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Winter Recreation is Snow Problem at the YMCA of the Rockies


The temperature is dropping all over the country, but that doesn’t mean your member participation numbers have to drop as well. Instead of shutting the windows and starting a fire, the Snow Mountain Ranch, a branch of the YMCA of the Rockies, leverages the snow and crisp air into exciting opportunities for winter recreation activities.

“The Snow Mountain Ranch has a wide array of winter programming,” said Amy Leet, the brand manager of the Snow Mountain Ranch. “In the mountains, the winter season is just as exciting as the summer season.”

Among the Snow Mountain Ranch’s wide array of winter recreation activities are a dog sledding program, a trail system as part of the Nordic Center and snow tubing, all of which attract local outdoor recreation enthusiasts.

According to Leet, the dog sledding program is one of the most popular programs they offer, and it has three options, each tailored for various experience levels:

  • Short dog sled ride for members who are new to dog sledding.
  • Long dog sled ride for members who want a step up from the short ride.
  • Full immersion dog sled experience.

“The short dog sled ride consists of a two-mile trail that winds through open meadows, with breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains,” said Leet. “The long dog sled rides last 50 minutes and are offered on Friday mornings. And with our new program, the full immersion dog sled experience, you learn everything about dog sledding, from the start of the process to the finish.”

For members who aren’t wild about dog sledding, the Snow Mountain Ranch’s award-winning Nordic Center offers skiing, snowshoeing and fat biking programs on 120 kilometers of groomed Nordic trails.

Winter recreation, fat biking group.

Fat biking is one of several fun activities offered at the Snow Mountain Ranch’s Nordic Center.

“Our Nordic Center was voted one of the top Nordic Centers in the country by USA Today voters,” said Leet. “Our Nordic trails are perfect for members of all ability levels.”

The Snow Mountain Ranch also offers snow tubing, which affords the thrill of hurtling down a mountain while sitting. And according to Leet, it’s a great activity for the whole family. “Our snow tubing hill is the perfect way for the family to have some good, old fashioned fun,” she shared. “Grab a tube and hit the hill in a new way as you zoom across the snow.”

These three popular winter recreation programs, among others, are essential to the Snow Mountain Ranch’s ability to engage members even when it’s cold outside. By leveraging the appeal of the great outdoors, the YMCA of the Rockies is able to effectively keep members active during the winter and further into the year.

“We encourage our guests to get outside and enjoy nature during every season,” said Leet. “We are aiming to help unify families through recreational activities in nature.”

Bobby Dyer

Bobby is the former editor of Community Rec Magazine.

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