02
Jul
10

SwittersB’s ‘Duh’ Moment (Float Tubes in Currents)

Like the Obama Administration releasing a soon to be buried statement, I too am releasing damaging information (to my uh, well established reputation, tsk) on a weekend and holiday weekend to boot. I am doing this in the interest of safety and for the equally less alert amongst you. I feel obligated to remind you that an impoundment or ‘lake’ above a dam spilling water is really not much of a lake when you are in a float tube. There is a current, even if not immediately evident. It soon becomes evident as you kick and kick without little effect and draw nearer toward the spillway.

Now, I was ok at first, a good quarter mile from the dam. I kicked out and eventually felt that current, but struggled (yes, it was a lot of work) to kick up into an area without much current. I came upon weed beds and trout eager to take a green WB skimmed across the top of the weeds on an intermediate line. As I looked out across the lake back toward the rig it occurred to me that I had to get back across that lake and that current. Well, for now time to fish. I focused upon the retrieve and take, caught fish and felt good. But, I kicked out away from my quiet back water and once I looked up to assess my surroundings I realized I had moved a considerable distance and toward the spillway. Time to move. I kicked and kicked. I kicked more. I dug in and worked as hard as I could like grinding out reps. I was getting no where near where I needed to be and only moving closer toward that last barrier (heavy stretched out ropes) one attempts to grab before spilling down the ‘chute’.

One thing floated between me and that last grasp. A drift boat. A couple was fishing in the anchored boat.. I assessed the emerging decision. Pride, self prescribed stupidity, embarrassment…..so, I asked if they could help me. There I did it. They saw my fatigue. They saw I was gaining unintended speed. They tossed the bow rope; I grabbed it and came to a halt. They upped anchor and rowed me out of harms way. I paid my heart felt thanks several times over. I arrived at shore exhausted. My legs fried, my body tense, I had planned poorly. The tattoo on my arm says Semper Paratus…I pride myself in that.

What seems obvious enough now, didn’t settle in before I stepped foot in the water. A dam that is spilling water is not containing a stable body of water. Had I been in my normal pontoon boat with oars, I would have rowed out through all this subtle turmoil and anchored in likely place. Lesson learned…whether in a float tube or pontoon boat. Oh! Floatation Devices too!


5 Responses to “SwittersB’s ‘Duh’ Moment (Float Tubes in Currents)”


  1. 1 SwittersB
    July 5, 2010 at 08:02

    It is a less frequently found Simms FF cap. I have two camo caps I like…the Simms and a Primo hunting cap. That plus one T is the extent of my camo.

    Like

  2. 2 SwittersB
    July 4, 2010 at 09:35

    Well, it is an anti-detect SwittersB hat to be precise, commonly known as a camo hat…..yes.

    Like

  3. 3 Ken
    July 2, 2010 at 23:37

    You recently remarked about the efforts needed to use the pontoon boat. Sounds to me like you exerted a huge amount of effort using that float tube this time around and would have appreciated those oars!!!?

    Ken (Rosemont, California)

    Like

  4. 4 Frank
    July 2, 2010 at 23:33

    Thanks for sharing your unforeseen duh moment. I have had similar moments. Big winds on lakes have put me far away from my truck. I can recall several frightened moments in tubes, pontoons, and row boats in which I honestly thought I was about to perish. Two things: big winds require a quick response back to safety. And, safety equipment. You did not mention a flotation device. Make sure advise readers to carry one. Thanks again for sharing the awkward times. Most wouldn’t dare provide the details of their ‘stupid’ oversights.

    Frank
    Tridell, UT

    Like


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