Must be ages 3+ and 36" tall
This was such a fun experience. We toted tubes up to the end of a magic carpet then hoisted our inflated vessels a little further after the carpet ended to where the magic carpet began. There were three lanes to choose from in whisking our way back down the hill. One was bumpier than the others, one was deemed the fast lane due to its smooth surface and the third one was reserved for the more cautious rider. We tested all of them to confirm their labels and all of them were accurate!
Safety is first here but be assured that it doesn't get in the way of the fun. There are monitors at each lane making sure that riders go down one at a time. They will even offer to set you up to embark on your ride in a continuous spinning motion if you'd like! There's also a monitor at the bottom ready to offer assistance to those needing help to clear off the bottom of the track quickly.
The only compliant I heard was about the lines at the top of the route where riders would wind up gathered waiting their turns to travel back down the hill. I assure you, it came from the kid riders! Although the walk between the end of the of the magic and the start of tubing track was short, it was long enough for the parents to appreciate the opportunity to catch their breath while waiting in line!
Lines or not, the bottom line is that this was good clean fun!
DISCLOSURE: My family received complimentary tubing to facilitate this review. My opinions are my own.
We had a hard time finding a good place to bring our toddler for sledding/tubing during a recent weekday trip to Tahoe. Most of the places for young children were only open Friday-Monday. So we found tubing through Snoventures at Squaw.
It is $20 per hour from 11am-4pm, but that means they have 1 hour sessions starting at 11am. So we got there at 11:20 and paid full price ($20 each) for 40 min. of tubing, or we could have waited until 12 to get the full hour. We knew 40 min. would be plenty for us since our son is 3 and tires of things pretty quickly.
There are 3 hills, all of them are pretty steep. Surprisingly steep in fact, I was nervous as the attendant pushed my son's tube down the hill with his foot. You sit in a tube and go flying down the hill, spinning and bumping into the edges. They let you go one at a time and the next person cannot start down the hill until the previous person is completely off the course- this means that you can't go down and hold on to anyone's tube at the same time. So if your kid doesn't do things without you, this would not be the place to start. Our son was done after 1 run on the "small" hill. For the rest of the time my husband and I took turns going up the "magic carpet" and careening down the hill. It was great because it wasn't crowded, but if it was crowded it would be hard to get many runs in.
So overall, it was fun but if your child is not into going fast down a hill without you it is probably not worth $20. The toddler area is a small part of a room in the back of the building with a few toys and some blocks. Not super exciting when there is a bunch of snow outside to throw around :)
I took my family tubing at SnoVentures in Squaw Valley and OMG it was amazing; a blast for the whole family! The highlight of my day was when my son fell asleep sitting in his tube while riding the magic carpet to the top of the tubing lane. What’s a mom to do? I pushed him down the tubing hill asleep! JUST KIDDING. I pulled his tube off to the side and let him nap in it while I enjoyed tubing on my own for an hour before waking him up.
TIP: The only food available at SnoVentures is hot cocoa ($3) and popcorn.
Kids must be 3+ and 36" tall to tube. Tubes come in sizes for both children and adults. The tubes were in great condition and looked brand new. Tubing is $20/hour. Helmets are not required but can be rented. (Helmet rentals are not in the same location as SnoVentures.) SnoVentures Lodge also offers mini snowmobiles for kids ages 6 -12.
TIP: Skiers can take the gondola to the tubing hill – it’s located in the east corner of the parking lot at the base of the mountain.
If your family is staying in a condo at the Village, my best guess would be that it is a .25 mile walk to the tubing hill. I made the trek from our condo with three kids all under the age 6, but we got lost and wandered around a bit before finding SnoVentures Lodge, so it felt like we were walking forever. Next time I stay at The Village at Squaw, I'll take the squaw shuttle which runs every 15 minutes from The Village to SnoVentures. If you're driving, the closest parking lot to the tubing hill is the lot in front of Cornice Cantina.
Snoventures has a great little toddler room in the back that's easy to miss if you're not looking. My 4-year-old really enjoyed his time in it. There's a TV playing kids movies, an activity table large enough for 6 kids to play at once, and foam cushions to play with. A few video games are located just outside the toddler room. SnoVentures hours are 11 am to 4 pm.
My family received complimentary tubing to facilitate this review. My opinions are my own.
We enjoyed this more than I expected... My kids are little (2 and 4), but we were able to hold on to each other's tubes so that we could go down together. The little one gave up after two runs, but my older one was up for a couple more tries. It's tricky at the end of the slope, because you have to bring the tube back to the line -- before the next rider hits the bottom of the run. Staff were pretty helpful, conscious of the fact we had little ones with us.
I do have to admit that my two adult-only runs were the most fun. The staff is willing to spin your tube if you request it, and you really do feel like you're going to fly away! That said, be careful NOT to request this with little kids -- could be quite scary!!