Family feeling a little stir crazy this winter? Our suggestion: kick cabin fever to the curb and embrace the snowy tundra with a snow tubing excursion with the kids. No skill or expensive gear is needed, and there are plenty of places to go snow tubing near NYC, whether you want a day trip or an overnight. Here are over a dozen spots to slip and slide in the snow!
Key Tips for Maximum Snow Tubing Fun: A Must Read!
To manage crowds, most tubing parks require reservations for a specific time. You can cut down on your wait when you arrive by getting waiver forms at parks’ web sites and filling them out beforehand. Like all snow sports, the weather affects tubing conditions. Give the parks a call to confirm they are fully operational and open.
photo: Jennifer D. via Yelp
1. The Shortest Drive
The closest to NYC, Campgaw Mountain offers 10 tubing runs to choose from with small bumps and valleys. The mountain isn’t very big, so it’s great for a “get in, get tubing and get out” kind of day. Plus, no bruised bums here — they require you to lay on your belly on the tube. Campgaw also offers snow tubing birthday parties. Note: little ones must be 42 inches tall to ride, and spaces are limited to 180 per session, so it’s best to get your tickets online in advance.
Drive time from NYC: 45 minutes
Cost: $24-28 per two-hour session depending on day of the week
Hours: Mon.-Thur. 2 p.m.-8 p.m.; Fri. 1 p.m.-10 p.m.; Sat, 8:30 a.m.-10 p.m.; Sun. & holidays: 8:30 a.m.-8 p.m.
200 Campgaw Rd.
2. Catskills Coasting
Known for a family-friendly vibe, Holiday Mountain Ski and Fun Park is a small ski resort complete with a brand new “Magic Carpet” lift for easy-on/easy-off. Because it’s a manageable size, you can often skip the crowds you might find at other tubing spots. (You can even print a coupon to save on admission.) Children must be 44 inches tall and a supervising adult will need a valid ID. They have limited space, so call them 845-796-3161 to book your spot on the slope.
Drive time from NYC: 90 minutes
Cost: $20 per two-hour session
Hours: Fri.-Sun., schedules vary so call ahead
99 Holiday Mountain Rd.
photo: JR via Yelp
3. Coming ‘Round the Mountain
Mountain Creek has a whopping 30 snow tubing lanes to keep snow lovers flying down the mountain all day long (but not too fast – there’s age appropriate tubing for those 5 and older). Tubers must be 42 inches tall AND at least 5 years old to ride. Make your reservation online in advance or by phone.
Drive time from NYC: 1 hour and 15 minute drive (Alternatively, take a bus!)
Cost: $30 per two-hour session
Hours: Wed.-Fri. 4 p.m.-8 p.m.; Sat., Sun. and holidays 10 a.m.-9 p.m.
200 State Rte. 94
4. Tandem Tubing
The Pocono Plunge Snow Tubing Park at Shawnee Mountain offers six tubing chutes and two Magic Carpet lifts. Double the fun and go for a tandem tube for parents with little kids under 46 inches. Tickets are available first come, first served.
Drive time from NYC: 90-minutes
Cost: $25-$45 depending on day of the week and session length
Hours: Mon.-Thur. 9 a.m.-5:30 p.m.; Fri. 1 p.m.-7:30 p.m.; Sat. 9 a.m.-7:30 p.m.; Sun 9 a.m.-5:30 p.m.
401 Hollow Rd.
East Stroudsburg, Pa
5. Three Feet High and Rising
Located in the Hudson Valley, Mount Peter is family-operated and the oldest operating ski area in NY state (founded in 1936 by Macy’s to showcase their winter fashions!) Now they’ve opened the Little Tikes Tubing Play Area to accommodate tiny tubers as small as 36 inches tall & up. Youngsters at 42 inches or taller can take a conveyor belt up to slide 600 feet down, and tandem tubing is allowed for guests 36-48 inches with an adult on the big hill. Sessions are two hours long and reservations are encouraged.
Cost: $30 holidays and weekends; $24 weekdays; Little Tykes: $22 holidays and weekends; $17 weekdays
Hours: Thurs.-Fri. noon-7 p.m.; Sat. 11 a.m.-7 p.m.; Sun. and holidays 11 a.m.- 5 p.m.
51 Old Mt. Peter Rd.
photo: Camelback Mountain Resort
6. Go Big or Go Home
Camelback Mountain Resort is the biggest snowtubing park in the country, with up to 42 lanes of tubing, 2 Magic Carpets and both single and double tubes to race your friends and family! At night you can go Galactic Tubing through a colorful LED light show. Tickets are sold first come, first served and due to the tremendous popularity of this place, the resort recommends arriving an hour before your desired session time. Must be 44 inches tall to tube alone and 33 inches to go with an adult. Call the snowtubing hotline for updates on the latest conditions 570-629-1664 Ext. 7.
Drive time from NYC: 1 hour, 40-minute drive
Cost: $28-$35, for a three hour session; sessions start every hour on the hour
Hours: Mon.-Thurs., Noon- 8 p.m.; Fri., Noon-10 p.m., Sat. & Sun. 9 a.m.-10 p.m.
301 Resort Dr.
7. Nipping at Your Poconos
Go West, young people and old alike, for a day of snow tubing fun at Jack Frost Big Boulder. The first commercial ski resort in PA and the first to use snowmaking, too, Jack Frost and its sister area Big Boulder have years of family funtime under their belt. And, with tubing sessions running from three hours to all day, you can spend enough time sliding down the hill that everybody will be satisfied. Jack Frost, the smaller resort, has two cable tows to transport snow tubers uphill, while Big Boulder features two 600-foot conveyor carpets. The recommended height for tubing here is 42 inches. For the bargain rate, tube on a non-holiday weekend Sunday from 4-8 p.m. at Big Boulder for $20.
Drive time from NYC: 2 hour drive
Cost: $25-$47, depending on day and resort
Hours: Jack Frost, Fri.-Sun. 10 a.m.-4 p.m.;
Big Boulder, Mon.-Fri. 3 p.m.-9 p.m.; Sat.-Sun. and holidays 10 a.m.-10 p.m.;
Jack Frost Ski Resort
434 Jack Frost Mountain Rd.
White Haven, Pa
Big Boulder Mountain
357 Big Boulder Dr.
Lake Harmony, Pa
Photo via Raymond A on Yelp
8. For Tubing with a Side of Babysitting
This snowtubing park offers up to 39 lanes, three lifts, and 1,000 feet of track. Grab a bite at one of the eateries at the bottom of the tubing hill, or check out the Slopeside Pub & Grill for mountaintop views. The required height for tubing is 36 inches, but there’s no age requirement. Got an itty-bitty ages six weeks to 5 years not ready for the slopes? There’s a Childcare Center where they can play while the bigger kids hit the snow ($5/hour per child on weekdays, $10 on weekends.) Advance tubing tickets are recommended.
Drive time from NYC: 2 hours
Cost: $25-$40, depending on day
Hours: Mon.-Thurs. 9 p.m.-5 p.m., Fri. 10 a.m.-10 p.m., Sat., Sun. & holidays 8 a.m.-10 p.m
1660 Blue Mountain Dr.
9. Hunting for Adventure
Hunter Mountain is the largest snow tubing park in New York state with 20-plus chutes nearly 1,000 feet long, a Mini Tubing Park for smaller snow lovers, a snack bar and a fire pit. It’s worth the drive at least once. You must be 33 inches to ride here, which makes it a good spot for tiny tubers, too. You can even host a tubing birthday party here. Sessions are two hours long and start every hour on the hour, and Hunter is open Fri.-Mon. with extended hours on MLK Jr. weekend.
Cost: $20/person 42 inches tall & up on Fri.; $25/person on Sat. & Sun.; $35 for kids 33 inches to 42 inches tall with adult
Hours: Sat. 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; Sun. 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
64 Klein Ave.
photo: Montage Mountain
10. So Many Scenes
So many things to do! Montage Mountain boasts “the longest and fastest lanes in Pennsylvania,” with 10 lanes, including kiddie lanes for those tubers ages 3-7, or 32 to 41 inches tall. LED lights glow over the slope at night, and you can warm up at a fire pit or have a snack at Johnny Rocket’s Tubing Area Shack. Tubing sessions are three hours long, and military families get a 20 % discount here. Check conditions here to see what’s up and operating.
Drive time from NYC: 2 hour, 15-minute drive
Cost: Mon.-Thurs., $25; Fri.-Sun. and holidays $30
Hours: Mon.-Thurs. 4 p.m.-9 p.m.; Fri. noon-9 p.m.; Sat.-Sun. 10 a.m.-9 p.m.;
Holidays 9 a.m. – 9 p.m.
1000 Montage Mountain Rd.
photo: Windham Mountain Adventure Park
11. The Place to Do it All
The Windham Mountain Adventure Park is the mac daddy of snow parks! Rocket down a 650-foot snow-covered slope with six lanes of snow tubing or tube family-style and tie together a group of up to six tubes. But there’s more: ice skating, two zip lines, kid-sized snowmobiles, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing. Grab a hot cocoa in Sliders Café before lacing up those ice skates or relax in the lodge afterwards. This place will keep you entertained all winter long. Tubers must be three years old or 36 inches tall to ride. Tickets are sold on site first come, first served.
Drive time from NYC: 2 hours 30 minutes drive or hop on one of their suggested buses
Cost: $20 for 2 hour session; $25 for 4 hour session; $89 for tubing value pack (five tickets per 4-hour session)
Hours: Fri., 4 – 8 p.m.; Sat. 11 a.m.-8 p.m., Sun. 11 a.m.-4 p.m.
19 Resort Dr.
— Gretchen Kunz
feature photo: Platekill Mountain via Yelp