A DATE LUGING IN MUSKEGON!
You'll be seeing me in the next Olympics. (not really...)
However, Josh and I recently got to experience what it's like to luge in Muskegon! You know, that sport they race down an icy track on a sled going so fast it kind of makes you sick to watch. Yup, that's the one.
It took me long enough to get there, especially since the track is pretty famous here in Michigan. Every time people from the state found out that I loved adventure, they would ask about the luge and I would shamefully admit that I had yet to experience it. I think they would question if I was a true Michigander...
So I finally headed over the explore Muskegon Winter Sports Complex. Besides getting my senior pictures taken there a few years ago, I have to admit I didn't know much about the area. It was one of the most pleasant surprises I've had in a long time.
Muskegon Winter Sports Complex is one of the biggest attractions in the Muskegon Area. It offers one of the only four luge tracks open to the public in the United States. People who come and try can reach speeds between 30-35mph while flying down the path. It was also home to the only (until recently) quarter-mile ice skating track through a forest.
If you're looking for an experience that is unique, adventurous and fun, this is the spot to go.
We got to the luge track bright and early at 8:00am and thankfully it was a warmer morning than usual (a whopping 15 degrees). But the track was in perfect condition and we were the first ones to tear it up that morning. Of course, there were a million questions going through my mind.
"Am I going to die?"
"Am I going to lose a limb?"
"How do you steer this thing?"
But my nerves settled a bit after the information session of no you aren't going to die, here's your helmet, you'd really have to f-up to lose a limb and this is how you don't crash.
Okay...I can do this. I can totally do this.
They also explained that it is nearly impossible to not hit a track wall on your first time. Which I was fine with because I'm pretty sure I run into a few of those a day while walking. Welcome to my life.
So we carried our sleds to the top and I went first. As soon as left the gate I completely forgot everything I was told and smashed the walls about 5 times. Hitting the walls don't hurt, thank goodness, and the entire thing is quite the rush. I jumped up at the bottom and had an internal "Heck yeah!" moment even though I knew I completely failed at every technique possible. They also time your runs, I had completed it in 22 seconds...I could do better.
I went about 5 more times and had a record time of 18 seconds. So much fun. I couldn't stop smiling on the rides down...even when I hit a wall.
My biggest surprise of Muskegon (other than luging) was their downtown. I had never been down there and I had no idea it had so much to offer. The night before luging, we stayed downtown at the Holiday Inn and I couldn't believe how busy the streets were. In the cold. In the dead of winter. No one seemed to care.
I like your style, Muskegon.
I hate when I go to a place in the winter that is like a ghost town. Everyone is cooped up inside waiting for spring. But I LOVE when I go to a place that embraces winter and acts like it's just another day in paradise. Muskegon knocks that out of the park.
Have you ever tried luging in Muskegon? Did you have fun? What other areas should I explore soon?
This was a sponsored trip by Visit Muskegon. All accommodation and activities were paid by the hosted company. All opinions are my own based on my experience.
Soulful adventurer. Probably lost. Definitely eating ice cream.
In her late-teens, Shalee drove out of her small hometown watching the sunset behind her along the two-lane highway. Her ventures began in Michigan, where she taught herself to travel on a budget. Today, Shalee shares her tips and stories to thousands of readers interested in adventure, budget, and outdoor travel. Learn more about her here.