Sledding at Snoqualmie and a stop for pub grub in Issaquah
Good old-fashioned tubing fun is less than an hour outside of Seattle.
Here in Seattle, we’re lucky to have the mountains right on our doorstep, complete with all the active winter sports they offer. For families without skiing or snowboarding experience, tubing offers a great alternative to enjoy some fun in the snow. The Summit Tubing Center at Snoqualmie is a winter wonderland for kiddos who are ready to take it up a notch from sledding. For a reasonable fee, you can enjoy two hours on their excellently maintained hill of 12 individual lanes of groomed snow. The incline is gentle enough to not scare young kids but still works up an exhilarating speed that will thrill kids and adults alike. Even better, there’s an automated tow line that makes your ascent back to the top a breeze. Be sure to book tickets ahead of time and fill out the liability forms on the website before your trip. summitatsnoqualmie.com
Also, keep in mind that difficult winter mountain driving can take all the fun out of an outing up to the Summit and it can be poor conditions up on the pass while sunny and clear in Seattle. Call "511" to get current road conditions and forecasts.
After you’ve worked up an appetite on the tubing runs, stop in Issaquah for a bite to eat on your way home. Rogue Issaquah Brewhouse is a fun, family-friendly spot serving upscale pub grub and plenty of excellent craft beers. There’s a LEGO table to keep your little ones happy, and kid meals are served on a take-home frisbee. 35 W Sunset Way, Issaquah. For something a little different, check out retro ’50s drive-in Triple XXX. The burgers are the size of your plate, and the root beer floats (big enough to share) might be your kids’ new favorite treat. 98 NE Gilman Blvd., Issaquah. facebook.com/IssaquahBrewhouse, triplexrootbeer.com
See also "How to Snowshoe with the Whole Family."