Exploring the river.
OK that's a bit melodramatic. ;-) But what better way to beat the heat during a long summer day then tubing on the river with a few of your best friends? My answer to that is nothing. I love being on the river. It’s one of the most relaxing and fun things I can think of doing on the weekend, besides fishing of course. The only thing that could make it any better would be to combine the two. Which I have done, but keep in mind hooks and tubes don’t mix.
My favorite place to be.
I may love to relax on my tube with friends as we go down the river, but my favorite place to be is under the water. I grab my flippers and goggles and see what’s there is to see. One of the things you will see often is fish. It’s interesting to see them because when you’re under the water with them there not as skittish as one might think. You can get as close as a few inches from them before they swim away. I'm not able to hold my breath for long so I can’t stay under for extended periods. But I do get to see many different things. I've seen everything from lost cell phones to car parts. Many empty beer cans and bottles. (some of which may have been mine) My boys are now starting to get into it as well. Which I have to say I love. Doing things together as a family is always more pleasurable.
Just a few things........
There are few things one must have in order to do this type of exploration. A good pair of gaggles are a must. I prefer the ones that only cover the eyes. I wear a pair of nose plugs in order to keep the water out of my nose. These are typically under a dollar a pair. I wear flippers as well; they are not a necessity however they do help to better navigate wile in the current of a river. You must be aware of your surroundings at all times. I've learned this lesson the hard way a few to many times. The river I swim is the Ausable river in Oscoda mi. This river has many submerged logs. Time and time again I have been going along my way and while I'm interested in something I've come across on the bottom, BAMMMMM I hit my head or arm or worse yet get folded in half over one of these logs. As with any river that is popular with tubers and canoers there are other hazards like broken glass. But then again there are hazards with anything you do. If you like to go fishing you could get a hook in your finger or maybe drown. All this aside I throw caution to the wind and do what I love.
If you don't have the gear, you can get everything you need in one neat package.......
In the future
One day I'd like to learn to scuba dive, and purchase the equipment needed to do so. If I ever have the funds to do so I would prefer a rebreather. With a rebreather you get less bubbles and have a much smaller package to carry with you on your back which is good for the shallower sections of river. But for now I don't see this happening. Even without all the fancy gear I will still continue to dive the river to explore, and pass the joy of it on to my boys. I hope that I have piqued your interest and if I have, give it a try with your family and friends this upcoming summer.