Snowboarding in Scotland is possible in a number of places. On a recent holiday to Scotland (an epic roadtrip I might add), I was lucky enough to get an afternoons boarding in at one of Scotland’s six main snow resorts. Granted it was quite what I was used to in terms of ski resorts (not that I have extensive experience), but if you need a quick fix whilst in the United Kingdom at a low cost, you could do far worse than spend a day in the Glencoe mountain range.

Glencoe

The village of Glencoe itself is pretty small, but with a certain charm.  From the hub of the village its main road winds off into a valley are valley of glorious towering mountains.  The roads weave and curve their way through the landscape, its an epic drive.  Despite being a small area there is plenty to do around these parts.  Most of the activities concern the mountain, but there are activities to fit all abilities.  For those with a high adrenalin threshold mountain biking, white water rafting or canyoning may take you fancy.  If that’s too daring how about a segway tour or some kayaking?  If that still seems too much there is also archery, golf, or simply taking a walk on one of the many nature trails through the mountains.

Located on the shores of Loch Leven, Glencoe sits almost halfway between Fort William and Oban, and again there cant be too much between the nearest airport, either Inverness or Glasgow.

Snowboarding in Scotland … Glencoe to be more precise

So to the snowboarding.  I’m not going to lie, I found it fairly tough going at Glencoe, but enjoyable all the same.  A sudden drop in temp had caused a lot of ice to form on the slopes upon my visit.  Snowboards and ice are not friends, and neither am I and one person ski lifts.  Having paid to hire some boots and a board, and then for the initial lift up to the slopes (which was amazing), I left my friends with some sledges and joined the queue for the first lift up the slopes.  I stuck the pole in between my legs, waited to the buzzer to signal its release and no sooner had I heard said buzzer I was on my ass … much to the amusement of my mates and the staff operating the lifts.  That would not be the last time I fell over that day, but luckily my second attempt at the lift was a little more graceful and a lot more successful.

The facilities at Glencoe are not 1st rate, but they get the job done.  The resort is pleasantly charming if not spectacular.  After finally making my way up lift number 1, old wooden chair lifts further up the mountain lead to small log cabins where a couple of people can gather around a small table and have a drink.  The runs themselves are outlined with small wooden fences.  I didn’t like falling on my face lots, but I quite liked the ye olde feel of the resort.  That’s not to say money hasn’t been spent here in a while, it has.  Newer T-bar lifts help you get to the very top runs … another type of lift I failed miserably to grasp at the first attempt.  Also the board hire shop and cafe at the very bottom of the mountain and seen so investment and are very comfortable.

I spent the afternoon on a few blue runs, but with the ice they felt more like red.  Luckily the slopes were fairly quiet so I could topple over in relative peace and without fear of taking others with me.  On occasions where my board did touch snow it was beautiful.  Weaving between patches of grass and mounds of rocks was new to me also, but in a way it was a nice challenge.  Despite feeling capable of more I actually found myself spending most of my time on the green runs towards the end of the day as they had the most snow.

My day in pictures

glencoe boat club

We start off at our cottage located opposite the Glencoe Boat Club.  We hop in the car and wind our way through the dramatic dipping valleys of Glencoe.

glencoe

Ski Glencoe

Once we have arrived at the ski resort base some 20 minutes later.  We buy our lift passes and I hire my snowboarding gear, and then we hop on the lift to take us to the first snow station.  From there I take further ski lifts to the top whilst the others go sledging on the lower slopes.

Ski Scotland

Snowboard Glencoe

snowboard Scotland

After a couple of hours of boarding and falling on my ass I get the lift back down at meet my friends who are already in the cafe warming up with mulled cider.

glencoe ski resort

Video of snowboarding in Scotland

Cost

The cost of snowboarding in Scotland?  Something like this …

  • Half day (12pm – 4pm) lift pass for ski/boarder – £20
  • Half day lift pass for sledger – £10
  • Half day boot and board rental – £20
  • Sledge hire – FREE

 

Other places to snowboard in Scotland

  • Nevis Range
  • Glenshee
  • Cairngorm
  • The lecht

 

Useful resources

These aren’t paid links for anything like that, they’re just good ole resources if you’re interested in skiing/snowboarding in Scotland.