Ruidoso’s Winter Park is a popular destination at the bottom of Sierra Blanca in Alto, New Mexico, offering tubing, the Screaming Eagle Mountain Coaster, as well as a family zipline. In the winter, they also have VIP Igloo Packages and s’mores making areas for truly special days out.
Grab your kids, wrap up in layers, gloves, goggles and grippy-boots, and set your alarms- you’ll want to get there early to avoid the crowds and lines!
Take a picnic- they have tables, or buy some pizza or other hot snacks from the food trucks (we recommend their hot chocolate!). There’s also a zone where you can toast some s’mores and marshmallows.
If you’re looking for a morning or afternoon out, this is the perfect winter stop for you and the kids.
WHEN: Open November 23 – March 24, Friday – Monday 10am – 5pm. The weeks of December 17 – 31, January 1 – 8, and March 10 – 24 have a daily opening from 9am – 5pm.
WHERE: 121 Ski Run Road, Alto, New Mexico
Before we discover what’s on offer at Ruidoso Winter Park, let’s answer a very important question:
What Should I Wear To Ruidoso Winter Park?
First, you’ll need to dress in layers, so you can take away or add depending how hard the sun is shining or how much snow ends up down your neck after that snowball fight!
Second, we recommend winter boots with good traction for the snow tubing, as you will be walking on ice and snow and will need to put your feet down to help stop you at the bottom.
Third, bring either goggles or glasses to protect your eyes from the sun and flying snow!
There’s an onsite shop with clothes you can buy.
Now let’s have a look at what you can do at the Ruidoso Winter Park. Be sure to read through our “Good To Know” tips at the bottom to make your visit go more smoothly and more pleasantly!
The Zipline Ride
Great for all ages 4+, the popular 300 feet long family zipline at Ruidoso Winter Park zips you down from a 30-foot high tower to the ground. There are parallel lines, so you can go down with a friend, or so two siblings can take the plunge together!
You must be 40” minimum, 45 lbs minimum and 250 lbs maximum to ride the zipline. Wait times can vary.
One Zipline Ride: $10
Three Zipline Rides: $25
Ruidoso’s Winter Park has tubing year round, but it’s the winter runs that pull the biggest crowds, promising an awesome day of snowy family fun on New Mexico’s best snow tubing hill.
There are different levels of runs, from slow ‘n’ easy to fast and hard, and you can ride single or tandem on any of the slopes. As the day progresses (and if there is no fresh snow), the runs become slippery slides of ice, which only increases the thrill factor! Speed and spin downhill alone or with friends, bumping over hills and sliding round bends. And there’s no need to waste energy walking uphill, as the Ruidoso Winter Park’s magic carpets will take you up.
Ages 4+: $38 for a three-hour session.
Under 3s: FREE (though there are height limits for having kids on your lap, so your smallest ones will be limited to the Penguin Park or playing in the snow near the courtyard.
The wait times can be long, and as most tickets have a 3-hour limit, you might find yourself getting just three rides out of it and spending more time in a line than tubing. Get there early on a weekday to make the most of it.
“Our tubing area has more lift capacity and the largest snow-making system in the Rockies. We are constantly making snow to supplement the natural snow and to provide the best tubing experience possible!”– Management
All tickets are good for 3 hours from the time you arrive, or until end of day (whichever is shorter), unless you’re visiting on a Bonus Day, when your ticket is good for the entire day.
Important to know is that there are different kinds of tubing hills – some which require you to grab a vinyl tube, and others which require a non-vinyl tube. Signage in past years has been limited-to-non-existent, so be sure to ask a member of staff whether you have the right tube before you line up for a particular tube run.
We’ve also read complaints of shouty/rude staff. While we ourselves experienced only friendly faces, we can understand that the safety risks of snow play and the movement of huge, excited crowds passing through the property might make some shouting necessary to keep order and to keep people safe. Just something to have in mind when you go.
The VIP Igloo Package
The Ruidoso Winter Park VIP Igloo Package is the ideal way to spend a day having fun with family and friends unbothered by a time-limit, and with your own cozy space to rest in between snow time.
The Igloo Package lets your family and friends enjoy an entire day of tubing fun with a base in the Igloo Village, a separate area that is only accessible to Igloo customers and has private fire pits and picnic tables for you to make use of. Each Igloo can accommodate 8, though the package is for 6 people, with an additional charge per extra person.
The Ruidoso Winter Park Igloo Package Includes:
- 6 all-day tubing passes (up to 2 additional all-day tubing passes may be added to the package for $50 each) – but there are no “skip-the-line” privileges, so you will have to line up like everyone else!
- Full day use of a private Igloo. Each Igloo has a heater, table and chairs, and access to the Igloo Village fire pits
- A hostess to take care of all your needs
- A S’mores kit
- 50% off all zipline and mountain coaster tickets (when open)
- Reserved parking
- An X-Large Pizza with your choice of toppings
- 6 drinks…and the freedom to bring your own additional food or drinks
Hiring an Igloo or two is also a great way to celebrate a loved one’s birthday or another special occasion. Organize it in advance and your hostesses can have your Igloo(s) decorated and ready for you!
Igloo hire per day: $500 (for up to 6 people).
Additional Guest (Limit 2): $50/person.
Penguin Park For The Littlest Tubers
Penguin Park offers a gentle mini-tubing space, with small tubes and a small walk-up hill, for those 42” or under. Parents or guardians can enter to help them, but can’t tube with them.
The Screaming Eagle Mountain Coaster
As long as weather permits, Ruidoso’s much-loved Screaming Eagle Mountain Coaster will also be open throughout the holiday season.
Each car seats two – a driver and a rider. Don’t worry – there is a special crash-avoidance system built in for a safe ride. Drivers must be over 9 years old and riders 3+. Further, the driver must be at least 52” tall, while minimum height requirements for the rider are 36” tall.
This is the only Mountain Coaster in the state of New Mexico, promising a ride of up to 25 mph on 5100 feet of waves, dips, and a 360-degree helix!
Tickets start at $25.
Keep your eyes open for annual special events at Ruidoso Winter Park. Mid-December, they have a “Toys for Tots” day, where, if you bring a new, unwrapped toy (for a boy or girl) worth $10, you will receive a free tubing ticket.
In February, the “Food 4 Kids Backpack Program” asks guests to bring $10 worth of non-perishable food items, and in return they will get a free tubing ticket.
They also have Bonus Days throughout the month. Snow tubing tickets bought for use on Bonus Days give you an all-day pass for snow tubing.
The Yeti Fest
At Yeti Fest, you can celebrate with Eddie the Yeti. Dress up in a Yeti (or other snow-related) costume. All Yetis get a free snow tubing ticket!
At Yeti Fest you can expect lots of fun for the kids, with games, giveaways, live music, face painting, a YETI cake eating contest, and more.
Good To Know
Ruidoso sells tickets online (which, they say, guarantees you entrance if they reach capacity, over those who turn up on the day without tickets), yet you still have to line up to check in, confirm you signed a waiver, and get your tags.
All participants must sign a release of liability waiver. Fill these in online to save a bit of time when you arrive. You can find the waiver on their website and in your confirmation email if you buy tickets online.
The online tickets give you no special privileges to skip the lines. Not even hiring an Igloo gives you such privileges, unfortunately.
If you are not tubing and are only there to watch the kids, you can enter free of charge.
Get there early because parking is limited. Lockers are available but are also limited in quantity.
Rides at Ruidoso Winter Park are open-air and so are totally dependent on the weather being good. Storms, heavy rain and other strong weather may lead to a shut-down. In such cases, tickets cannot be refunded, but can be used another day – speak to staff if you have questions about this.
There are food trucks offering a selection of food. You can also bring food or drinks in with you. There is a courtyard with picnic tables available.
You can bring your pet along but it must be kept on a leash while in the park, and kept with someone in your group at all times. Pets are not allowed on the tubing hill.
The Ruidoso Winter Park makes for a great snowy day out with family and friends – with hillside snow tubing, ziplining and picnicking possibilities. It can be expensive if you get caught in the crowds, though (meaning you might spend more time queuing than tubing), so aim to get there at opening time or as early as possible to get the most out of your visit. Live in NM or sticking around for a while? Why not make the most of it and take a trip to some of the states’ best hot springs!
While we at Traxplorio do our very best to give you the most up-to-date information, we always recommend you do your own research before you travel to a particular area or visit a specific destination, and check conditions with relevant official authorities. Thanks for understanding, and enjoy your adventure!