get there early as the parking lot often fills up by late morning.

Reservations for all aquatics rentals are highly recommended, especially on weekends. Visit friscobaymarina.com or call 970-668-4334.

Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

As a Summit Daily News reader, you make our work possible.

Now more than ever, your financial support is critical to help us keep our communities informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having on our residents and businesses. Every contribution, no matter the size, will make a difference.

Your donation will be used exclusively to support quality, local journalism.


Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.

User Legend: iconModerator iconTrusted User