This time of year, a lot of people stop thinking snow. In place of carving turns in fresh powder, visions of spring flowers start blooming in our minds. But here in the White Mountains winter has at least a few more weeks to go.
What better way to make the best of that time than hopping on a snow tube at Loon?
Loon Mountain Resort in Lincoln, NH still has plenty of snow, and one truly awesome lift-serviced tubing hill. We recently booked our snow tubing tickets for the whole White Mountains Attractions crew and headed out on the slopes for a Sunday evening filled with snow flurries and plenty of laughs.
Since our tubing session was scheduled for 4:30, we were able to park in the main lot (located right near the Octagon Lodge). Walking across the lot sans heavy ski gear served as great reminder that tubing is one of the easiest ways to get on the mountain minus any hassle! All you need to do is dress the part, with snow boots, snow pants, and mittens topping the list of must-haves.
After picking up our tickets at the Tubing Center, the Little Sister Double chairlift was the next stop. We boarded the lift in pairs and spent the short ride to the top of the tubing hill watching other riders race below us as the sun peeked through cloudy gray skies. Pro tip? Take a glance behind you on the way up to catch a view of Potash Knob, Big Coolidge Mountain, and distant views of the Franconia ridgeline.
At the top, it’s a quick scoot off the chairlift, your pick of a blue- or yellow-bottomed tube (we found both to be equally fast), and then some brief instructions from the attendant before you start your slide down the mountain.
Each tube is equipped with “brakes” that come in the form of a lever on each side. Keep your feet clear of the snow and use either the left or right brake to steer, and both brakes to stop. It takes a little bit of trial and error, but by the third run, we were zooming down the slopes with confidence.
The ride is quick, leaving plenty of time for multiple runs during our hour-long tubing session. Two riders also slide at the same time, making it the perfect option for families looking to get their kids out on the slopes with mom or dad just a few feet away on their own tube. There is also a small Tot Tubing hill at the base of the Little Sister Trail for those kiddos that don’t quite make the weight or age requirements (available on Loon’s website).
Depending on conditions, Loon’s snow tubing season typically runs from mid-December through mid-March. We’re already planning our next trip before winter officially bids the Whites adieu, including a post-tubing dinner at Gordi’s Fish & Steak House or one of Lincoln’s many other yummy stops.
Visit our website for other trip ideas to round out your bucket list of best things to do in the White Mountains!
(Photos by Caitlin Farrar)
Click the video below and come along on our snow tubing trip!