After a few months of mostly being cooped upside due to the all the cold and snow this winter in Minnesota, my family and I decided we needed to go somewhere fun to get away! So this past weekend we headed to Spirit Mountain in Duluth for an overnight visit to spend some time outside and in the sun. Everything about our stay was perfect, and I’m excited to share the details with you here, plus I’ve partnered with Spirit Mountain to GIVE AWAY a ski package valued at over $1000!
I grew up in Duluth, so I had been to Spirit Mountain to try skiing when I was younger. I wasn’t very good at it, so I hadn’t done it much since, plus I had a knee injury a few years ago that made things like skiing a challenge. But because my family had such a fabulous summer visit to Spirit Mountain Adventure Park a couple years ago, I knew that Spirit Mountain had plenty for everyone besides skiing. And I learned about their tubing hill which lights up at nights on weekends. It’s called Glow Tubing, and I knew my kids would love it!
So, what can you find at Spirit Mountain in the winter? Well, they have 22 downhill runs, the Midwest’s largest Terrain Park, an ever expanding Progression Park, 22 km of Nordic Ski Trails, Fat Biking, and Snow Tubing.
And if you’re new to Skiing or Snowboarding? Good news – they have lesson programs for anyone beginning as early as age 2. Keep reading for more details, but first, back to our amazing weekend!
We left on Sunday and arrived shortly after the 3:00pm check-in time at our hotel, AmericInn in Proctor. (Proctor is a city of about 3000+ people located right next to Duluth.) AmericInn is located just a mile or so north of Spirit Mountain and I-35, and is truly a hidden gem.
The lobby is a grand, northwoods-style space with plenty of space for breakfast (which they serve here) or just playing board games or doing puzzles (which they provide).
Our room had 2 queen beds, a fridge, microwave, coffee maker, and TV, and was comfortable and clean. We didn’t spend much time here though because there was so much to do, but I honestly would love to come back just to relax here!
Spirit Mountain Chalet & Dining
After we checked into the hotel, we headed down the road to the Spirit Mountain Chalet for dinner.
Here at the Chalet they have plenty of tables if you want to bring your own food, plus they have a quick-serve cafe and a sit-down restaurant called the Moosehead Bar & Grill. We ate here because it had a full menu with a kids menu, and great views of one of the skiing hills and of Duluth!
When we were there, they also had live entertainment, so we got to hear some nice music while we ate.
First, we ordered hot cocoas for the kids (yum). Then we ordered hamburgers which were HUGE – they were so good but we could only eat half of them! (But we brought the rest to our room to heat & eat later.) And the people here were super nice – we even met a skiing instructor who sat with us and chatted with us a bit. And outside our window we got to watch the skiiers!
Then it was time for TUBING!
Glow tubing is on Fridays and Saturdays, but also on the Sunday we visited because it was Presidents Day weekend.
The hill was bigger than I expected, and it was so pretty!
But the best part was how you get up the hill. No, you don’t have to walk up the hill! There’s a pulley system that pulls you up. First you choose an individual tube and double tube – they have both so you can go either alone or with someone.
There are three different types of hills that you can pick from to go down, One that’s flat (left), one that’s kind of hilly (middle), and one that’s the most hilly (right). We tried them all and the flat one is definitely the fastest, but the hills were super fun! There’s a team member who will give you a push at the top, and will spin you if you want. (Yes, we tried and recommend everything!)
At the bottom of the hills there are some rubber mat things that help slow you down, as well as a team member to help you if needed.
Swimming & Relaxing at the Hotel
Then after the glow tubing, we headed back to the hotel for swimming! Now, I have to say, all hotel pools are different, and some are warmer than others. Thankfully, this one was nice and warm so we could all go right in without shivering!
They also had a nice hot tub (which I spent a LOT of time in).
Morning & Breakfast
In the morning before breakfast I used the fitness center, which was near the pool and had an elliptical machine, a treadmill, a weights machine, an exercise ball and mat. There was also a TV, and it was nice and cool so I got a good workout.
Now, breakfast. Ok. I don’t know how else to start talking about the breakfast here other than to say I was VERY impressed!
Breakfast is available for all guests from 6:00am – 10:00am, and it had absolutely everything you can imagine.
- Eggs (real ones)
- French toast
- A belgian waffle and pancake maker, with strawberry sauce, whipped cream, and syrup available
- Ham (I think they have different meats every day)
- Oatmeal (real, in a kettle) with plenty of toppings
- Cold cereal
- Milk including chocolate milk
- Bread, bagels and english muffins plus peanut butter, jelly, and cream cheese
- Muffins, donuts and other pastries
- Fresh fruit
- Hard-boiled eggs
- And of course, COFFEE & TEA, with flavored creamers and syrups
I think we sampled almost everything.
At breakfast, I chatted with another guest who was visiting with his wife from Canada. We talked about how great the hotel was, and he said he and his wife have been to several hotels in the area but this is the one they kept coming back to.
I will say that compared to other hotel breakfasts, this was the best I’ve ever had. For example, the eggs at hotels aren’t always real or may be weird tasting, but these were REAL and DELICIOUS. Everything else was high quality, too. I just wish I had a bigger stomach!
After we filled up, we checked out of the hotel and then did some local shopping (Miller Hill Mall isn’t far away). Then we came back for tubing which started at 12:00pm.
Tubing during the day was as good as at night, and skies were clear and the weather was perfect!
Here was the view as my son and I went down one of the hills!
A view from the top of the hills…we were about to go down the hilly one.
After we went tubing a while, it was time to head home. But what a fun trip we had! I highly recommend Spirit Mountain for a visit anytime of year. It makes for a great spring break getaway too!
I think if I get my knee repaired I’ll definitely have to try skiing, but if you have never been skiing at Spirit Mountain before, THIS is the place to go. The views of Duluth are incredible, and there truly is something for everyone.
Spirit Mountain Kids Program
There’s so much for kids at Spirit Mountain! Spirit Mountain offers a variety of winter kids ski and snowboard programs and lessons for children starting from the tiniest tots at age 2 (yes, age 2!) through the teenage years.
Winter Kids Skiing & Snowboarding Program (Ages 4-12)
The “Winter Kids” Skiing Program is available for kids starting at age four through 12 years-old and is offered every day Spirit Mountain is open during the winter months. Since snowboarding takes more muscle development to control the board than skiing, the Winter Kids Snowboarding program starts at age six.
- A full-day program runs from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. and includes a lift ticket, rental equipment, group lesson and lunch for $79 per child, plus tax. After the session is complete; the ticket remains valid for the remainder of the day.
- A half-day session is also available and includes a two-hour lift ticket, rental equipment and lesson for $69 per child, plus tax. Half-day sessions run at 10 a.m.- noon or 1 p.m. – 3 p.m. and after the session the ticket can be upgraded to a full-day for $5.
Families can also purchase four-packs of Winter Kids Programs that can be used for kids within the same family. The packs are valid for use on Friday through Sunday, as well as holidays and are priced at $239 for a full-day session or $209 for a half-day session, plus tax.
Learn to Ski & Ride Package (Ages 13 and up)
Spirit Mountain’s “Learn to Ski & Ride” package is designed for teens age 13 and up. Each program includes a beginner lift ticket, rental equipment and 1.5- hour lesson. These programs are designed to accelerate the learning curve by utilizing beginner specific equipment with an innovative teaching technique to maximize enjoyment the first time on the snow. Programs are priced at $69 per person, plus tax and offered daily at 10 a.m., 1 p.m., 3 p.m. or 5 p.m.
Wee-Ski & Wee-Board (Ages 2-4)
If you want to introduce the smallest members of the family to skiing and boarding you can sign up for the Wee-Ski & Wee-Board program. This session is all about introducing children to the sport of skiing and snowboarding in a fun and playful 45-minute introductory lesson. The cost is $40 per child and includes lesson and rental equipment.
Fourth Graders Ski Free!
I’ve posted before that Fourth Graders in Minnesota can SKI FOR FREE at participating ski areas. Spirit Mountain participates in this program, and parents and siblings of passport holders can receive $10 off full day lift tickets here. (Learn more on Spirit Mountain’s website.)
Spirit Mountain Reservations and Events
To make reservations, please call the Spirit Mountain Snow Sports Department at (218) 624-8516. For more information on the Winter Kids Programs and Lessons at Spirit Mountain, visit https://www.spiritmt.com/lessons-camps.
For more information!
Want a Ski Experience Closer to Home?
Spirit Mountain is part of the Midwest Ski Areas Association which includes resorts throughout Minnesota, including also Wild Mountain, Bucks Hill, Mount Kato, Powder Ridge, Afton Alps and more. Learn more on their website.
Enter to win a Spirit Mountain Ski Package with 4 two-day lift tickets and rentals (value = $1032)! This is a whole weekend of skiing fun for a family of four! Enter by filling out the Rafflecopter form below by Sunday, March 3rd at 11:00pm. You can submit up to 9 entries! Winner will be randomly selected, entry verified, and contacted by email within 24 hours.
Please note: If you click “I commented” under “Leave a Blog Post Comment” be sure to actually leave a blog post comment because if you win and you didn’t leave a comment but said you did, you’ll be disqualified and I’ll choose another winner! (Sadly, this has happened many times but I need to be fair to those who enter correctly!)
(Disclosure: We were generously provided with accommodations and tickets to facilitate this post and giveaway. All opinions are 100% mine.)