Extreme Snow Tubing Day Trip

This day trip is not your average snow tubing event.  I went with Urban Escapes this past weekend on their extreme snow tubing and beer tasting day trip.  Having been to snow tubing areas that went straight down on narrow tracks and got a bit tiring after an hour, I can honestly say that this extreme snow tubing track was never anything but an adventure! 

After meeting in the city at 9am, our bus arrived at the Woodbury, CT  snow tubing area at around 11:30am.  Our group was given colored bandanas to wear so that we could identify who was in the group and mingle with each other throughout the day.  There were many tracks to choose from.  Most of the tracks were on one side of the street, which had all different track levels from beginner to black diamond.  Since this was the main area, the line got long rather quickly.  Luckily, Urban Escapes had reserved a track  that only our group could access.  After waiting through the long line for the other tracks, I decided to head to the other side of the street to try out the area reserved for the group. 

The track reserved for our group was longer than the others and was labeled both green for beginner and black diamond depending on where you launched yourself.  Even at the beginner launching section, I still found myself flying down the hill through the twists and turns.  From the black diamond launch, the momentum down the hill was intense.  There were turns where you would fly and catch air as you made your way down.  At this particular snow tubing park, they recommended that you go face first and so that you could drag your legs on the ground if you wanted to slow your speed.  I found that even when I dragged my legs, I was still going quite fast down the track.  We had a few people in our group that really embraced the speed of the track and kept their legs up, tried running starts and really flew in the air on the way down.  Helmet rentals are offered for $10 and I highly recommend them.  There is a lot of speed involved in extreme snow tubing and you want to be as safe as possible. 

We stopped for lunch as a group at 1pm.  Everyone had been given a choice of two different sandwiches that were provided by Urban Escapes while there was also a grill serving fries and grilled cheeses at the lodge if you were craving something warmer. After lunch we went back out to snow tube until it was time to depart for our next destination at 3pm.  Our day was only half over because now it was time to go beer tasting! 

About an hour away from Woodbury, CT, you will find the Captain Lawrence Brewing Company located in Pleasantville, NY.  The tasting room was full of people but we were ushered straight to the back area of the brewery where the beer is actually brewed.  Prior to the actual tasting, we heard an overview of microbrewing and how beer comes to be.  Our tasting included 5 different beers and we were given the opportunity to order growlers of our favorites.  As a beer lover, I thought Captain Lawrence Brewery had some fantastic offerings.  This explains why the tasting room was so full of other happy beer tasters.  Once the growler orders were complete, it was time to head home.  For our group, the bus ride back to the city was very festive as many chose to enjoy their growlers on the trip back.  We arrived back in NYC at approximately 7pm.

This was my first trip with Urban Escapes and it was a lot of fun.  Our guides were very friendly and fun to hang out with during all of the activities.  This is a relatively new company and I will plan to go on more adventures with them in the future.  There are other future snow tubing and beer tasting events that you can sign up for but I recommend doing so quickly as they usually sell out.

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Weekend Ski Getaway in Vermont

If you are looking for more than just a day trip to the slopes, how about a weekend getaway to Vermont?  There are still weekend trips scheduled for this winter season through a variety of companies.  I recently went on a weekend trip to Stowe, Vermont with Zogsports.

For this trip to Stowe, there were enough people going that we had two buses for the group.  We departed on Friday at 4:30pm from the upper west side to try to avoid traffic (although we still ended up barely moving for about an hour trying to get out of the city).  After we were out of the NYC rush hour traffic, it was pretty smooth sailing and there was a scheduled stop in CT for a quick dinner break.  The arrival time at our lodge was close to 11:45pm and once checked in, you could choose to go to the bar for some more socializing or get rest for the next day of skiing.

Included with the trip cost were 2 day lift tickets, a delicious breakfast on both Saturday and Sunday, as well as a group dinner Saturday evening.  We were told when to be ready if we wanted to take the group buses to and from the mountain and there was also a shuttle if you wanted to go at different times.

Zogsports provided an itinerary so that you could choose to go with the group and meet up throughout the day for lunch and other apres ski activities but it was entirely optional.  On Saturday night those who chose to went to a local bar for some live music and drinks after dinner.  The next day I packed up, loaded the bus and went for another full day of skiing.  Our buses left directly from the ski resort at 4:30pm to head back to NY.

I really enjoyed my first trip to Stowe.  There was plenty of terrain to explore so it didn’t get boring.  During this weekend, the ski conditions were great and we even had some snow flurries on Sunday.  It was fun riding in the Stowe gondolas that transported you to different areas of the mountain.  When you needed a break from skiing,  there was a wide variety of food available ranging from a fine dining restaurant at the top of the mountain to the fancy yet more casual offerings at Spruce Lodge.   You could also find cafes that served the usual choices of soup, sandwiches and pizza by the slice if you just wanted a quick snack.

It is always different every trip, but I found that a lot of the people in this particular trip stuck to their own groups.  My friend and I had lots of fun regardless, but I thought there would be more mingling when off the slopes.   Some of the trip leaders would check in with us, but I do wonder how much fun it would have been if I had been there on my own.  I would be happy to go on this trip again next season, but would probably make sure I had a friend to go with me.

Zogsports has some upcoming weekend trips to Mount Snow which is another great Vermont mountain to ski on.  Dynamic Outdoors has a weekend trip to Killington, Vermont planned this February too.  So there are definitely plenty of other opportunities to plan a weekend escape before the ski season ends.