Grab your sidekicks and check off another item on our bucket list by heading on up to Mt. Hood Adventure Park at Skibowl ASAP. The adrenaline junkies in the family can get a bird’s eye view of the forest on the zipline or careen down the mountain on the alpine slide, while the rest of the family hits the summer tube hill, pony rides and kiddie go-karts. The best part? It’s open every day through August and it’s just a little over an hour’s drive from Portland. skibowl zipline

photo: Courtesy of Mt. Hood Adventure Park at Skibowl Facebook page

Zip, Drop & Roll
For the big and/or bold kids, there are plenty of activities to keep the adrenaline pumping. For starters, there’s the zip line.  At three stories high and 800 feet long, you’ll get the best view of Mt. Hood and the Mt. Hood National Forest. It’s all been professionally engineered to be completely safe for people 60-240 pounds. Next up, it’s the 100-foot Freefall Bungee Jump Tower, with an inflated safety bag below. This one’s not for the faint of heart, but it has been certified safe for kids and adults 80-240 lbs. It’s seen 10,000 jumpers and counting. Not quite ready for that? Try the Reverse Bungee, which yanks you up from the ground by a harness and slingshots you into the air, then dangling 80 feet above the ground.

If you’d rather be on the ground when you go fast, try the Indy Karts, aka Sprint Cars, on the Malibu Raceway. This speedway experience offers souped-up cars on a track with tight hairpin turns. Kids must be 12 years old and at least 52 inches tall to drive, but kids three years and up can ride with an adult. Then, it’s time for you and your bike to take a Scenic Chair Ride up to mid-mountain or all the way to the Skibowl summit to come screaming back down the hill on your choice of trails. Even if you’re not into the fast action, the mountain offers over 40 miles of trails for teens through expert riders.

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photo: Courtesy of Mt. Hood Adventure Park at Skibowl 

Slide & Bounce
First up, it’s the Alpine Slide, the only dual slide of its kind in the Pacific Northwest and it’s totally a must-do. A quick and gorgeous ten-minute chair lift sets you down at the top of the Alpine Slide, where you’ll swish and glide down your choice of two half-mile tracks, either “Scenic” or “Experienced” making it easy for you to choose which one’s right for you.

Then, there are the human-sized Aqua Rollers, aka Hamster Balls, which are are large, inflatable balls that sit in a pool of shin-deep water. Up to three people can climb inside one, get strapped in, and roll around and upside down with the help of a staff member. Kids must be at least three years old and 48″ tall to ride.

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photo: Courtesy of Mt. Hood Adventure Park at Skibowl Facebook page

Tube, Jump & Bungee
For the summer, the snow tubing hill doesn’t rest. It’s a quick ride down, whether your tube takes you backwards or forward down the plastic mesh track, through the refreshing water misters. The people-moving conveyor belt takes you back to the top, making it easy to slide down over and over again.

Next up, kids can get strapped into a harness and jump higher than they ever thought possible on a Bungee Trampoline. The four trampolines that make up the Quad Bungee Trampolines are set up near the base of Skibowl for kids from 40 to 200 lbs. Tired of bouncing around and riding on things?  Not to worry, there’s also plenty of fun to be had with your feet on the ground, including batting cages, a mini golf course and arcade games.  DSCN4680

photo: Courtesy of Mt. Hood Adventure Park at Skibowl

Kiddie-Karts & Pony Rides
If your kidlets are really small, there are kiddie rides and activities galore, like pony rides, canoes, kiddie go-karts, a swing-carousel ride, and the indoor playground complete with a ball pit, tunnels, slides, small bounce house and beanbag toss. The littlest ones in your crew can also ride in your lap on the Alpine Slide, and share the inner tubes or bounce down in a tandem tube. If they’re three or older, they can sit next to you on the bigger go-karts.

Good to Know
Tickets: The action is split into two parts, the East End and the West End, and a shuttle can take you back and forth between the two. Ride tickets and wristbands can be purchased at both locations. There are many levels of tickets and wristbands, so just expect a pricey day. Prices range from A La Carte, individual ride tickets for $15-$69, to Two-Hour Adventure Passes for $29 and unlimited rides via the Action Pass for $79. See what’s included with each here.

Food: Pack your own or can hit the concession stand for food, like hot dogs, sandwiches, coffee,  Italian ice and slushies or the vending machines. Much like in ski season there are designated spots among the lodges for eating your own food.

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Hours: Open 7 days a week from now through Sept. 1, from 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Mon.-Thurs., 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Fri., 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Sat.-Sun. Weekends only in Sept. from 11 a.m.-6 p.m. (Not open the weekend of Sept. 20-21st)

Weather: Mornings tend to be chilly and afternoons typically bring hot sun. Wear layers, slather on the sunscreen and bring hydration for the car ride home.

Mt. Hood Skibowl
87000 E. Hwy. 26
Government Camp, Or
503-272-3206
Online at skibowl.com

Have you taken your kids to Mt Hood Adventure Park? Tell us about it in the Comments below!

— Suzie Ridgway