Most exciting winter adventures in Columbus


Who says life has to stop during winter? Winter brings with it a whole new set of adventures you can't do in summer.

I know what you're thinking, what is there to do in flat Columbus, Ohio during winter? What could you possibly do for an adventure when it's cold and snowy, besides try to not slip on ice?

Well my friends, prepare to be surprised.

Plunge Into The Cold
High angle view of a young woman swimming in a hole cut in the iceLauri Rotko/Folio Images via Getty Images

Nothing is more heart racing and adrenaline pumping than jumping into freezing water. Only true adventurers partake in the Special Olympics Polar Plunge events. And lucky for us, Ohio (including some in the Columbus region) is littered with scheduled plunges. Your hair may become thin icicles and your lips may turn blue, but it's all for a good cause! Check out the schedule on their website for dates and locations, if you're brave enough that is.

Explore Winter on Cross-Country Skis
Explore the majesty of winter atop skis on the many cross-country ski trails in the Columbus Metro Park system. Glide your way through forests with snow-laden trees and white meadows that glisten in the sunlight. You can cross-country ski on any trail, in any metro park, when ski conditions exist, so your options are plentiful!

Speed Downhill on Skis or a Snowboard
Embrace your inner Shaun White and take a short trip out to one of the ski resorts that surround Columbus. Whether you are a beginner, or can perform crazy aerobatic jumps like an Olympian, there's a hill for you. For my daredevil friends, Mad River Mountain boasts the highest ski hill in Ohio. Another great option is Snow Trails Ski Resort up in Mansfield.

Sledding Is For All Ages
Family sledging.skynesher via Getty Images

One of a child's favorite winter activities is sledding, but who says sledding has to stop when you're an adult? When snow blankets the ground in Columbus, go to one of the city's metro parks sledding hills and show those kids what a real sledder looks like! To get the most speed on your sled, Highbanks Metro Park is your place, as the home of the steepest and fastest sledding hill in Central Ohio.

Ice Fishing-Embrace Your Inner Eskimo
Anyone who says fishing isn't exciting is bitter because they've never caught a fish. The second you feel a small tug on your fishing line, adrenaline shoots through your veins, trying to keep up with your racing heart. Now add sitting on top of ice to that thrill. Buckeye Lake is a man-made lake just outside Columbus, which means it's shallow, which means it freezes every winter and creates the perfect ice fishing spot. Before you go, make sure you have a fishing license!

Hiking in a Winter Wonderland
It may be cold, but snow and ice have a way of making the world look beautiful in a way that only winter can. Take advantage of the season by going on a winter hike. Trust me, you won't regret it. My recommendations for optimum winter wonderland-ry in Columbus are Alum Creek State Park and Clear Creek Metro Park. But the absolute best, must-do winter hike is down in Hocking Hills State Park. Weave through the trails to Old Man's Cave and see waterfalls that have transformed into huge icicles.

Hurry! Before all the snow melts!

Rachel Fuhrman was born and raised in Columbus, Ohio. She loves finding new adventures in her hometown. When she's not exploring, she's either reading, writing her novel, or playing with her dog. Follow her HERE!