SALIDA, Colo. — Salida, Colorado, is in the heart of the Rocky Mountains, however, Mike Harvey says it's the perfect place to open a surf shop.
"Seven-thousand feet above sea level and I think it’s safe to say we’re the highest-elevation surf shop in America," Harvey said.
Harvey, along with Zack Hughes, opened the Badfish Surf Shop in downtown Salida where they have all the gear a person could ever need for a person to enjoy some tasty waves and surfing in Colorado.
"Colorado, in the last five or six years, the amount of white water parks and the opportunity to river surf is pretty incredible," said Hughes.
It's why some say Salida is a great surfing destination and the Badfish Surf Shop is in a great location, just about a one-block walk from the Arkansas River, where there’s an engineered wave some say is the best river surfing in the country.
"In a river, the water is flowing downhill in this case over an engineered structure that creates a standing wave," said Harvey.
The wave works best at lower flows which is why people are surfing in Salida all year long, even in the winter and more people are getting into river surfing.
“There’s a ton of growth in river surfing,” said Harvey. “It’s the fastest-growing segment of River sports in Colorado right now.”
It’s a big reason there’s now a surf shop in Salida, where the spring runoff is coming up and the surf business is expected to rise with it.
“Surfing is the original American action sport,” said Harvey. “This is a way to do it in the mountains of Colorado.”
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