Getting to Know Our Inner Tubes

This week’s non fossil fuel burning activity: hydropower, a.k.a. floating on inner tubes down the Coast Fork of the Willamette River.

Never mind that we drove cars to put in and take out.  We car pooled, OK?  I’ll protect the privacy of my 2 friends by not sharing the photo of us setting off.  Not that we don’t look fantastic for ##ty-somethings in our bathing suits. You just have to take my word for it.  In our place, the Golden Sisters:

Back to our expedition.  You know how you always read about people who get into trouble when they float on inner tubes on rivers?  Let’s just say the first two hours were fantastic.  Unfortunately we prepared for one hour.  Total.  So, the second two hours…

Hey, anyone could make this mistake. It’s only two miles!  Look:

We’re talking from the “i” of Willamette to the “i” of River.  Who could have predicted that there was barely any current and that the water was mostly 6 inches deep?  OK, maybe we erred a little on the conservative side in choosing a stretch where we were unlikely to drown.

It is BEAUTIFUL, and we’ll do it again, but next time:

  1. start earlier
  2. wear footwear good for walking in water
  3. bring food
  4. bring water
  5. bring a change of quick-drying clothes
  6. bring a first aid kit
  7. bag the trip if it’s less than 80˚ outside

From the above list you can reach your own conclusions about the second two hours.

Any inner tubers out there who want to add to the list of floating necessities?  Feel free to share your summer snafus adventures.

Update on my quest to bicycle 104 times in 52 weeks.  Week 18:  rode/commuted 2 times.  Grand total:  50 (14 rides in the bank).


  • That is absolutely beautiful Julia! I too have tubed down several rivers, in fact I’ve also river-rafted up to class #4 rapids. Ah, those were the days. I think the lazy current of a river sounds more like it now. It sounds like you all had a great time. That’s awesome! Thanks for sharing these photos and your experience! Take care! 🙂


    • Oh man. Class 4?!? You are an animal. Although I don’t actually know what that means, it sounds intimidating. Thanks for the visit.


  • I’ve never tubed down a river but I have rafted a few times, up to class 4 and walked around the class 5. 😀 That didn’t look like fun to me. Swirly and scary. LOL. 6 inches, seriously? I think I would have been laughing like those ladies in the video. That was a crack up, btw. Sounds like it was learning experience. You’ll be better prepared next time. 🙂 Enjoyed the post.


  • Thanks Debra. Another Class 4 rapids runner! I am impressed. On my bucket list, but I’m a little scared to try rafting. Best wishes.


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