• Fresh Tracks: Great Places To Ski Near NYC

    You don’t have to travel far for a sweet family ski trip

    By Danielle Kraese
    Killington Resort
    Killington Resort

    In below-freezing temperatures, it’s tempting to crawl under the warmth of your covers and hide out until spring. But we encourage you to embrace the cold with a weekend excursion to one of the Northeast’s top ski resorts, where you can take in the fresh mountain air, gorgeous summit views that stretch for miles, and the kind of quiet serenity that just can’t be found in a big city. With plenty of locations geared toward little ones—one just a mere 47 miles from New York City—there’s a suitable adventure for every family.

    IN 2 HOURS OR LESS

    Camelback Mountain (Tannersville, PA)
    Situated in the Poconos, Camelback has it all: 34 sprawling trails (all lighted for night skiing), kids’ and adult lesson packages, diverse dining choices, and lodging to fit every budget. An especially unique draw is the Neon Terrain Park, a snowboarding haven that features custom murals painted by professional graffiti artists. At the end of a rigorous day on the slopes, the grownups can retire to the Thirsty Camel or the Glen Lodge Smoke House to unwind with some live music. About 1.5 hours from NYC, skicamelback.com

    Mountain Creek (Vernon, NJ)

    An excursion to Mountain Creek is a quick and painless journey from the city, clocking in at just 47 miles from the George Washington Bridge. At Mountain Creek, you’ll find that the offerings go way beyond exhilarating trails, with top-notch learning programs for skiers and boarders—not to mention zipline tours and an Alpine Mountain Coaster, a cross between an alpine slide and a rollercoaster. Best of all: The mountain stays open late, so the fun doesn’t have to end once the sun goes down!  About 1.5 hours from NYC, mountaincreek.com

    Thunder Ridge Ski Resort (Patterson, NY)
    This snowy escape is a short 75-minute drive from New York City, close enough to ensure that cranky complaints and requests for bathroom stops will be kept to minimum. Thunder Ridge boasts 30 different trails with three chairlifts and four kid-friendly magic carpet lifts, making it suitable for skiers and boarders of every age and skill level. For an alternative to driving, you can take the Metro-North Ski Train to the Patterson station and enjoy free shuttle service right to the resort. About 1.5 hours from NYC,thunderridgeski.com

    Blue Mountain (Palmerton, PA)
    Stationed within the gorgeous Little Gap Valley, Blue Mountain offers 39 trails, 6 terrain parks, up to 22 tubing lanes, plus an incredible view of the Pocono Mountains. Head here for Pennsylvania’s highest vertical drop and a variety of terrain to suit every skill level. When dinnertime rolls around, stay near the slope with one of many on-site restaurants, or venture out into town for a memorable meal! About 2 hours from NYC, skibluemt.com

    IN 3 HOURS OR LESS

    Belleayre Mountain (Highmount, NY)
    This popular snow haven has 50 different trails for skiers and snowboarders of all abilities, including mogul trails ranging from intermediate to expert and fives glades for the adventurous. The resort came from modest beginnings, but over the last 20 years it has grown to attract thousands of winter sport enthusiasts each season. For little ones who are still learning, the Kidscamp caters to ages 4-12 for skiing and  snowboarding. About 2.5 hours from NYC, belleayre.com

    Hunter Mountain (Hunter, NY)
    Tucked away in the Catskills, Hunter is the perfect destination for novice skiers. The vast mountain is nationally recognized as a prime resort for those who are learning to ski. Hunter One, an independent training mountain featuring user-friendly lifts and varied terrain, allows beginners to gradually build skills and gain confidence. After a grueling day on the slopes, parents can kick back and give those muscles a break at the resort’s luxury spa center while the kids enjoy waffles made fresh-to-order with their choice of topping.  About 2.5 hours from NYC, huntermtn.com

    Windham Mountain (Windham, NY)
    Windham offers the most skiing and snowboarding within 200 miles of New York City, with roughly 1,600 vertical feet of trails. In addition to the slopes, the resort has an assortment of great restaurant options, including an outdoor barbecue and bar. If you enjoy the royal treatment, become a member of the 3500 Club for access to a private locker room that boasts its own restrooms, boot dryers, big screen televisions, an exclusive slopeside entrance, and oversized lockers for conveniently storing your family’s equipment.  About 2.5 hours from NYC, windhammountain.com

    Jiminy Peak (Hancock, MA)
    The largest ski resort in southern New England, Jiminy Peak is the only mountain-based resort in North America that uses alternative wind power to create its own energy. The mountain is carved with 45 trails, nearly half of which remain lit at night to allow for skiing beneath the stars. For beginners or those who have yet to master the slopes, learning programs are available for adults and children as young as 3. About 3 hours from NYC, jiminypeak.com

    IN 5 HOURS OR LESS

    Wachusett Mountain (Princeton, MA)

    Wachusett Mountain (Princeton, MA)
    With panoramic views of the Boston skyline from its peak, this Massachusetts mountain provides equal amounts novice and advanced terrain, as well as night-skiing. Enjoy live music and entertainment après ski in the Coppertop Lounge every weekend. About 3.5 hours from NYC, wachusett.com

    Stratton Mountain (Stratton Mountain, VT)
    Breathe in the brisk Vermont air while exploring Stratton’s 97 different trails, ranging from the meandering and scenic to the steep and adrenaline-pumping. The mountain operates 11 lifts and one high-speed gondola to transport you to the top, as well as a magic carpet lift for those who prefer not to stray from the bunny slopes. After the last run of the day, retire to the cozy, rustic lodge or venture into the quaint village at the mountain’s base for an evening of shopping and dining. About 4 hours from NYC, stratton.com

    Killington Resort (Killington, VT)
    Located in the heart of Vermont, Killington offers 155 trails spread across seven different mountain peaks with ample lifts to get you where you need to be. While the mountain may hold the record for the greatest vertical drop in the New England region (3,050 feet), the excitement doesn’t end once you kick off your skis. Off-mountain attractions include a tubing park, sleigh rides, snowmobile tours, snowshoeing, spa treatments, live bands, festivals, and more than 100 restaurant and bars to explore in the region—certainly enough to make the drive worth your time! About 4.5 hours from NYC, killington.com

    Okemo Mountain Resort (Ludlow, VT)
    Find 121 thrill-inducing trails woven throughout Okemo Mountain. Rated a Top US Family Snow Resort by Parents Magazine, the resort offers a range of lesson programs to ensure your little one will be gliding down the slopes with confidence in no time. If you’re feeling adventurous, test your skills at one of eight terrain parks. With challenges like rails, jumps, and pumps, these parks range in difficulty from beginner-friendly to daredevils-only. When night falls, take a tour of the mountain with a tranquil Snowcat Ride. About 4.5 hours from NYC, okemo.com

    Whiteface Mountain (Wilmington, NY)
    As the two-time home of the Olympic Winter Games, Whiteface Mountain at Lake Placid has trails and activities for advanced athletes and beginners alike. With 87 trails and the greatest vertical drop in the east at 3430 feet, Whiteface is sure to thrill.   Beyond the trails, Whiteface offers bobsled rides, an Olympic museum, live music, and restaurants and boutiques for every budget. After a long day on the slopes, parents can head to the spa while the kids catch a movie. About 5 hours from NYC, whiteface.com

    Waterville Valley Resort (Waterville Valley, NH)
    Nestled in the vast expanse of the White Mountain National Forest, the trails comprising Waterville Valley Resort suit every level of skier, from the slow learner to the speed demon. The resort’s Adaptive Snowsports program offers children and adults with physical and mental challenges the chance to experience the mountain with the assistance of dedicated volunteers. After the lifts have been put to rest for the day, you’ll find another way to traverse the snowy terrain with a Twilight Dogsled Excursion, in which a team of friendly sled dogs will lead riders through the breathtaking valley. About 5.5 hours from NYC, waterville.com

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