We love to plan winter trips to North Carolina to offer our girls a chance to play in the snow. The weather during this year’s trip to Boone, North Carolina called for snow showers, but to this Florida girl it felt like blizzard conditions. Unfortunately, the heavy snow and wind made it difficult to do anything outdoors. As much as we wanted to drive along the Blue Ridge Parkway, visit Grandfather Mountain or climb Chimney Rock, all those activities were simply out of the question due to the weather.
Snow tubing at Hawksnest Resort in Seven Devils was also on the top of our tourist “To Do List”, however, that didn’t seem to not be in the cards the first few days of our trip. Each day, we visited Hawksnest’s website for updates on their activities, but the weather conditions made driving to the top of the mountain and snow tubing far too dangerous.
Of course, when we finally made it to Hawksnest, the girls had a fabulous time! Emmalynn and I rode together the first few times until she decided she was brave to tackle snow tubing alone.
Feeling a little less adventurous, Allana rode with Dad a few more times. Once she noticed Emmalynn’s lack of fear, Allana attempted once alone and then her fear slipped away down the slope as well.
Since I lacked the specifics on how to snow tube, the friendly Hawksnest staff gave me a few pointers along with a big push down the slope. Of course, when one staff member heard I was from Florida, he teased me relentlessly. Hey, I know water sports not winter sports!
The trick to snow tubing is to use your heel as a break. Given my height, I discovered I lacked the ability to break. I heard a rumor that if you ride on your belly, then you could use your toe as a break, but I wasn’t willing to try belly tubing with a bun in the oven.
I quickly learned the importance of lifting my rear when approaching blocks of ice on the slope…the hard way. (No pun intended.) The bruise on my backside would become a lovely North Carolina souvenir. I went snow tubing and all I got was this lousy bruise.
I also tried my butt hand on the tallest slope (~1000 feet), but preferred the smaller slopes. The height didn’t bother me, but the constant spinning at full speed down the slope reminded me of the Mad Tea Party Ride at the Magic Kingdom. Since I felt as though I would produce chunks on the slope other than piles of ice, I stopped myself about 3/4 of the way down and walked the remainder of the way.
After riding solo, the girls wanted to try tubing together, but only one ride down the slope proved that to be a bad idea. When the girls hit an ice wall, Allana lost control and Emmalynn was propelled out of the tube. She landed face first on the slope. Thankfully, the staff ran to Emmalynn’s rescue and carried her to the bottom. Poor thing scratched her face, bruised her forehead and was terrified to go alone again. She rode with Dad for the remainder of our session.
Two hours later at the slopes, we were all happy that we finally hit the slopes in more ways than one and ready for more snow tubing hot cocoa and delicious cookies as big as our head at the snack bar.