Tubing

VAAL RIVER
All year. Class 1 to 4: Various routes, mild to wild

Come tubing on Geckos, the latest type of river craft!
CONV1-FROM VIDEO TUBING SUEnKAREN 6JAN2015 xSCORPION2233
Our tubing trips are raft-supported for your safety and to allow you to jump on a raft when you get tired.

We call the tubes Geckos – a locally developed craft by Ark Inflatables that is ideal for fun in rapids.

Give Geckoing a Go!

We use Geckos, which are actually small pointed boats with a floor. It is not safe to use conventional tractor tubes in a shallow, rocky river, but the Geckos are fine. No experience is needed. The tubes are no longer round rubber donuts but oval-shaped to give the occupant more directional control. You can lie on them lilo-style, sit or kneel. They bounce through whitewater and are easy to steer, using hands as paddles.

We include tubing in our rafting trips. At safer, fun rapids we throw the tubes off the rafts and there you go! With the rafting option you can choose whether to tube, and where to tube.

Tubing is very physical. On flat water, paddling a tube is hard work. On moving water, it’s adrenaline stuff! 

We provide padded lifejackets and close fitting helmets, and you are advised to wear long sleeves and tackies both against the sun and the rocks.

During winter it’s wetsuit time and although the water is colder the days tend to be warm and sunny.

The big difference between past and present is that the tube has become a sophisticated little boat. It doesn’t just spin and bounce off rocks.

It can be – must be – steered. In the old days tubers were called “hole bait” because a big round tube falling into a stopper or hydraulic would just stay there, presenting every chance of drowning the occupant.

This is tubing at its best. Families and couples love it. Share the fun with your loved ones as you take a spin down through the waves and quiet pools.

You are at water level, close to nature, sharing the life of the river. The Vaal is a paradise for many birds including fish eagles and cormorants, while sometimes we spot otters.

 When and where to tube

There is a difference with rafting that needs to be highlighted immediately. Rafters like wide-open channels with big standing waves and fast water.

Tubers are more likely to be found negotiating canyons and restricted, rocky sections of rivers where rafts cannot go.

Indeed, the companies that operate rafting trips sometimes turn to tubing in the dry season when rivers sink down into their channels and become narrow and rocky.

We’ll advise you, taking into account your physique and the state of the river.

 

  

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