Re: Float tubers....ASSEMBLEEEEEE!
I've used floatubes for along time. I had a cheapie that was a good intro and I used a lot til...I don't know... it shrank...or something and it just wasn't floating me as high as it used to. I was shipping water in the back of my waders.
I up graded to a U tube that was rated for 300+ pounds. I haven't had the shrinkage problem with this one. It is a bit more "Deluxe" than the old one- it has three inflatable back support pillows. I figured out right away that the main effect of the top back support is to continually knock your hat off, so that one went away. The second or third time I used it was below the bridge at Silver Creek. I had a good time- watching hundreds of huge feeding trout as far as the eye could see- stop feeding as soon as I raised my rod tip. After that bit of fun, a HUGE and constant wind came directly downstream and I discovered the function of the other two back support pillows: They create a "sail" to help the wind send you where it will. I barely made it back to the bridge take out.
I knew a guy who took a tube in trade for some computer work. Nobody told him that he was supposed to have fins...He tried it out on a large Idaho lake and earned a 5 mile walk home in his waders when the wind came up.
My own secret tubing horror isn't inimical creatures or weather phenomena. Have you ever noticed how the low buck spin rods in the box stores are always loaded with 15 and 20 pound test? 'Course, with line that heavy, Joe Learner Wormer has to load about a half pound of lead on the line to cast waaaayyy out there. And of course, that much weight gets irretreivably hung on the bottom waaayyy out there leaving Joe no choice but to cut it off leaving 50 yards of mooring cable drifting. I've always dreaded the idea of getting tagled in some of that stuff in a tube. Maybe hooked. Too deep/too far out/too cold to drop out the bottom of the tube and unable to reach to cut myself loose. Or going over trying to reach to cut.
"Every [child] has the right to a first fish. On this particular planet, no man is granted a greater privelege than to be present and to assist in the realization of this moment". Bill Heavey