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Additional use benefits businesses, guides parks staff in planning for the area's future

CONTRIBUTED PHOTO - Barton and Carver parks are popular spots for river recreation during the summer months.

Summer brings river rats to Barton and Carver

The stretch of the Clackamas River between Barton and Carver is a popular spot for recreation during the summertime. The additional use benefits nearby businesses and is guiding Clackamas County Parks staff as they plan for the future.

"Summer recreation blows up Barton, and it blows up Carver," said Rick Gruen, parks and forest manager for Clackamas County.

Mary Briant, an employee at the Barton Store, noted that business significantly increases during the summer months.

"We get to be slammed. It's non-stop," she said. "The parking lot is full with rafters. During the winter, we're slower."

She added that the store's additional sales often come from deli items, but it sometimes varies.

The county's parks department is in the early stages of creating a master plan for Barton Park, one of the goals is to ease the flow of traffic at the park during the summer by potentially creating separate roads for campers and day-use visitors to enter through, along with additional pathways for bikers and pedestrians.

Sgt. Brian Jenson, public information officer for the Clackamas County Sheriff's Office, noted that deputies often perform focused patrols in the area during the summer months.

"Anytime we hear about the big float events (on the river), we want to ensure that everyone has a good time and is being responsible," he said. "Anytime we know of a large gathering, we want to be there to ensure safety."

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