8 activities for kids at the GoPro Mountain Games
The GoPro Mountain Games may be an outdoor lover’s paradise, but that doesn’t mean kids can’t get in on the action. Even though the two big kids events – the Youth Climbing Competition and the Kids Bike Race are sold out this year – there are still plenty of fun activities for young ones. Here are eight fun activities for the kids this weekend in Vail.
Nature Valley Adventure Village: Kayak Tank
The Nature Valley Adventure Village, located at the base of Golden Peak, has the most activities for kids. One of those is the Kayak Tank, a large kiddie pool filled with water. Four kids can participate at a time, and an instructor teaches them how to “sit on top” in the boat. It looks like bumper cars, but with kayaks.
Bosch’s battery-powered bicycles are available to ride out on paved trails. Younger kids can sit in a wagon seating area on bigger cargo bikes, and kids and teens who’ve already learned how to pedal on two wheels can ride right alongside their parents. The Bosch eBike demos are located at the bottom of the stairs outside the Vail Transportation Center and run all day, every day of the Mountain Games.
Head over to Dog Town in Lionshead Village to watch dogs jump after toys into big pools of water. There are usually a ton of other kids watching, and the big splashes give kids the chance to cool off and give parents a wet hug. Pro-tip: if your kid just loves DockDogs, and they’re older than 7, they can register to compete officially with the family dog. Taylor Sharb is a 10-year-old DockDogs competitor, and she’s brought home two medals this year.
Nature Valley Adventure Village: Kids Climbing Wall
Right next to the Kayak Tank, kids can hop in a harness, get on belay and scale their way up a 20-foot climbing tower. It’s continuously running, and the Nature Valley Adventure Village is open from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.
Open from 1 p.m. – 2 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, the Croakies Kids Stand-Up Paddle Challenge allows kids to test their balancing skills. Vying against other kids, each competitor tries to be the first to clean the pool of Croakies’ floating sunglasses and other debris. The Croakies pool is located in L.L. Bean Gear Town on the corner of East Meadow Drive and Willow Bridge Road.
Kids can zip line across the Gore Creek as rafters queue up for races. Located in Gear Town by the Covered Bridge, the zip line is open Saturday 9:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. and Sunday 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Best of all, it’s free.
To get away from the bustle of the games – the Saturday of GoPro Mountain Games is usually the busiest day of the year in Vail – head over to the Betty Ford Alpine Gardens. They have educational exhibits both inside the welcome center and outside in the gardens themselves. Bonus: they also have a playground for kids to run around. The gardens are open every day from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. and are located on South Frontage Road.
Nature Valley Passport
Take the family on a scavenger hunt with Nature Valley. The granola bar company, an official sponsor of the GoPro Games, has three tents set up in Dog Town, Gear Town and Adventure Village. Each booth has “passport” cards. Visit each to collect a stamp, and then turn it in for a chance to win a Yeti cooler bag full of goodies and merchandise for the whole family. Take on the challenge as long as the tents are open.
For more information, check out the “I’m a Family” page on the official GoPro Mountain Games website.
Annual fundraising ski day is Saturday, March 14.