Family & kids | Jan 4, 2024

5 tips for memorable sledging adventures with children

Marietta Hoffmann
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Sledging is a fantastic family activity. There’s hardly anything more exhilarating than gliding from the mountain peaks down to the valley, squealing at the top of your lungs. To ensure your sledging trip with children becomes a memorable one, we’ve compiled several helpful tips. With these preparations, your outing in nature is guaranteed to become an amazing experience for all family members.

The ideal age for children to start sledging

Wondering when it’s the right time to take your children sledging? This fun activity is, of course, not suitable for newborns. But toddlers under the age of five can already swoosh down the mountain on a sledge with a backrest and perhaps a harness for extra safety. If you have a wooden sledge, you can either retrofit a seat or become the “backrest” yourself and head down the mountain sitting behind your child.


Prepare adequately with the help of a packing list

Tip #1

Once your child is the right age for sledging, you can start thinking about everything you need for the adventure. The following checklist helps you ensure you have all the essentials with you:

  • high-quality sledge (consider whether you’re sledging together or separately, with or without a children’s seat)
  • lambskin for the seating surface of the sledge
  • protective helmets for both you and your child
  • sturdy shoes, possibly with crampons for icy routes
  • warm clothing and spare clothes for kids, including hats, scarves and gloves
  • drinks and snacks for the ascent
  • sunscreen
  • first aid kit

Our tip: If you want to pack light, consider renting a sledge on-site – and don’t forget the helmets!

Assess the length of the hike

Tip #2

When the starting point of your sledging run isn’t accessible by cable car, you’ll need to cover the distance on foot. This may not be the most enjoyable part of the excursion for your little ones. Here are some ways to make the hike more pleasant for them:

  • Choose shorter routes: Ensure that the length and incline of the hike are suitable for young hikers. Remember that children walk at a slower pace and take frequent breaks to explore their surroundings. You might also want to schedule extra time for a family snowball fight!
  • Pull the toddler on the sledge: Give your little ones a short break by attaching a seat to the sledge and pulling them along for part of the hike.
  • Offer incentives: Reward your child with a treat (for instance, a traditional yeast dumpling) for reaching the summit or a chocolate bar halfway through the hike. A little incentive can make hiking much more enjoyable for kids.

A mindful ascent

Tip #3


When the hiking route doubles as the sledging run, extra caution is required when you are bringing children with you. Make sure to always use the right-hand side for the ascent and that everyone walks in single file. When crossing the route, you should do so only at safe locations with good visibility.

A controlled descent

Tip #4

Whether you’re sledging with children or without them, it’s crucial to stay in control of your sledge at all times during the descent. Make sure you ride in a controlled manner, on sight and keeping a safe distance from others. Choose a riding style and speed that matches your skill level and experience. Important as well: Pay close attention to the snow and weather conditions and adapt your riding style accordingly.

Are you sledging with a group? Only stop at safe locations with good visibility to take a break or wait for your companions.

Have fun!

Tip #5

Sledging with children can be a wonderful experience as long as you keep these important points in mind. By following these guidelines, you can ensure a safe and exciting sledging adventure for everyone involved.


Family-friendly sledging runs in Austria

Austria, as a winter sports destination, offers a variety of sledging runs that are perfect for a family outing. Here are some options:

  • Carinthia: The Guggendorf sledging run in Hermagor, Nassfeld region, offers an action-packed two-kilometre descent after a 30-minute hike.
  • Upper Austria: A child-friendly natural sledging run is waiting for you at Berggasthof Zottensberg. This 300-metre run is open during the day and floodlit at night.
  • Lower Austria: The three-kilometre adventure sledging run at Semmering makes for an exciting experience. Younger snow enthusiasts can head to the Panhans sledging run at the Happylift.
  • Salzburg: Salzburger Sportwelt boasts 17 sledging runs, with the Hahnbaum run being a child-friendly option.
  • Styria: The sledging run on Stuhleck is perfect for children and accessible by cable car. Watch out for Semmi and his friends during your descent.
  • Tyrol: The Pinnisalm sledging run in the Stubai Valley offers a rapid descent after a one-hour hike with a slight elevation gain of 180 metres.
  • Vorarlberg: The two-kilometre sledging run on Sonnkopf promises fun and entertainment for the whole family, followed by a pleasant refreshment stop at Bündthütte.


On your sledge, get set – go!

Once you’ve packed your essentials and selected a suitable destination, it’s time for you to head out on your sledging adventure. If you’re frequently going on family trips, you’re likely familiar with the challenge of fitting all the equipment into the boot of your car.

Why not make it easy for a change and rent your sledges on site? Many sledging runs also offer rental services – and if not, there’s most likely an INTERSPORT Rent shop somewhere nearby!

Find a shop near you!

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