I’ve been meaning to hit the snow tubing hill at Soldier Hollow, but didn’t get around to it until this past week when we had family visiting from out of state. I purchased discount tickets through a Groupon offering for 50% off the normal price of $20 for two hours of tubing – so $10/ticket. It was definitely worth every penny.
The Soldier Hollow tubing hill is located in Heber Valley, Utah near Midway, approximately a 35-minute drive from Park City. Soldier Hollow is where the 2002 Olympics were held for all cross-country skiing events. Next to the tubing hill is a groomed cross country ski trail and rentals are available for use. During the summer, the adjacent public golf course is open as part of the Wasatch Mountain State Park.
We arrived around 3pm on a Thursday afternoon and apparently the previous 2-hour session started at 2pm which ends at 4pm (they start tubing sessions on the even hour), so the lady at the desk wrote down 5pm on our tickets to make sure the lift operators wouldn’t kick us off at 4pm. Nice :). We moseyed up the hill to the lift line and choose our tubing vehicle. They have all sizes to accommodate kids to adult size rear-ends, some bigger than others ;). They had only one of their lift lines operating, but we didn’t have to wait in line long, only a few minutes.
When its your turn to get on the lift, you hand the tube rope line to the lift operator which gets hooked onto the cable and you simply plop down in your tube. The ride up is relaxing and you can watch other tubers and enjoy the scenery as you ascend. I must say I do enjoy lift-assisted tubing when was never an option when I was a kid. We did get more exercise by climbing hills on our own, but I don’t thing we would have got as many runs if we had to trudge ourselves up a 1,200-foot hill.
When you get to the top “dump station” you go down a small hill, the tube unhooks from the cable and you simply roll out and take your tube up to the tubing runs. There are six lanes (which may vary if they are grooming) to choose from, all with different configurations as far as how steep the up and down bumps go. When we got up to the top, there was no one in line and we mistakenly walked right past the sign which lists all the rules. Normally at the beginning of a session, the staff goes over some of the rules and tells you to read the safety sign. But since we came mid-session, 3pm instead of 2pm, we missed the safety spiel.
Soldier Hollow Tubing Hill – Our Experience
Here is a short video of us riding up the hill, down the hill with three of us tied together for extra speed 😮 and a shot from the bottom with someone riding down from the top.
*Why is the video so narrow?! This was the first time I recorded video with my iPod Touch and apparently you have to hold it horizontally, or landscape view, instead of up and down, which is portrait view, in order for it to display in proper widescreen view. Oops! Sorry, which I could have known then!
There is staff at the top telling you when it’s safe to go (so you don’t plow into people still on the run below) and he told us we were good to go. So we went. Three of us hooked together going what felt like 50mph by the time we got to the bottom. The wind was howling so loud, we kind of heard one of the staff at the bottom of the hill yelling something, but we could not understand. Apparently when you get to the last bump at the bottom of the run, where orange cones are set up, you need to drag your feet to help slow you down before hitting the plastic fence (one of those most important rules we neglected to read). The staff at the bottom were desperately yelling to us, “Draaaggg your feeeeet!” But it was too late and we took out the first two rows of fence before stopping. Ooops. Our bad. I lost track at how many runs we got in during our two-hour time slot, but it seemed more than plenty for us.
Here are some of the details for Soldier Hollow Snow Tubing:
- Longest tubing lanes in the state at 1,200 feet
- Day and evening tubing under the lights
- Tubing sessions 2-hours long, start on the even hour (10am-noon, noon-4pm, etc.)
- Rates: $20 for 2-hour session, ages 3-6, $10). We purchased our discount tickets for $10 through Groupon.
- Soldier Hollow limits the number of tickets sold during a session so it doesn’t get too crowded. They say you can make reservations ahead of time to make sure slots are available when you arrive. You can purchase tickets in advance with a credit card by calling 435-654-2002.
- Snow boots are available for rent for $10/adults, $5/juniors. On a side note, my father just wore his sneakers and was fine because the snow was packed down. But on a snowy day, you may want boots. We also recommend snow pants and a warm jacket. Sometimes the tubes will be wet so you don’t want to sit in them without a waterproof layer. And sitting in the tube while riding up the hill on the tow rope can get a little chilly, especially if the wind is blowing, so be sure to bring a jacket, gloves and hat. You may want some sunglasses or ski goggles on sunny or snowy days, respectively.
- There is a day lodge with a fireplace to get warmed up if you want to take a break between runs.
Soldier Hollow Tubing Hill Location
According to Google maps, its 21.6 miles from Park City to Soldier Hollow and will take about 37 minutes to drive.
Soldier Hollow Tubing Website or call 435-654-2002
There is also the Gorgoza Park Tubing Hill just off I-80 Jeremy Ranch Exit which is 1 exit east of the Kimball Junction, Park City exit. It does not have as long tubing runs as Soldier Hollow, but still fun and a little closer to town if you are staying in Park City. They also offer mini-snowmobiles for kids ages 5-12 and a learn-to-ski/snowboard area for the kids with an easy-to-ride conveyor lift. Rentals available for kids 8 and under.