One of Emma’s favorite activities to do all summer is float on the Santian River. Nearly every weekend, she and her friends head out for a few hours of watery fun. It’s a great way to beat the heat and just relax. Since her aunt and I are both visiting from out of town, she organizes a float for us Sunday morning to show us what she loves so much about this activity.

Our first stop is to drop off her mom’s car at the parking lot where we’ll get out of the water. It would sure be a long day if we had to walk all the way back to the start. It’s also important to make sure you have the keys for that car with you on the float and not left behind in the other car.

Then we drive up river to the section where we’ll get in. Emma has rafts for her mom, aunt and herself, and I brought my own. We pull everything out, strip down to our swimsuits and apply sunscreen.

Quick side note – see that house behind Emma? I fall instantly in love with it. Someday I hope to live in a house with as much character and charm as that house has.

Emma has a special pump that quickly inflates all the rafts. In no time at all, we’re ready to get this show on the road.

We make our way down to the river. It’s cold and takes a few minutes to get used to, but it’s also refreshing. We jump into our floats and off we go!

santian river

It’s at this point I realize that the batteries in both my underwater camera and my GoPro are dead. Nooooo! How could I have been so careless? I can’t believe I won’t be able to take any pictures of the trip. I guess I’ll just have to sit back, relax and enjoy it with my eyes instead.

We hardly see any other people the entire time 2+ hours we’re on the river. I even take a quick nap because it’s all so relaxing. But I can tell by the end, despite all the sunscreen I’ve applied, I’ve got a serious sunburn going on. Worth it.

I’m sad when we reach the lower parking lot. I could happily keep on floating for another hour or two. But then we’d have a long walk back, and that’s definitely not on the agenda for today. Emma snaps this photo below of the four of us, just before we get out.

What a great way to spend a morning! I’ve said it before, but if you can’t find something fun to do in Salem for a few days, you aren’t trying hard enough. I really enjoyed my time here and can’t wait to go back and visit again!

Nighttime at the Chinese Gardens
Wine Tasting in the Willamette Valley

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