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A river runs through Los Angeles. Seriously.

August 9, 2011 |  9:52 am

Three years ago, the Army Corps of Engineers had plans that would have exempted parts of the Los Angeles River from clean-water regulations. A biologist with the corps tipped people to the plan, then took a protest paddle down the river, which was illegal. She got in hot water with the corps, and eventually left.

How things have changed. Monday, the colonel in charge of the river took to a kayak with elected officials, inaugurating a pilot program to allow the public to paddle at least a short section of the much-maligned river. Soon, you'll be able to do it too. If you're willing to pay, and wait.

"I'm actually out on the water and not worried about getting arrested for it," quipped City Councilman Tony Cardenas, one of the dignitaries paddling a stretch in the Sepulveda Basin on Monday.

More details on Paddling the Los Angeles River.


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Photo: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Col. Mark Toy, commander of the Los Angeles district, is among the first people to legally explore the Los Angeles River in decades. Credit: Arkasha Stevenson/Los Angeles Times