For our wedding anniversary, Alex and I went tubing down the San Marcos River. Tubing is one of the more popular group activities to participate in during the horrendously hot Texas summers. The San Marcos River, as well as the Guadalupe and Comal River, have some of the best spots to tube down. Some trips can take up to 4 hours! In our case, we went to Texas State Tubes to rent our tubes for the trip. Their location was close to home, their prices were fair, and I wanted to use a service well-known to fellow Austinites.
Texas State Tubes is located in Martindale, Texas and provides shuttle services for folks wanting to travel from Austin to San Marcos (well, Martindale) for a tubing excursion. We decided to skip the shuttle and drive to the location ourselves, our dog Capu pacing excitedly in the back of the car for the entire 50 minute trip. We chose Texas State Tubes due to their early bird special: tubes are $11 to rent each, regardless of size. This allowed us to rent a tube for ourselves, our dog, and our cooler. This special alone will get me coming back to this particular tube rental spot.
After renting our tubes, the owner of the rental place drove us up the river to their launching site. While we traveled, the owner was kind enough to share his experience in purchasing land in San Marcos. I was thrilled to hear him chuckle about the challenges getting the “perfect spot” on the river, which no doubt is what made his business so popular. Upon reaching the launch site, we were greeted by a mountain of colorful tubes. Collecting our stuff, we tied the tubes into a make-shift raft, lifted the unwilling dog into the raft, and launched ourselves into the river. Texas State Tubes’ dock was waiting for us 3 hours down the river, so we kicked back with a few beers and munched on some cold sliders. Turning to Capu, I went ahead and shared the story about how Alex and I first met 3 years ago. I don’t think the dog really got it but he seemed pleased with his doggy snack while I talked.
The San Marcos River is pretty lit. The banks are lined with an endless assortment of thick, bushy foliage. The trees are huge and deeply rooted into the banks of the canal. Several times we had to kick off their massive roots to get back on course. Many times I caught sight of trees that had finally keeled over, but from their roots, new branches sprouted eagerly towards the sun. Several parts of the river churn with small rapids and I flipped over in my tube several times. I’m bruised and scraped up, but whatever. I had a blast. The dog and cooler were the only tubes that never tripped on the rapids, Alex quipped to me when we arrived at the dock hours later.
For 5 additional dollars, we could have ridden the river again. However, 3 hours was enough for Alex so we had to head back home. I was disappointed; I had been having so much fun! Even so, I’ve already made plans to go tubing again, maybe on my birthday next month. Since we don’t have those endless chores that come with running a homestead, at least right now, I hope to take advantage of some of these excursions. It felt so good to float in the cold water. Have you ever dove down and listened to the sound of your heartbeat traveling along the churning current? I felt recharged after returning from the river. I hope to enjoy more experiences like this in the immediate future.
If you’re looking for a place to rent tubes and go tubing down the San Marcos River, we recommend hitting up Texas State Tubes. Their early bird special, only available during the first hour of opening (on Sundays 11am), is so worth is. The entire river trip takes 3 hours and you can go in large groups! You can eat and drink, yes this counts adult beverages, as you travel down the river. However, drinks must be in aluminum or plastic; no Styrofoam or glass is allowed in the river. Friendly dogs can swim to their heart’s content. The kids for sure will love the tiny rapids. Also, Texas State Tubes will shuttle you from Austin to their site and to the launching dock as well! I mean how convenient is that.
As always, be kind and tender to one another.
The Toasted Rabbit is not being paid for promoting Texas State Tubes. We just loved our anniversary trip so much that we can’t help but recommend them to you. Images, as well as the Featured Image, were provided by Texas State Tubes utilizing content from their website.
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