Grand County Outdoors: Treat the family to an afternoon of winter fun
March 5, 2008
One of the best kept secrets for winter-time recreation in Grand County is the Winter Fun Park at Snow Mountain Ranch-YMCA of the Rockies near Granby.
The Winter Fun Park offers the public the opportunity to enjoy both a sledding/tubing hill with a cable lift and a roofed ice skating rink. They are located adjacent to the Nordic Center, which is the ranch’s nationally famous cross-country ski center.
“Sledding and ice skating are great activities for families and people of all ages to come out and enjoy at our Winter Fun Park,” said Jeff Schmidt, Nordic Center’s director. “Along with the excellent cross-country skiing we have here, this is a great place for everyone to sample a whole range of winter-time recreation.”
The sledding/tubing hill has its own powered cable lift. It was designed for the tubes that are rented by the Winter Fun Park. However, all sledders and tubers are welcome to use the hill.
The YMCA maintains a three-person staff that operates the cable lift and assists guests with loading and unloading.
“Our staff is there to help and to watch out for everyone’s safety,” Schmidt said. “Our lift has been up and running all winter and will continue as long as there is snow on the hill.”
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The sledding/tubing hill is open seven days a week from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Located next to the sledding hill is the Winter Fun Park’s ice skating rink, called the Legett Pavilion. About half the size of a hockey rink, the oval-shaped rink has a wooden backboard to ensure skater safety.
The rink also has its own indoor rental/fitting room where guests can rent skates or go inside to warm up.
The entire rink and the rental office is covered by a large metal roof. The roof’s purpose is to preserve the ice from direct sunlight and also help keep the area’s heavy snowfall off the ice.
“It’s a natural rink without refrigeration,” Schmidt said. “As long as it stays cold, we’ll have good ice on the rink.”
The Legett Pavilion ice skating rink is open daily from 9 a.m to 5 p.m. On special occasions, it will stay open later. The facility is fully lighted.
“It’s great for birthday parties or other events,” Schmidt said. “If you don’t have your own skates, we have them here and rent them for only a small fee.”
Snow Mountain Ranch’s Nordic Center and Winter Fun Park are open to the general public. Day-use fees are available to non-YMCA members.
For more information, call the Nordic Center at Snow Mountain Ranch-YMCA of the Rockies at (970) 887-2152, ext. 4173.