Getaway Guide To Mountain Tubing

February 2, 2017 7:00 AM

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Reporting Jay Lloyd

It started as a quirky little inducement to skiers and snowboarders who travel with non-sliding lovers and friends. Give them something to do in the snow – safe – no skill needed. At the time no one realized that Snow Tubing would soar from add-on to major attraction. Today, some tubing parks require reservations and have added hours and tubing lanes. Ski areas are seeing entire groups arriving – just for the tubing. Let’s explore some of the tubing options within a few hours of home.

SPRING MOUNTAIN

The closest tubing chutes to home are on the slopes at Spring Mountain. It’s an easy way for new tubers to ease their way into the action. While there are areas that offer tubes for two, even four. Spring Mountain features single rider tubes. There’s not much to learn about sliding down a snow covered chute on a rubber tube. You’ll be heading for the top in no time at all. The sessions here are 3-1/2 or 4 hours and run on weekday nights, and on weekends, both day and night at a cost of $24 and $29. All the info you’ll need is right here:

CAMELBACK MOUNTAIN GALACTIC TUBING

If you’re ready for the big time, you’re not likely to find bigger if you combed the nation. Camelback Mountain has plunged major innovations into its’ “Galactic” tubing park. The complex accented with a dynamic nighttime light show holds 42 lanes, groomed for maximum zip. Double tubes are available that make it easy to get a parent and child on the hill together. “Magic Carpet” lifts get you to the top of the 100 vertical foot tubing hill. And there’s a tubing base lodge to get a warm-up between runs. There are 3, 4 and 5 hours sessions, depending on day of the week. Midweek sliding is $25, weekend $35. Check hours and requirements here: 

JACK FROST/BIG BOULDER

Jack Frost Mountain operates six chutes and a tow to get riders and tubes up the hill before launching off on their downhill cruise.
At nearby sister resort, Big Boulder, a teen and 20 something crowd revels in the spinning effect as their tubes spiral down the hillside via one of 20 individual chutes, to be returned to the summit on two tows and a conveyor lift. One ticket gets access to both tubing parks. But hours vary. Jack Frost is a daytime snow covered playground, while Big Boulder runs night and day. Jack Frost operates tubing lanes Friday to Sunday. Big Boulder goes 7 days a week. Get a look at all the hours, prices and regs right here: https://www.jfbb.com/snow-tubing/

BLUE MOUNTAIN

Blue Mountain is a magnet for area tubers who get their kicks in quartets. This multi-adventure mountain turns out tubes that can hold 4 riders to blaze down 39 lanes of 1,000 foot spinning thrills. A trio of lifts gets you from base to tubing park summit. It’s a 7 day a week operation with Monday through Thursday sessions at night, weekend ops run day and night. Reservations are recommended. Ticket prices are $30 and $50 and can be bought online at: www.skibluemt.com/winter-sports/snowtubing/

SHAWNEE MOUNTAIN TUBING

Shawnee Mountain dubs it the “Pocono Plunge Tubing Park” with 5 chutes and a pair of lifts. All tubes here are for solo riders or an adult and child. The park operates day and night, 7 days a week. But weekday sessions start at 1pm, weekends run morning to night. Shawnee does not take reservations and does limit the number of riders in 2 or 4 hour sessions to eliminate waiting and accelerate riding. Prices vary depending on length of session and day of the week. Check it all right here: shawneemt.com/poconos-snow-tubing/snow_tubing.html

Tips for tubing: Most mountains do not have age requirements, but they do have height requirements. Before going with children it’s best to check the specific mountain web site. It’s important to wear warm, comfortable clothing – what you would wear for sledding. Forget street shoes or ski boots. The best bet is boots that you would wear when walking in snow. I like to wear waterproof shell pants over jeans. If you’re in average condition. you can tube. There are no special skills needed. Just get out there and enjoy.

jack frosttubing Getaway Guide To Mountain Tubing

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