Snozone is an indoor snow slope (with real snow!) within the Xscape complex. There is one at Castleford, West Yorkshire, and Milton Keynes, Bucks. Snozone is popular with budding and experienced skiiers and snowboarders, but not everyone knows that they also do sledging and sliding sessions.
Sledging on real snow in August is a bit of a novelty. Actually, it wasn’t very busy when we went on a weekday during the school holidays. It was certainly a lot busier when we last visited at Christmas.
Snozone is in the Xscape complex which comprises shops, eateries, and other fun stuff to do like adventure golf, and climbing walls.
Snozone has plenty of toilets and changing facilities, and is pretty well organised. There is snow equipment to borrow (included in the price) if you need it. For sledging you will need waterproof clothing like gloves and wellies, and you borrow a helmet – everyone must use one! The snow is very fluffy and you will get pretty damp, so take a change of warm clothing for afterwards.
You collect your sledging pass from the desk – allow around 30 minutes beforehand – and put your clothing on. Collect your helmet from the rack, and then wait for your session coach. You are then taken down as a group to the sledging racks where you collect a sledge each, and then out on to the slope where you get a very short safety brief before being let loose.
We got 45 minutes on the dedicated slope, with the ice-tubes opening a few minutes after the start of the session. This is very fast and a little bumpy and suitable for children aged from seven years.
The three-year olds absolutely loved the sledging, and my older girls loved the ice-slide the most.
It was A LOT of fun. We love sledging and have missed it this year what with the complete lack of snow last winter, so getting to do it indoors is a great idea. The 45 minutes just whizzed by, but we were allowed a cheeky last slide each before our turn was over.
A little bit damp, we returned to the changing rooms to get into some warm, dry clothing, and slope off (geddit?) to get some welcome hot chocolates.
For more information about family sledging sessions, and skiiing and snowboarding, please check out the Snozone website.
Top tips –
You can’t take a camera on the slope – we were given special permission for the few that I took – but there is a pro photographer who is very good. The quality of the pics are great and I don’t think they’re too expensive. If you want some nice family snow shots taken, just ask the photographer.
You will need £1 (non-returnable) for your locker. The lockers are pretty big – we managed to get all our things in to one – but they are on a first-come-first-served basis.
There is a bar overlooking the slope with a nice cafe and a soft play area if you don’t fancy getting cold yourself.
Here are some of the photos taken by the pro photographer Patrick, who was very good and had a camera with the necessary fast speeds!
Disclosure – we were given tickets to be able to try out the sessions and facilities