June 10, 2015
Salt River. Wow! What a terrific day we had floating down the Salt River. It almost didn’t happen due to the weather but again, as usual, the rain didn’t happen and the clouds kept us in the shade all day.
Judy’s nieces, Mariah and Ariana came for a visit from Nebraska and she wanted to show them a good time experiencing all Arizona has to offer. This was a great idea. Nancy took her 2 grandkids, Isacc and Christian, and June’s daughter, Jessica and grandson, Grady . We rented tubes from Salt River Tubing Company that also supplied a shuttle to and from the river. June’s grandson, Grady said the bus ride was the best part of the whole trip. The buses are very old and rattled the whole time. I could see where he would be enthused about it.
The minimum age is 8 years old for this few miles down the Salt. However, the tubes supplied are adult size so the kids hung on to them like a swimming pool noodle. Not too much danger in this area as most of the time they were able to walk on the bottom. However, a couple of us felt better with a floatation device on. There were about 5 places light rapids had to be maneuvered and the kids loved them! So much fun and excitement.
We took little 6 pack ice coolers and hung them over the side with rope. June brought a full size cooler but did have a few issues when she got too close to the bank. About half way down the river we stopped and enjoyed our picnic lunch and had a great time watching people but Judy’s granddaughter, Mariah found it more entertaining to use a holey lunch bag to try and catch minnows. While trying to catch them she came up with a baby crawdad too. Soon the other kids wanted to participate and they too were able to catch some small creatures. Christian followed Mariah’s example of catching little minnow’s in a plastic baggie. He was very excited to get one and wanted to take it home and keep it for a possible future fishing trip. Mariah said he would be able to keep it alive in a plastic bottle with the lid off. On the way home, he left the plastic bottle in Judy’s car. The next day he asked if we knew how Larry was. He named his minnow Larry.
Sunscreen applied often or totally covering up is a must. 3 hours floating down the river can really give you a burn. Sheets or large towel covering the tubes seemed a little more comfortable but not necessary. Umbrellas were helpful also. A good idea the next time is to rent tubes with a big bucket attached for holding all our extra stuff. We saw other people with them to hold big speakers to listen to music. We didn’t really appreciate the noise but the kids seemed to really like it.
Nancy brought huge marshmallows we used to bomb each other and others floating down. The kids thought that was way too much fun. Nothing like a slimy marshmallow thrown at you. When the marshmallows got too small the birds swooped down and had a tasty treat.
We saw so many unusual birds. Black and white Cranes, Red Winged Black Birds, Cardinals, and Roadrunners, just to name a few. Also, 4 wild horses watering at the river’s edge.
We left Phoenix around 9:30 and got back around 5. What a great day!
- Put all supplies in zip lock baggies and keep your ID in a really secure dry place.
- Ice Chest(s)
- Rope to tie ice chest onto your tube. Bungee cords work at some things.
- Drinks: Water, soda, etc.
- Snacks, Picnic lunch
- Huge Marshmallows
- Money, ID. Tubing Company only takes cash and you have to leave your ID so they know you’ll bring the tubes back.
- Optional: Towel or sheet to cover tube
- Optional: Floatation Device
- Paper Towels for all sorts of issues
- Hand Sanitizer
- Zip Lock Trash bag