Ober Gatlinburg Ski Area will open their 7th snow tubing season on Saturday, November 22nd, 2014. With advanced snowmaking technology, known as SnowMagic, Ober Gatlinburg was able to begin snowmaking on October 8th and plans to operate tubing until early spring.
The tubing lanes are 400 feet long with a 50 foot vertical drop and are serviced by a moving conveyor lift which transports riders and their tubes quickly and smoothly to the top of the runs. Different than open-hill sledding, the tubing park’s expertly shaped lanes guide custom tubes down a course designed to deliver an exhilarating ride. The Snow Tubing schedule this weekend will be 11a.m. until 7p.m. on Saturday, 9 a.m. until 7 p.m. on Sunday, with 1.5 hour sessions beginning every two hours. Rates per session are $20 on weekdays and $25 on weekends and holidays.
Ober Gatlinburg will now offer advanced tubing ticket sales. Guests can purchase tubing tickets up to three days in advance at the downtown location at 1001 Parkway. “Day of” tubing tickets and advanced tubing tickets are available for purchase at 1339 Ski Mountain Road. “Day of” tubing tickets will not be sold at the downtown ticket location. All tubing ticket sales must be made in person, and is on a first come, first serve basis. Snow tubing is a great way for ages 3 and above to experience the fun of winter recreation. Adjacent to the tubing park is an enclosed viewing area with a snack bar and the Ober Mountain Outfitters, where you can rent insulated clothing and purchase other cold weather gear.
The SnowMagic Infinite Crystals Snowmaking (ICS) system is revolutionary and completely different from other snowmaking systems that require temperatures below freezing. The ICS system freezes water to create tiny snow crystals in temperatures above freezing. Using its controlled and cooled forced-air technology, the snow crystals are blown out with explosive force, creating snow with a natural feel and texture at an average micron size of 0.3 millimeters in diameter. The ICS technology uses no chemicals in the process. The environmentally friendly snow can be recycled and reused after melting. When temperatures permit, conventional snow making machines are utilized.
“We are excited about the prospects of a great season.” said Bruce Anders, President of Ober Gatlinburg, Inc., “The SnowMagic system allows us to offer snow tubing to our guests much earlier and gives us the capability to maintain the quality of the tubing surface in the event we experience another unusually mild winter.”
The slopes will officially open to the public for the 2014/15 ski and snowboarding season as soon as temperatures allow for dependable opportunities to make enough snow for a sufficient base. Ober Gatlinburg features ten trails serviced by two quad lifts, one double lift and one surface lift. The resort offers terrain for all abilities, from a beginner experiencing the joy of snow sports for the first time, to a seasoned expert hitting the moguls and terrain park. Ober Gatlinburg also has a popular snow tubing park, skiing and snowboarding equipment and clothing rentals, an ice skating rink, aerial tramway, Seasons of Ober Restaurant and the Loft Lounge at Ober, The Shops at Ober and more.