GOLDEN, Colo. — In the middle of summer under the blazing sun, David Hajoglou likes to visit his playground known as Clear Creek in Golden.
"Anyone who sees the water, they want to get in, it's naturally alluring," he said.
Though Hajoglou is his name, he says everyone calls him Hojo. For Hojo, the fast-moving water presents some excitement for him and his kayak.
"So, it's a challenge. I came out here today to practice," Hojo said.
While Clear Creek is still open to kayakers with proper gear like life vests and helmets, it is restricted -- keeping swimmers and inner tube riders out.
"The water is high. It's fast. It's definitely not something that people should get into unless they have a bit of knowledge and the proper gear," Hojo said.
Alexander Lidiak is a graduate student at the Colorado School of Mines. He and his friends are taking in the day sitting alongside Clear Creek.
"This is the highest I've ever seen it in three years here," Lidiak said.
While he appreciates the warnings, Lidiak says Clear Creek doesn't look too bad to him for tubing.
"It would probably be pretty fun. It would be a little intense. Getting up and off might be a little tricky," Lidiak said.
His friend, Eric Jones, says the restrictions make sense.
"As a land mammal, I would be a bit wary of it, yeah," Jones said. "I think in general it's a good idea just having people be cautious near the shoreline."
Last week on Clear Creek, a tuber was swept away and had to be rescued downstream by an employee at the Coors plant. Around the state, it appears that the total of water-related deaths has climbed to 11 since late spring with an incident reported Saturday on the Green River on the Western Slope.
"I think it's very sad that people have gotten hurt," Jones said.
Despite the allure for people to go into the water right now, Hojo says it's no game hanging out in his playground.
"It's one of those things that anyone falling in water anytime can perish if they don't know what's going on," Hojo said. "It doesn't really matter what the conditions are."