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Multiple crossings closed on Provo River Parkway Trail

Posted at 9:35 PM, Jun 10, 2024

PROVO, Utah — High water levels forced Lucy Haws and Alexandria Kohler to change their plans Monday afternoon.

“We were going to park over there and walk from there, but we had to come over to this parking lot because we can't get through,” said Haws. “It’s so high.”

“I've lived by this river my whole life and I can't remember the last time I've seen it this high,” said Kohler. “It's going super fast.”

While many fear the strong current, Brayden Mortenson thinks the fast pace is exciting.

“Usually just looks exciting to me, having it flow pretty quickly and having the water level pretty high,” he said.

The city closed multiple Provo River Parkway Trail crossings this week.

“Sometimes with the high water, we end up having water going into those tunnels and we close those off so that people know not to go in there, and we're encouraging people to stay away from the river as much as possible so we don't have the fatalities, the problems that we've had earlier this week," said Gordon Haight, the city's public works director.

There are currently four closed trail crossings: the Geneva Road, Frontrunner and 2230 North undercrossings, and the Canyon Glen bridge.

“The peak looks like it's gone, so we're not so concerned with flooding at this point, but our major concern is the high water flow in the river and safety to people that are using the river, they're accessing near the river,” said Haight.

Those taking to the water are using extra caution.

“Know where you're going and exactly what you're doing,” said Mortenson. “We also told family and relatives what we're doing, where we're going to be, and with life jackets, make sure the rafts inflate as much as they should be.”

Tunnel flooding is normal in non-drought years, and Haight said the tunnels should be open by next week.

“We love this trail because it gives residents easy access to the river,” he said. “We don't put fences or barriers. There's something wonderful about walking next to water, and so we just encourage people as they're using the trail to use common sense. Don't go down into the river, don't try to get too close to it. Just enjoy it.”