One of the best things about winter is snow adventures! Here in Seattle, we are lucky to have snow easily accessible with so many opportunities for fun from sledding, tubing, cross-country skiing, downhill skiing, etc. Seattle Refined has gathered a list of all the best places to get in some snow fun within a few hours of Seattle.
Located just about an hour for downtown Seattle, The Summit Tubing Center is snow tubing at its best. The 12 groomed individual lanes of snow allow for hours of tubing fun. The gently sloped hills are the length of a football field and include commercial-grade tubes with a tow to get you back to the top for even more tubing fun. Tubing tickets allow for two-hour sessions beginning at 9 a.m. and the small on-site cafe means post-tubing snacks are easily accessible. Tubing hours are dependent on natural snowfall so check the website for days and times as they change often. Save time by downloading, printing and signing the Tubing Liability Release before you arrive. You can also pre-buy tickets online and digitally sign the release. Ticket prices begin at $5 for kids and $22 for adults. The Summit at Snoqualmie offers downhill skiing, nordic skiing and snowshoe opportunities. This multi-faceted mountain has fantastic downhill runs but also offers serene nordic skiing paths. Snowshoers are welcome to travel along the nordic paths but must stay to the right of the two parallel tracks set by the groomers. Gear rental is available at Summit West with a large inventory of both downhill and nordic skis along with snowshoe equipment.
Winterfest at Suncadia Resort offers a plethora of winter fun from ice skating to tubing, snowshoeing and cross country skiing along with horse-drawn carriage rides and ice skating. Just 80 miles east of Seattle, Suncadia offers all the fun winter had to offer. For those adventurers looking of more, Suncadia offers a Snowshoe & Brew tour which takes guests on a 8-mile trek through the forest and Nelson Farm before stopping in Roslyn for a pint. Tubing hill provides hours for fun for kids 3 and up at $20 a session per rider for two hours of slip sliding fun. Inner tubes are included with lift ticket purchase. The several miles of groomed trails at Suncadia provide beautiful scenery for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing. Bring your own gear or rent them from The Inn every day from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Ski rental starts at $25 with snowshoe rental starting at $18. Ice Skating takes place Friday though Saturday at the Village Pavilion with three sessions a day. Skate rentals are provided and sessions start at $15.
Hyak Sno-Park is the Washington State Sno-Park closest to Seattle with a groomed sledding hill, marked snowshoe route, groomed ski trail and skate platform. The trails and sledding are free but parking is not. Users will need a Seasonal Sno-Park permit with the special grooming sticker, or a day pass in conjunction with a Discover Pass (seasonal or day pass) starting at $20 a day. Dogs are unfortunately not allowed. Also this is a BYOG location so make sure to bring your own sleds, snowshoes and skis. There are heated restrooms at the Sno-Park which will be greatly appreciated after playing in the snow for hours. The park is sometimes closed for ice so check conditions before you go.
Seattle’s other nearby ski resort, Steven’s Pass offers many amenities similar to Snoqualmie. They have fabulous downhill ski options along with nordic ski trails, snowshoeing and sledding. Their sled & tubing area are offered free of charge and are just northwest of the Cascade Depot Lodge which had food and restrooms. The Nordic Center has maintained snowshoe trails for all abilities and require a trail pass which can be purchased in the Cascade Depot at the center.
Head just a little further east past Steven’s Pass to Leavenworth for a 100-foot tubing hill with 90-minute sessions and a tow rope at Lt. Michael Adams Tubing Park. This hill offers a try it before you buy it trail run so you can check things out before purchasing a $20 per person ticket. Tubes are provided with your ticket but you can also BYOT (bring your own tube). This hill is also available for private rental. Just shoot an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and start planning your tubing party.
Head south to the Snowplay Area at the Paradise Visitor's Center on Mt. Rainier. This BYO tubes and sleds area requires at least five feet of snow to open so check online before heading out. For the more adventurous types, tag along on a ranger-led snowshoeing adventure from the visitor’s center at 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. through March. You’ll need a park pass for this adventure and all cars are required to carry chains while in the park during the winter.
This ski resort has it all from downhill skiing to guided snowshoe tours and dinners. For the non-skier and skiers alike, gondola rides are available to take in the majestic mountain views. Grab a nosh at the Summit House before heading back down the mountain. The guided snowshoe tours are a great way to get out with a group of friends while enjoying drinks from local breweries and wineries. And of course the downhill skiing can’t be beat at this mountain where the runs are long and vast.
Head 17 miles from Port Angeles to the Olympic National Park for the perfect opportunity for winter fun. Hurricane Ridge is typically snow-covered and offers snowshoeing, cross-country and downhill skiing, snowboarding, tubing and more. The visitor’s center provides a great place to warm up and heated restrooms along with a snack bar. Check weather and road conditions before heading up either online or via phone at 360-565-3131. The ski area is small but packs a hearty punch with two rope tows, a puma lift and tubing area. Tubes are provided at no extra charge so no need to BYOT at this location!