Kayak Freestyle

Kayak Freestyle


This mainstay of the GoPro Mountain Games features the world’s best playboaters in an old-fashioned throw-down at the Vail Whitewater Park. 


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Event Overview

Thursday, june 10 – saturday, june 12

June 10 | 3:30 PM – Qualifiers
June 11 | 2:30 PM – Semi-Finals
June 12 | 4:00 PM – FINALS

Each kayaker has a timed run to throw his best cartwheels, loops, tricky-wu’s, phonics monkeys, space godzilla’s and more in an attempt to impress the judges for the highest combined score. Each competitor will have 1 minute to use their skills and athleticism in the park to try and score the most points possible.
IMPORTANT: Registration for this event closes Wednesday, June 9 at 6:00 PM.


Thursday, June 4

3:30 PM – Qualifiers

Friday, June 5

2:30 PM – Semi-Finals

Saturday, June 6

4:00 PM – FINALS

IMPORTANT: Registration for this event closes Wednesday, June 9 at 6:00 PM.



Open – Men
Open – Women

  • Athletes must be equipped with the appropriate boat, PFD and impact-ready helmet sufficient for shallow/rocky continuous whitewater conditions.
  • Composite boats, prototypes, C-1’s and hand paddlers welcome.
  • Athletes must wear competitor bibs outside their PFDs at all times. For athletes that place on the podium, we ask that you wear your competitor bib for awards.
  • Event organizers and whitewater rescue teams are not responsible for equipment rescue and/or equipment removal from the GoPro Mountain Games whitewater courses should athletes lose their equipment during practice or competition.
  • Athletes must have a solid roll to compete.
  • Women will compete first, followed by men. Starting order chosen at random. Special requests for start times will not be accepted. Athletes will be placed in heats, typically of five kayakers. Only the paddlers in the competing heat are allowed in the water during each heat due to limited eddy space. Paddlers who wish to perform an ‘entry move’ may start from an upstream eddy within sight of the judges’ platform, so long as the paddler can hear the order and see the ‘thumbs up’.
  • Athletes will have one (1) minute to perform their routine in front of the judges. The clock from athlete’s run will begin when the athlete enters the feature. Each athlete will get two rides. The scores from both rides will be added together to determine the athlete’s final score.
  • The top ten men and women (provided there are twelve or more) will advance to the semi-finals. In the semis, athletes will be judged on two rides, but only one ride will count.
  • Five men and women will advance to the finals. In the finals, athletes will be given three rides and count only one. The top three scores will be announced before the athletes take their third ride and after each third ride of finals to ensure every athlete knows the score it will take to podium.
  • The competition will be scored by three judges using the USA Freestyle scoring system (like ICF with more relaxed definitions for a wider range of skills). Each trick is assigned a difficulty point value and can only be scored one way in each direction. The tricks scored during your ride add up to form your ride score. The three judges’ scores will be averaged for one single ride score.
  • Rules are subject to change, if necessary.

The wave is on Gore Creek just below the International Bridge in Vail Village.

    • Athletes must wear a face mask in the compeition area at all times.
    • Athletes may remove their mask once their boat has been put in the water prior to the start of their round.
    • At the end of the round, athletes are asked to wear their mask.
    • Athletes will adhere to all physical distancing protocols around the competition area.
    • Spectating is discouraged.
    • For a full list of COVID-19 policies and protocols at the 2021 GoPro Mountain Games, click here.
    • All protocols subject to change based on updated state, county and local guidelines.

Price & Prizes


EARLY BIRD // April 9 – May 31, 2021

EVENT PRICING // June 1 – June 9, 2021



1st – $1,500
2nd – $1,000
3rd – $600
4th – $300
5th – $100

1st – $1,500
2nd – $1,000
3rd – $600
4th – $300
5th – $100


First place male and female Pro category finishers will win an epic piece of YETI gear!

1st, 2nd and 3rd place men and women Pro category finishers will receive a Mountain Games podium exclusive YETI Rambler!

Price & Prizes

Event Map

International Bridge (I-Bridge), Vail Village