The Paul Stock Aquatics and Recreational Center, or the "Cody Quad Center" as it is generally called, opened in July 2001. The 105,000-square complex offers swimming, three basketball courts, two racquetball courts, a running/ walking track, and exercise machines. The swimming area offers a large leisure pool, lap pool, therapy pool, and hot tub. The leisure pool features a teardrop, tumble bucket, and water slide for children. These water toy features are only operational from 3:30 - 8:00 P.M. weekdays, and 12:00-4:00 weekends. The center also offers day care for parents using the facilities, and locker rooms. Normal operating hours are 5:30 A.M. - 10:00 P.M. Monday - Friday, 8:00 A.M. - 8:00 P.M. Saturday, and 12:00P.M.-8:00P.M. Sundays.
Attached to the Cody Quad Center is the Victor J. Riley Ice Arena and Community Events Center. This 33,336-square foot area is used as an indoor ice rink in the winter and spring, and a convention center during the summer and fall. Call 587-1681 to inquire about times that the ice rink is open for public use.
InYellowstone Park canoeing is allowed on Yellowstone Lake, Lewis Lake, and Shoshone Lakes, as well as some smaller bodies of water within the park. No boats are allowed on any river inside the park except the waterway between Lewis and Shoshone Lakes. A permit must be obtained before launching your canoe. Check at the Canyon and Mammoth Backcountry Offices, Bechler Ranger Station, and at the West and Northwest entrance gates for these. Permits are $10 per year or $5 for seven days. A Coast Guard-approved life vest is required for each person in the canoe. Be aware that high winds may appear suddenly and the water temperature is very cold in the park, so crossing large expanses of open water is not recommended.
Another area where canoeing and kayaking can be enjoyed is Bighorn Canyon Recreation Area near Lovell. (See my Off the Beaten Path: Scenic Drive to Big Horn Canyon section.) You can launch at Barry’s Landing and paddle north through 400-foot sheer cliffs for miles toward Yellowtail Dam in Montana. The water is very deep at 150-200 feet. The canyon is fairly narrow so that it feels more like paddling through a river than a lake, but unlike a river there are no noticeable currents. Winds and storms, however, can develop suddenly. Because of the sheer cliffs in most areas it can be difficult to stop along the shore in many places, so be sure to check weather reports before venturing out, and as always wear your life vest.
The Bear Tooth Highway also will carry you to canoeing opportunities. (See my Off the Beaten Path: Scenic Drive Through Sunlight Basin section.) Although there are a number of beautiful small lakes in this area, you will find that many are too far from the highway, or too small to canoe on, but a few are accessible and make for a pleasant excursion. Again beware of the water temperature.