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Tubing is one of northern Wisconsin’s favorite summer water activities. While there are a variety of types of tubes and styles of tubing, single tubing and double tubing are the most common. When considering what type of tubing you would like to participate in you should consider three areas: equipment and cost needed to tube, the style of tubing, and the safety issues involved in that type of tubing.

Single tubing is cheaper than double tubing. You do not need a big boat with a lot of horsepower as you do with double tubing. For example, a couple years ago my grandparents bought themselves, well really the grandkids, a new boat with about fifty more horsepower than the old boat. This allows the boat to take tighter turns, produce larger wakes, and pull more tubers. Nonetheless, only one tube is needed and the quality of the tube is not as important when single tubing because you are not banging it up against another tube. When considering equipment, only one rope, one life jacket, and one tube is needed. Single tubing may be more economical but, it may not be as fun and adventurous as double tubing.

When single tubing you are dependent on the driver of the boat to determine how exciting your ride will be; his speed, style, and ability to drive the boat. Double tubers have both the driver of the boat, and the other tubers to assist in creating an adventurous ride of bumping and pushing each other to see who can last the longest on the tube. While double tubing, you can either go off colossal waves, try to throw each other off the tubes, or play catch, either with the other tubers or the people in the boat. Whilst double tubing is obviously more exciting, it can also be more dangerous.

As you are double tubing there is a greater opportunity for unforeseen accidents, such as; bloody noses, rubber and rope burns, and twisted body parts. Single tubers only need to worry about themselves and no other tubers smashing into them when they fall off the tube. Double tubers on the other hand need to worry about another tube and the person on the tube. However, sometimes you actually need to worry about more that just the other tube and tuber, sometimes you need to worry about a couple other tubes and tubers. Starting this previous summer the teenagers always ride with at least two tubes, sometimes even three or four tubes, which adds to the fun, but does increase the risk of an injury even further. On the other hand, there are people who still prefer the “cocktail cruise,” which is usually done with just one larger than average tube moving at slower knots. It is obvious that double tubing is a little more dangerous then single tubing but the fun of it can out weigh the safety issues for most young people.

Tubing, while one of summers more exciting activities, can be enjoyed by all types and ages of water lovers. Single tubing is for those who are more laid back, safety conscious, have a small boat and limited discretionary income and double tubing is for the adventurous group of water lovers with a big boat, money to spend on good tubes, and body parts to spare. It is always great to see multi-generations out on the lake; there is nothing funnier than seeing your parents being thrown off a tube.