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Carts, Trays, & Baskets: The Best Items For On-Campus Sledding

One college’s time-honored traditions is the impromptu sledding that occurs whenever it snows. However, notoriously-broke Penn Staters often have to scramble to find something that’ll effectively get down the hill.

With no classes on Monday, I got to try out some DIY sled options, and you can bet we’ve got some thoughts on which are the best. Let’s examine some of the best options you can use for sledding down at Dear Old State.


This should be the obvious choice, right? Often the easiest solution is not the best. While sleds fit their purpose, they may end up setting you back a few dollars. Also, there’s something endearing about the thrill of pulling something together day-of. That said, there’s no denying the effectiveness of a good sled.


Whether it’s a well-maintained cardboard box or a flattened piece of the thin stuff from last weekend, it’s never too difficult to get your hands on some cardboard. This is the neutral option for sledding. It’s nothing wild, but it’s easy to find and should get you down the hill.

HUB Dining Tray

It’s a classic! When it comes to college-campus sledding, there’s no denying the icon that is the cafeteria tray. Personally, while it felt nostalgic to be using this classic form of snow transportation, it was a little slow for my liking and didn’t build up as much speed as I would’ve hoped for.

Trash Can Lid

This was the biggest disappointment of the day. I gave it a couple of runs, but despite its bowl-like shape, the trash can lid struggled to build any speed.

Half Of A Folding Table [Sitting]

Now, I’m not gonna pretend like I know how half of a folding table made it to the top of HUB Lawn today, but this was a strong competitor for best impromptu sled. I gave it a couple of runs in the sitting position and saw some decent speed.

Half Of A Folding Table [Standing]

Now, this is a real specimen. The speed, the steering, the dominant stance — this was a truly impressive steed. I wouldn’t call it the best of the best, but it was a surprising addition to the lineup that impressed me.

Laundry Basket

Someone is gonna have a hard time doing laundry this week because this was not my basket. Regardless, this was an interesting ride. It was difficult to position myself and had a severe lack of control that led to a crash, but the speed was one of the best ones of the day. If only there was a slightly larger bin-shaped object to ride in…

East Halls Move-In Cart

How did a cart from East get to the HUB? I’m not sure, but I’m not complaining because this is the holy grail of sledding objects. It’s fast, it’s exhilarating, and it tosses you out on the snow at the end. Yes, you heard that right. Even crashing in this thing was fun. The bucket was the perfect shape for me to get positioned in and the speed was unmatched. Just look at the joy on my face. Priceless.

Honorable Mention: Spin Bikes

While I didn’t get to try them myself, I did hear that some of the 1 a.m. crowd was using Spin Bikes as a sled, and honestly, I couldn’t be more disappointed that I missed it. Keep pedaling, Nittany Lions.

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About the Author

Mikey DeAngelis

Mikey DeAngelis is a junior majoring in film production who is also serving as one of Onward State's visual editors. During his free time, he enjoys making content for his YouTube channel. Mikey loves Philly sports, traveling and hiking in National Parks, and watching movies. To reach Mikey, feel free to reach out on Twitter (@mikey_deangelis) or by email ([email protected]).

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