Hometown Tourist: Boyne Mountain Zip Line & Tubing Adventure
For a winter zip high above the trees or a ride low in the snow, you can get your adrenaline fix at Boyne Mountain.
We start the day at the Adventure Center and suit up for our first endeavor. That’s where we meet Emily, just one of three zip tour guides… and often my moral support.
“We have three certified guides that go with you, and they’ll take care of everything, you just sit back and enjoy the ride” explains Adventure Center Manager Greg Mastin. “The guides take care of the whole trip and that’s one thing we pride ourselves on is having some great guides who really create the experience for you as well as the zip line.”
To get to the first zip, we ride the six-man chair lift all the way to the top of the mountain. The snow is thick and almost slush-like with heavy winds…goggles are a good choice.
We arrive at the first line and my nerves are about as high as the sights.
“Alright come on and step on up!” Emily exclaims.
I inch off the wooden platform, rushing into a free fall feeling before the harness scoops me up for the ride. It’s a whirlwind blur of snow-covered trees and loud screams to the other side. I’m hooked.
Ensuring a zero-chance of crash landing is Brett, our breaker guide. And then there’s Erik who catches us before any trees. Zip as often as them and you’ll be able to flip, tuck like a cannon ball….and even ride upside down, spidey-style. Me? I never quite make it there.
The entire winter course has nine lines with the highest elevation at 50 feet with speeds up to 25 miles per hour. The last zip is a twin station built for racing. It’s the longest zip at 780 feet with a drop off that’s jaw-dropping. We climb the dozen-plus stairs to the platform and my butterflies multiply by minute.
I’m racing Tyler, one of our zip mates for the afternoon who happens to also work at Boyne Mountain. We step up to the single chain, protecting us from the 50 foot drop. And then it’s count down time.
And the competition only continues over at the tubing hill. But here, no harass needed. Just grab a tube, settle in and ride to the top. Yes, ride to the top… no walking here.
“I think the only thing that could make this more relaxing would be like…hot chocolate service on the ride up,” I say to my tube mates.
But even without the cocoa, this ride is one you don’t want to miss. Get a push or a running start, and you’ll be catching air in no time.
I grip my handles, run and jump into the slick line and fly over the first, then second and third hill before gliding onto the landing strip. It’s an easy, exhilarating and zero-experience required winter fun.
“We have many guests who come here who are not skiers or snowboarders or maybe they’re new to the sport,” Mastin explained. “This is an opportunity to get outside and play in the snow … it’s just an exciting way to get out!”