It’s easy to understand the appeal of living on the water. When your property has access to a shoreline, you get to enjoy the natural beauty of the water day after day, along with other benefits like the wildlife that water may attract, and recreational opportunities like fishing, boating, swimming, and more.

Of course, to continue to enjoy these things well into the future, you need to make sure that your shoreline does not erode away. Water is constantly in motion, and that motion will eat away at your shoreline if you don’t take steps to protect it. One option for such protection is a riprap wall, so let’s look closer in this article at what that is and whether or not it will be a good pick for your situation.

At North Idaho Pavers, we are experienced with the task of creating riprap walls for our clients, along with many other types of projects. If you would like to learn more about our services, or if you want to schedule a time for us to come out and look closer at the potential job, simply contact us today to get started.

What is a Riprap Wall?

A riprap wall is a carefully created rock shoreline that features large, angled stones. Once it is in place, a riprap wall can offer a pleasingly natural appearance for something that was installed by man and not Mother Nature. This is a particularly popular option for property owners who have land that is fronted by a body of water, such as one of the many lakes that dot North Idaho.

Managing erosion is often the top motivation for using a riprap wall, but that’s not the only reason to consider this option. You might also like what a riprap wall offers in terms of an attractive shoreline solution that looks better than a constantly muddy strip of dirt between the water and the landscaped parts of your property. Also, if you’d prefer not to have little critters wandering around your shoreline and making a mess, a riprap wall will likely cause them to go look for another area where they can explore the water.

Evaluating the Situation

If you have property with a shoreline, you may have considered a variety of different solutions to maintain that shoreline in a way that fights erosion and looks good at the same time. A riprap wall might be the right pick in this case, but that’s not a sure thing. You’ll need to consider the specific factors at play before making your final choice.

Riprap is a great pick for a relatively flat shoreline that sees a regular flow of water against the shore. So, this might be an area of a river where the water is moving gently but consistently day and night, or it might be the shore of a lake where boats go by and the wind whips up some waves. If you have a shoreline that sounds like one of these situations, stabilizing that shore with riprap could be the perfect answer.

One potential drawback to think about with regard to riprap is the difficulty of walking over this type of wall once it is in place. The large, angular stones that are usually used for riprap can leave gaps between one another, making it hard to walk across the surface for both people and animals. So, riprap typically isn’t preferred when the shore needs to be accessed often, but it can be used in conjunction with other features to produce the desired result. One example would be a lake shoreline where a dock juts out into the water. The dock can be used for direct lake access while a riprap wall on either side cuts down on erosion and provides an appealing look.

If a riprap wall doesn’t prove to be the right choice, you might want to opt for a standard retaining wall instead. This is another possibility for erosion control and tidying up a shoreline. It doesn’t necessarily offer the visual appeal of a riprap wall made of beautiful stones, but it can overcome challenges like a steep slope and maintaining access to the water. A traditional retaining wall could serve you well for years and could even be used along with a section of riprap wall to create a complete solution for your property’s shoreline.

Have the Job Done Correctly

If you decide that a riprap wall is right for your situation, the next step is to make sure you choose the right partner for the job. This can be tricky, as plenty of contractors will be quick to say they can manage the project, but not everyone has the combination of experience and equipment to bring it together properly.

Above all else, you want to make sure your chosen contractor has plenty of experience. You don’t want to go back and try to repair or improve your riprap wall after it is installed, so getting it right the first time is critical – and that will be most likely when you team up with an experienced contractor like North Idaho Pavers. From sourcing the materials to preparing the site and putting the rocks in place, we are up to the challenge at each step along the way.

Riprap walls can be a great solution, but they are not the right pick in every case. Let the expert team at North Idaho Pavers help you decide if this or another option is the way to go based on the property you own and the condition of your shoreline. Every project we complete delivers value to our customers and exceeds expectations at every turn. We’d love to hear from you right away!