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L.A. River opens to kayakers, fishermen

May 28, 2013
  • Agnieszka Pietruszkiewicz, 27, of Los Angeles, kayaks on the LA River, near Marsh Park on the Los Angeles River.
Agnieszka Pietruszkiewicz, 27, of Los Angeles, kayaks… (Francine Orr / Los…)

Steve Schleier has kayaked spectacular and scenic rivers from West Virginia to Alaska. So when the Los Angeles lawyer heard that his hometown river was opening to public navigation for the first time in decades, he was all in.

It didn’t matter that the open section is a mere 2 1/2 miles long. It didn’t matter that the riverbed is lined with concrete. And it didn’t matter that the course features more warehouses than white water.

For Schleier, like many Angelenos, the opening of a modest piece of the Los Angeles River on Monday was all about redemption and possibility.

“Today,” he said, preparing to put in at Rattlesnake Park, where Fletcher Drive crosses over the water, “is like getting your toe in the water for the revitalization of the river.”

-- Lisa Girion, Los Angeles Times

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