Which toboggan sleds are best?
After the first snow of the season, a few activities might immediately spring to mind: snowball fights, snowman-building and, depending on your terrain, sledding. Any time snow collects on a hill, children haul out their sleds and toboggans to see who can get down the slope the fastest.
Toboggans may be simple toys, but you can get a little extra speed and control by tweaking a few design elements. For an affordable toboggan with handles and a tow rope, the Slippery Racer Downhill Toboggan Snow Sled is tough to beat.
What to know before you buy a toboggan sled
Toboggans vs. sleds
Sleds can appear in a variety of different forms, from inflatable snow tubes to steerable models that resemble traditional bobsleds. A toboggan is a type of sled with a flat bottom and raised sides. The rider controls the direction of the toboggan by shifting their body weight from one side to the other. These sleds are usually shaped like a bullet and often come with handles built into the sides for extra control. Toboggans can usually reach relatively fast speeds and are often big enough to hold multiple riders.
Modern toboggans are typically crafted from durable plastic or some kind of synthetic material that can withstand impacts against packed snow or the occasional rocky patch. You can also find toboggans that are constructed from wood, but these are often more decorative than practical for sledding. If you do happen to find a wooden model that’s designed for use on the slopes, be sure to regularly treat it with some kind of waterproof sealant to keep it in proper working condition.
According to the Mayo Clinic, 25,000 children are sent to the emergency room every year due to sled-related injuries, many of which could be avoided by following some of these simple safety tips.
- Always wear warm clothes when engaging in a winter activity, but avoid scarves or any loose garments that could get caught on surrounding objects when going downhill.
- Kids should always wear helmets when riding on a toboggan. If you don’t have a helmet for skiing or snowboarding, consider a snug-fitting bicycle helmet.
- Don’t sled down any hill that has obstructions like a road or trees at the bottom.
- Children under 5 years old should not ride a toboggan without an accompanying adult.
- Don’t ride a toboggan on your stomach, facing backward or standing. Face forward with your arms and legs inside the sled at all times.
What to look for in a quality toboggan sled
Unlike most sled types, toboggans are often big enough to hold more than one person at a time. If you’re interested in riding with a friend, make sure you choose a toboggan that’s at least 5 feet long and specially designed for multiple riders.
A heavy toboggan may go fast, but it will also be more difficult to haul back up the hill if you want to ride again. It could also sink if the snow is fluffy enough. Look for a model that balances lightweight construction with a solid build. Four to 10 pounds is usually the sweet spot.
Look for a toboggan with handles built into the sides. This feature will give you a little extra steering power when going downhill.
Most toboggans also feature a tow rope attached to the front of the sled. This rope can be used to pull the sled uphill after you finish a run, and it can also be held when you’re going down so you don’t get separated from your sled if a mild crash occurs.
How much you can expect to spend on a toboggan sled
The cost of a toboggan sled will usually depend on its construction. Most durable plastic toboggans will cost around $30 to $70, while most wooden models are at least $100.
Toboggan sled FAQ
Are toboggans faster than other types of sleds?
A. Toboggans are usually faster than tubes and other sleds because of their aerodynamic shape and flat bottom.
Do toboggan sleds have weight limits?
A. Yes, you can usually find the weight limit of a toboggan listed with its product details. Adults shouldn’t use sleds designed for kids because they could break or result in an injury on the slope.
What are the best toboggan sleds to buy?
Top toboggan sled
What you need to know: This popular snow sled is simple, solidly built and big enough for two young riders.
What you’ll love: This toboggan is available in three colors and constructed from durable, slick-coated plastic for extra speed. The company uses a proprietary weather-resistant coating to protect against particularly cold conditions.
What you should consider: At 4 feet long, this toboggan may not be big enough to handle adult riders.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Top toboggan sled for the money
What you need to know: This purchase comes with two plastic toboggans for the price of one.
What you’ll love: You can buy the two-pack in blue or red and green. The colorful toboggans feature a durable tow rope for dragging the sleds and built-in handles for added steering control.
What you should consider: The sleds are less than 3 feet long, and a few users questioned their durability.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Toboggan sled worth checking out
What you need to know: This long toboggan sled features a classic design and is constructed from northern hard maple.
What you’ll love: The sled is 6 feet long, which is enough to handle three adult riders. It comes fully assembled with an integrated tow rope.
What you should consider: This wooden toboggan is considerably more expensive than other models.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
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Patrick Farmer writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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