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Summer is almost here, which means it's the time of the year when you a) float down a river in a relaxing tube ride or b) get thrown off tubes from a wild (but safe!) towable tubing ride. The best towable tubes are made from heavy-duty material, are budget-friendly, and take on just about any riding experience -- but they're best for attaching to a boat and taking to the river for a unique adventure.
Tube Types -- And Which One Is Best For You
There are many types of tubes -- but for this article, we're focusing on flat tubes, high-walled tubes, and one very unique shape. Flat tubes are used for lying down on your stomach -- so if you go that route, you should be familiar with tubing (this one's not for beginners) and love a fast-paced ride with lots of thrill. There are also tubes designed with high walls and seats for sitting on your bottom or knees -- those tubes are perfect for kids or for anyone who wants a more relaxed ride. And finally, the hot dog tube might sound funny, but these odd-shaped tubes allow for more riders (typically up to five riders), so it's perfect for big groups. No matter what kind of tube you go with, be sure everyone can swim and everyone is wearing life jackets. If you're practicing water safety, this is a great activity for all. This summer, schedule a lake day with a tube and get ready for an unforgettable water day -- here are six of the best towable tubes that tubers swear by:
1. Best Flat-Deck Tube
Up to three people can ride on this tow tube from Airhead. The one-of-a-kind tow system easily connects the tube to the rope, and the six deluxe nylon-wrapped handles with neoprene knuckle guards are definitely a plus -- having non-slip handles is essential for staying on the tube as long as possible. The bolster fins help keep riders on the tube, even during the most high-speed thrilling rides, and there's a patented speed safety valve for quick and easy inflating and deflating, making this a hassle-free inflatable towing tube. When shopping for tubes, know you can never go wrong with Airhead.
2. Best High-Walled Tube
We love this option for kids. When water lovers get comfy with the water, they'll want to tube in different riding positions, but for little ones, let's keep it safe (but still fun) with a tube that allows them to sit down. The side walls will give kids a sense of security as they're tubing. This pick is for 1-2 riders and is also from Airhead -- so it has the same specs as above, like the quick-to-connect technology and speed safety valve for easy inflating and deflating.A customer said it's a great pick for kids who are scared of flat-topped tubes. One reviewer wrote: "This was the best tubing for our family! We have kids aged 18months-9 and all were able to ride on this tube without a panic of slipping off and it's got a deeper "seat" area that is very comfortable."
3. Best High-Walled Option for the Thrill-Seeker
We love the second option for kids since the seated area provides more security. However, we like this seated option for all levels of riders. It offers more flexibility for bigger riders -- and reviewers say it gets lots of air -- but still allows riders to feel safe as they sit down and ride. This is perfect for someone who wants a little bit of adventure but aren't comfortable trying a flat tube.