The snow pack is affecting tube rental shops in Lava Hot Springs. Those traveling to Lava will find five of the six tube renting shops closed because the river is too high. Tube Renters say the rapids are dangerous and there’s a good chance of them flipping over, which is not a risk they want to take.
People touring Lava Hot Springs travel all over to come enjoy what the town has to offer. Summer is fast approaching and water activities are what Lava is known for. This time, Vacationers will find five tube shops closed and only one open. Randy Benglan the Owner and Operator of Portneuf Rapids Tube Rental says, "There's no governing body that will close the river. It's just that certain tube rentals aren't renting their tubes right now because of how high the river."
With the snow pack from the mountains still running off into the river, some tube renters have decided to not have patrons out on the water right now. Benglan talks to KPVI while looking over the high tides in the river, "As you can visualize people coming down and hitting that right there and that's either gonna flip them or shoot them that way... cause the river's wanting to go over there... yeah that's pretty gnarly."
Generally the beginning of June is not a busy time for Portneuf Rapids Tube Rental, but owners say the tradeoff financially isn’t a huge impact. "We don't have a quantitative way to measure how dangerous the river is or how safe it is. So my rule of thumb is, if I'm not going down there myself. Then I'm not going to send anybody else down the river."
Those who would float down the quarter mile through town say they understand safety comes first. "Be aware of the hazards, and being aware that it's for our fun and our recreation. We just need to not horse play. Just need to go down there, have fun and be safe,” Benglan said.
This weekend, the Portneuf Rapids Tube rental will start renting out quadruple tubes only because they most likely won’t flip over in the water.