The Bhakti-ratnakara mentions that the place where the Yamuna River passes through the Lauhavana forest is the spot where Krishna’s nauka-vihara pastimes were enacted. The word ‘nauka’ means a ‘boat’ and ‘vihara’ means ‘ambrosial pastimes’. This pastime is also mentioned in the Padyavali of Shrila Rupa Goswami. One day, the gopis came here to the banks of the Yamuna carrying vessels full of milk products that they were taking to the market on the other side of the Yamuna. On arrival, the gopis saw that there were no boats to carry them across the river, accept an old and dilapidated boat owned by Krishna, who was lying inside it pretending to be unconcerned and fast asleep. Actually, Krishna had been secretly waiting for the beautiful gopis to arrive so He could carry them in His boat across the river and enjoy some fun. Seeing Krishna lying in the boat, Radharani called His name but at first He could not be woken. After much cajoling, Krishna eventually woke up and eventually agreed to take the gopis in His boat to the other side of the Yamuna.
As they made their way across the river the weather suddenly changed and as the wind started to blow, the water became choppy and dangerous. As the boat began to rock from side to side, it also began filling with water due to a hole that suddenly appeared in the floor of the boat. Krishna advised the gopis that in order to save the boat from immediately sinking, they should throw all their heavy vessels containing milk products overboard. Thus, on Krishna’s advice, the gopis immediately threw all their vessels into the river. When that did not have the desired effect and the boat still appeared to be sinking, Krishna advised the gopis to remove all their heavy jewelry, including their solid gold necklaces, bangles, and rings, and throw that overboard also, which they also immediately did. Radharani anxiously told Krishna, “This boat is broken and the river is very deep here. We are only young girls and the situation is not in our favor. If we survive at all, it is because You are our boatman. On your suggestion, we have thrown away all our vessels and all our jewelry, yet the other bank is not even in sight. This boat is filling with water and at any moment it will sink being caught in a stormy whirlpool. Alas, what an unforeseen calamity! Despite this, You are clapping joyfully. My hands cannot stop the work of bailing out the water from the boat and You cannot stop making jokes. O Krishna, if I save myself this time, I will never again set foot in your boat.” The boat however managed to reach the shore and the gopis, although bereft of all their milk products and jewelry, were just happy to have been saved, while Krishna was feeling the greatest ecstasy due to His transcendental boating pastimes with the gopis at Lauhavana.