Best Snow Tubing for Kids Near San Diego
January 12, 2024

Put on your winter clothes, grab the tube, and hit the slopes in one of the best snow tubing spots near San Diego for a day of wintry fun with kids and the whole family!

The snow is falling, and that would only mean one thing — it’s time to plan a perfect winter getaway with the family. And one of the top choices for kids to do during the winter season is snow tubing. It is among the easiest and most affordable winter activities for all ages because there’s no need for special equipment or skill level. You just have to hop on an inflatable tube, whoosh your way down the snow-covered hill, and have a blast. So, get ready for some frosty adventure and explore the best spots for snow tubing near San Diego with your kids!

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Planning a winter trip around San Diego may sound odd, but believe it or not — you don’t have to leave SoCal to experience winter wonderlands. Within a few hours, you can drive and discover unique spots to enjoy real snow with the entire family. And if your kids are not ready to try skiing and snowboarding, snow tubing is a great option to get started on your winter adventure. It’s the perfect way to experience the thrills of sliding down the white-capped hills and take a magic carpet ride back to the top of the slope without the need for some training.

If you are looking for a fun snow day with the family this winter season, you don’t have to go far to find it. We’ve calculated the distance from San Diego to help you plan your winter excursion to the nearest snow destinations. See below our list of the best go-to spots for snow tubing near San Diego with your kids that will surely make up your winter bucket list. Check the weather forecast, bundle up with warm coats and wraps, drive up to the mountains, and enjoy a taste of winter wonderland!

Best Snow Tubing for Kids Near San Diego

Best snow tubing for kids near San Diego - Snow Valley Mountain Resort
Photo by: Snow Valley Mountain Resort

Snow Valley Mountain Resort

35100 State Highway 18, Running Springs, CA 92382  
Phone Number: (909) 867-2751

The Snow Valley Mountain Resort has a dedicated snow play area at the base of the mountain near the Sun Deck. Little kids can run around in the white stuff, make snow angels, and build snowmen. Children six and older can buy passes to the downhill sled area. Sledders can walk to the top of the hill or take a chairlift.

From the steeps of Slide Peak to extended cruising intermediate trails to the region’s best beginner terrain to Southern California’s only chairlift-serviced sledding area, Snow Valley has something for everyone during winter. Enjoy sledding at Snow Valley, which offers the longest runs in the region.

Best snow tubing for kids near San Diego - Snowdrift Snow Tubing Park
Photo by: Snowdrift Snow Tubing Park

Snowdrift Snow Tubing Park

34600 Hwy. 18, Running Springs, CA 92382
Phone Number: (866) 942-2824

For the best snow tubing for kids near San Diego, head up to a little-known spot tucked away in the San Bernardino National Forest near Lake Arrowhead. Snowdrift Snow Tubing Park is SoCal’s oldest and largest snow tubing park. Beginner, intermediate, and advanced runs are available to riders, so there’s something for everyone in the family. There are no fancy lifts here, but there are stairs for your climbing convenience.

The elevation is about 6,500 feet, allowing fresh air and snow, and features feet of crisp snow. There are seven hills to choose from for tubing. Tubes have belly straps and handles, and tubing is relatively orderly with a per-hour system. Surround yourself with towering pines at this tubing park four miles east of Running Springs.

Best snow tubing for kids near San Diego - Mt. Baldy Snow Play Park
Photo by: Mt. Baldy

Mt. Baldy Snow Play Park

8401 Mt. Baldy Rd., Mt. Baldy, CA 91759
Phone Number: (909) 982-0800 

Situated at 8,000 ft. elevation, Mt Baldy Resort is another quick mountain getaway for experiencing snow in Southern California. The resort has recently introduced a Snow Play Park, which is excellent for snow tubing and snow play due to the resort’s special tubing section. The tubing park has snow tubing lanes for sliding and walking with a stopping hill at the bottom.

They provide tubes with a hard shell sliding surface for a faster speed and an inflated inner tube for a smooth ride. While still on the expensive side, the 3 hours tubing experience, which is more affordable, gives you enough time to enjoy the mountains and the tubing experience. An all-day pass includes a round-trip Scenic Lift Ticket and unlimited day access to the Snow Play Park.

Yeti’s Snow Play
Photo by: Mountain High Resort

Yeti’s Snow Play

24510 State Highway 2, Wrightwood, CA 92397
Phone Number: (888) 754-7878

Discover a world of winter just an hour and a half from downtown San Diego. Heralded as Southern California’s closest winter resort with no mountain driving, Mountain High is worth a visit. The Tubing Park is located at the North Resort and has a basic bar/restaurant adjacent. Moving carpet lifts means no lugging up the hill, and tubers get a solid push down the slope by attendants who are happy to strive for the longest run possible.

Slide down one of the ten tubing lanes, meet the Yeti and his friends, or have lunch at the Grand View Lodge located at 8,200 ft. Remember to dress warmly, and bring your gloves and appropriate shoes. The all-day tickets will grant you access to tubing, sledding, snow play, and scenic sky chairs on Mountain High Resort, plus access to all the food and retail shops on the mountain, tables with fire pits, photo ops with Yeti himself, and free parking.

Big Bear Snow Play
Photo by: Big Bear Snow Play

Big Bear Snow Play

42825 Big Bear Blvd., Big Bear Lake, CA 92315
Phone Number: (909) 585-0075 

Big Bear Snow Play is the perfect location for all-day family fun. When it is cold enough, they make their snow. Whether natural or artificial, you’ll have a fun, packed day on its big snow playhill. Excellent snow-making conditions at Big Bear Snow Play mean plenty of beautiful, fluffy white snow for families to slide downhill. Its recreation area sports powerful Lenko fan guns that blanket the hill.

Families can make memories at night, too, as Big Bear Snow Play opens for after-dark tubing sessions. Inner tubing after dark is cast under a new light at Big Bear Snow Play with red, blue, green, and even black lights. Natural and man-made snow combine to provide an excellent base for inner tubing, snowmen building, and other family fun.

Grizzly Ridge Tube Park
Photo by: Big Bear Mountain Resort

Grizzly Ridge Tube Park

880 Summit Blvd., Big Bear Lake, CA 92315
Phone Number: (844) 462-2327

Experience SoCal’s snow capital for yourself this winter. Located at Snow Summit, the Grizzly Ridge Tube Park is great for outdoor enthusiasts of all ages. Skip the hiking and take a magic carpet to the top of the tube park, then slide down our 4 (four) 300-foot tubing lanes as fast as you can in one of our high-speed tubes. A tubing ticket gets you unlimited laps at the tube park during that time slot. Riders must be at least 42” tall and at least 40 lb.

Snow tubes cannot be shared, and reservations must be reserved at least one day before arrival. Guests may buy the day off at the ticket windows if spots remain available. Helmets are not required but are available to rent. Tubing is offered during the winter and summer months. In addition to tubing, you’ll find plenty of spots for Big Bear snow play for the younger kids and ziplining.

Alpine Slide at Magic Mountain
Photo by: Alpine Slide at Magic Mountain

Alpine Slide at Magic Mountain

800 Wildrose Ln., Big Bear Lake, CA 92315
Phone Number: (909) 866-4626

The Magic Mountain Recreation Area in Big Bear Lake is home to the world-famous Alpine Slide — Southern California’s only authentic bobsled experience. Start your day with a scenic chairlift ride and panoramic views of beautiful Big Bear Lake and the surrounding mountains. Zip down its freshly packed snow slopes and ride back up the hill on its Magic Carpet conveyor lift, covered for your comfort. Five Lenko Fan snow guns blanket the area’s five runs with enough snow to build a pack 20 feet deep or more.

The Alpine Slide at Magic Mountain also features a toboggan run known as the Alpine Slide. They light up the hill and the Magic Carpet for their evening sessions, and best of all, you don’t need any special skills or equipment rentals to experience this fun, family-friendly activity. Night sessions run on Fridays, Saturdays, and holidays. There is also mini golf, go-karts, and other rides, weather permitting.

Woolly’s Tube Park & Snow Play
Photo by: Mammoth Mountain

Woolly’s Tube Park & Snow Play

9000 Minaret Rd., Mammoth Lakes, CA 93546\
Phone Number: (800) 626-6684

Find more massive fun at the revamped Woolly’s Tube Park. Catch a ride to the top on the new Magic Carpet, then move down even longer lanes in a high-speed snow tube. More lanes mean fewer wait times, so you can squeeze in laps as fast as you dare. There’s fun for all ages with a viewing area, a giant snow play area with an additional magic carpet, and a snack bar offering hot cocoa and adult beverages.

Even the littlest ones will find big fun in the snow play area where they can ride the merry-go-round tubes, build a snowman, shred on a surf sled, and even hang out with everyone’s favorite fuzzy mascot, Woolly. Take your kids snow tubing at Mammoth, but this mountain town offers more than just the best ski resorts near San Diego.

Best Snow Tubing for Kids Near San Diego

Despite its typically warm weather, finding a fantastic place to see real snow in SoCal is not impossible. There is plenty of access to ski resorts and snow tubing parks via short day trips for a spontaneous family snow day. There’s just so much fun for kids to enjoy snow tubing near San Diego and make some new wintertime family memories. So, pack up your car and head to the snow-capped mountains nearby for some frozen adventure and frosty fun that will leave your kids grinning from ear to ear!

San Diego offers so many opportunities for kids to enjoy and have fun all year round! Check out our list of resources, or browse through our things to do in San Diego with kids.

Still looking for more winter activities for kids in San Diego? No problem! Check out our comprehensive listing of places to go in the region and our highly recommended seasonal blog posts.

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