Picture this: The sun is shining, there’s a crisp blanket of snow on the ground, and you’ve got the day off with the kids. What, are you just going to sit indoors, eyes glued to the TV, twiddling your thumbs? Heck no! Fresh air and the great outdoors are not off limits just because it’s kinda cold outside. Not at all. For your health and sanity, we suggest you bundle up, get the whole family together, and hit the slopes for some exhilarating sledding action. Or tubing. Anything that’ll let you fly down that hill with unmatched speed and bumbling grace.
But where are the best spots to go? Well, it just so happens that readers of our sister publication Chippewa Valley Family picked their top three favorite local sledding hills in our first-ever Family Favorites reader poll this past fall, and there are some doozies to pick from. Check it out:
1. Pinehurst Hill
3523 Delbert Road • Eau Claire
Pinehurst is simply one of the best, and our readers recognized that giving it the most votes. On Eau Claire’s north side, the behemoth Pinehurst Hill stands as the mother of all sledding hills. This formidable giant was a downhill ski run with a towrope throughout the early ’70s, and now it’s taking shape as a winter recreation mecca right in our backyard. Sledding and tubing make for a fun day, but you could also snowshoe, cross-country ski, or hit the ice rink if you’re feeling adventurous.
2. 7 Bumps
822 Emery St. • Eau Claire
Right next to the Forrest Hill Cemetery on the Eastside Hill, 7 Bumps (a.k.a Forrest Hill / a.k.a. Dead Man’s Hill) is steep but straightforward, with no major obstacles – just the thing for little ones (or weak-hearted parents). Its easy accessibility has made it a favorite among area snowboarders, tubers, and sledders alike. It’s easy to get to and primed for winter fun, so stop by sometime.
3. North Star Middle School
2711 Abbey Hill Drive • Eau Claire
The hill behind Northstar Middle School is close to Pinehurst Hill but offers a much smaller slope. Since you won’t have to climb up quite as far, that means more trips down until your cheeks get rosy and your toes are almost numb. But be careful! If it’s extra slick there’s a chance you could run into the school itself if you don’t swerve. And no one wants to go to school on a snow day…