For years, my friends and I rented tubes and floated down the river in Tippecanoe. It was an end of summer ritual. These days we’re including our kids on these fun adventures but we’re seeking out new places to inner tube. There’s a lot to see as you spend the day on a river float.
Renting an Inner Tube in Indiana
There are many places to rent tubes, but transportation is one of the best parts about working with an outfitter versus taking your own tubes for a float. When you rent an inner tube for a tube float, you’ll either be dropped off or picked up at the river. Some places have you launch from their site and then they pick you up at the end of the trip and take you back to your cars. Most will have you check in at their tube rental business and then transport you to an entry point on the river and you’ll float until you return to the place your rent a tube.
Where to Go Tubing in Indiana
With so many waterways, Indiana is a fantastic place to explore rivers and creeks. You could go creek stomping in Indianapolis or step up your game and actually get in to the river with an inner tube! Some of our friends even take it a step further and use a boat to pull an inner tube behind, but that’s not what we’re talking about today. Today we’re going on an adventure that’s generally slow paced and relaxing.
River Tubing Near Indianapolis
Just over 30 minutes from Indianapolis, you’ll find one of the best river floats in Indiana.
White River Canoe Company Tube Trips
17180 River Rd, Noblesville, Indiana
The White River Canoe Company is an outdoor adventure business that gives visitors experiences canoeing, tubing and kayaking on the West Fork of the White River northeast of Indianapolis in Noblesville. This outfitter sits directly on the White River. Enter the driveway and check-in at the office. Be sure to fill out your waivers online before you arrive to save time, or do this from your phone when you arrive. After checking in, you’ll drive your vehicle to the bottom of the hill where everyone is given a life vest (children age 13 and under are required to wear life jackets). WRCC life vests are the standard blocky, orange type. If your child is under 30 pounds, please bring your own that has the strap between the legs. If you’d like to join your tubes together, ask for some tube straps. You’ll board a school bus and be taken to Potter’s Bridge to start your real life Indiana lazy river adventure.
Other River Float Trips in Indiana
Sugar Creek Campground Tube Trips
841 W 83 N, Crawfordsville, Indiana
Sugar Creek Campground has a three mile tube trip with four daily departure times. Inner tube rental is $10 per person. Cooler tubes are available for $11 per tube. Reservations must be made 24 hours in advance.
Turkey Run Tube Trips
Less than 90 minutes from Indy, Turkey Run State Park is a popular place to go camping and traverse hiking trails. Sugar Creek is a favorite for outdoor water fun for beginners and more experienced adventurers who like to kayak, canoe or tube down the river.
Sugar Valley Canoes
1467 E SR 47 Marshall, Indiana
Sugar Valley Canoes offers a 3 ½ mile tube trip for $10 per person. This trip took 5 of us about an hour to an hour and a half because the water levels were high. Typically you can expect to spend about 3 hours on this trip, as trip times differ depending on the water level and if you stop to swim along the way. Departure times are from 9am – 3pm. Call ahead for reservations. This trip takes you through Turkey Run State Park.
Clements Canoes and Outdoor Center
8291 IN-234, Waveland, Indiana
Clements has a 3-5 hour trip. Tube rental ranges from $20-25 and $25 for a cooler tube (this just floats your cooler, you still need to bring a cooler) + $5 refundable damage deposit. Call ahead for reservations and departure times. These tube trips take you through Shades State Park. Clements also offers a whitewater trip.
Tippecanoe River State Park Tube Trips
Riverside Rentals Tube Trips
589 E Old State Rd 14, Winamac, Indiana
Riverside Rentals is the first company that I ever used for a group river tube trip. You’ll check in, grab your life vests and then ride a bus to the 3 1/2 miles up the river. Two – four hours later, you and your tube are back at Riverside Rentals. Try their rocket tubes for an even more relaxing experience. Tube rental starts at $15 per child and $25 per adult and includes the shuttle bus. Cooler floats are $15 and totally worth it! This river tube trip takes you through Tippecanoe State Park. You can even sign up for a 2 day trip and camp after day one.
What do I Wear on an Inner Tube Trip?
Swimsuits are best for an inner-tube trip. I also bring along a t-shirt just in case I need more sun protection. You’ll want to wear tennis shoes or water shoes, especially if you need to exit your tube and traverse rocky areas. I recommend Tevas or similar water shoes like Sketchers that have a strap, but I’ve also been able to get by with my Crocs.
Best Snacks for a River Float Trip
Drinks to bring along: Water (lots and lots of water), Gatorade, Powerade. Alcoholic beverages are generally allowed, but check the rules for details. Glass is not allowed.
Snacks for everyone: pretzels, chips, granola bars, fresh fruit like apples, oranges, peaches, cheese sticks.
Lunch for a picnic: Uncrustables/PB&J, deli sandwiches, cheese and crackers.
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