Gramma goes tubing

Despite having been born in Minnesota and living in the Land of 10,000 Lakes the first decade of my life, I'm not big on water sports. To any degree. Due in large part to being unable to swim... even after having swim lessons as a child and again at 40 years old.

I'm not deathly afraid of water, but I certainly don't seek out splishy-splashy fun in water over my head. Not even water up to my chest, to be honest.

So it should come as no surprise that I've never whiled away hours in an inner tube on a lake. Nor have I engaged in tubing down river rapids of the slightest degree—with the exception of the Lazy River ride at Water World.

That all changed on Saturday. I'm proud to say that I have now officially gone tubing! And I have the pictures to prove it.

Brianna invited Jim and me to spend Saturday with her, Patrick, and James at one of their favorite mountain camping spots near Tarryall Reservoir, an hour or so from Colorado Springs. Our dog Mickey as well as Brianna's Max and Hunter went along, too, which made for an ideal respite for people and pets, far from the summer heat baking our A/C-free homes.

A panoramic shot of our spot at Happy Meadows Campground near Tarryall.

And an ideal opportunity for me to finally (finally!) get up the nerve to go tubing!

Brianna promised me Patrick would be right by my side and ensure I was safe. So after asking James (who's about the same degree of water-recreation fan as I am) if he thought I could do it and if his dad was worth trusting with my safety—and after Brianna, Patrick, and James made a run before me to report back the conditions—I went for it!

Just goes to show you're never too old for new experiences. And this is one experience I'll definitely engage in again. Next time, though, Jim—who currently has a foot wound he can't get wet so stayed ashore on Saturday—will be joining me for the ride through the rapids. And I'm pretty sure he won't require Patrick stay nearby for safety's sake.

But wait, there's more, as far as new experiences for this grandma go!

Crazy as it may seem, being Minnesota born and all, I had previously never fished, never cast a pole. Ever. Though Jim and our daughters did many times during our camping excursions throughout the years, I always took photos of their fun rather than participating alongside them.

This time I participated—at least long enough to try my hand at casting after a quick demonstration from my hubby.

Woo-hoo! 'Twas a double-whammy day for new water-based experiences for this grandma!

And there was still plenty of time for my more traditional pastime when out and about: snapping shots of the family fun. A sampling of our heat-beating—and edifying—Saturday: