Skiing and snowboarding in New York
Get excited, shredders and ski bums: There are powder and slopes aplenty for skiing and snowboarding, just a short distance away
Wed Jan 29 2014
Photograph: courtesy Killington Resort
You don’t have to travel hundreds of miles for skiing and snowboarding this winter. Plan a winter getaway with a weekend trip or day trip to a plethora of gorgeous ski resorts right here in New York State. Snag any last-minute gear at one of New York City’s best winter-sports stores before hitting the slopes.
RECOMMENDED: Winter getaways from NYC
Photograph: Courtesy Susie Kalgren/Mountain Creek
Closest to NYC
1½ hours by car or bus
Looking for a quick trip? It’s only 47 miles to Vernon, New Jersey, where 44 trails fan out across 167 acres. Of those, 12 belong to Mountain Creek’s terrain park, which is packed with features such as street-style rails and boxes. Adrenaline junkies will appreciate the two-hour guided zip-line tour ($59.99), which dangles guests as high as 150 feet off the ground. When you’re ready to unwind, sip a cup of cocoa (spiked or otherwise) at one of the resort’s seven drinking and dining establishments, or find your Zen place at one of two on-site spas. 200 Rte 94, Vernon, NJ (973-827-2000, mountaincreek.com). Full-day lift ticket $41.99–$65.99. Half-day $37.99–$51.99. Equipment rental $44.95. 90min group lesson $39.99/person.
Where to stay: Head to the Alpine Haus (217 Rte 94, Vernon, NJ; 973-209-7080, alpinehausbb.com; $110–$245/night), a 129-year-old Federal-style bed-and-breakfast located right next door.
Getting there: NJ Transit (973-275-5555, njtransit.com; Sat, Sun) offers round-trip weekend service from Port Authority to Mountain Creek for $25.50. Plus, you’ll save an additional $6–$10 off your lift ticket when you present your train stub at the gate.
Photograph: Wedding Photography/AWFOTOS.com
2½ hours by car or bus
This state-run resort in the Catskills is both wallet-friendly and less crowded than others nearby. It delivers the goods, with 50 trails (more than half dedicated to intermediate skiers), a terrain park, and two progression parks outfitted with jumps, boxes and rails. You can also strap on a pair of cross-country skis or snowshoes (BYO equipment) and light out over six miles of backwoods paths. Belleayre Mountain Rd, Pine Hill, NY (845-254-5600, belleayre.com). Full-day lift ticket $48–$60. Half-day $42–$50. Equipment rental $45. One-hour group lesson $30/person.
Where to stay: The throwback Delaware Court Motel (1141 Main St, Fleischmanns, NY; 845-254-5090, delawaremotelcatskills.com; $65–$200/night) offers cottages and rooms with kitchens.
Getting there: Adirondack Trailways (800-858-8555, trailwaysny.com) offers $93 round-trip service from Port Authority to Belleayre, which includes the price of a lift ticket.
Photograph: Courtesy Catamount
Best for beginners
Catamount Ski Area
2½ hours by car or 4 hours by bus
New-to-the-game skiers and boarders will appreciate this Berkshires resort, where 11 of the 33 trails are tailored to the less experienced. It also features the area’s longest run (two miles). And because it straddles the line between New York and Massachusetts, you can brag that you’ve skied across two states. Shredders have their pick of three terrain parks, with jibs and jumps tailored to varying skill levels. 3290 State Hwy 23, Hillsdale, NY (518-325-3200, catamountski.com). Lift ticket $30–$62. Equipment rental $36–$45. 90min group lesson $40/person. Learn to ski/snowboard package $49–$79.
Where to stay: The Holiday House Motel (2871 Rte 23, Hillsdale, NY; 518-325-3030, holidayhousemotel.com; $75–$95/night), which abuts a bubbling brook, is nearby and budget-friendly.
Getting there: If you don’t want to rent a car, take a Peter Pan bus (888-751-8800, peterpanbus.com; round-trip $85) out of Port Authority to Great Barrington, Massachusetts, and grab a cab to Hillsdale, a 20-minute drive away.
Photograph: Dave Rainbird
3 hours by car
You’ll feel on top of the world—literally—at this spot in the western Catskills, which boasts a base elevation of 2,400 feet. Guests can take their pick from long or steep slopes: Among the most popular of the 38 trails are the Powder Puff, a gently elevated, two-mile-long cruiser ideal for beginners, and the double-black-diamond Blockbuster, where you can slide down 1,100 feet of continuous vertical drop. 469 Plattekill Mountain Rd, Roxbury, NY (607-326-3500, plattekill.com). Lift tickets: full day $38–$58, half day $49. Equipment rental: full day $32, half day $25. 90min group lesson $35/person.
Where to stay: The Andes Hotel (110 Main St, Andes, NY; 845-676-3980, andeshotel.com; $85–$165/night), has ten rooms and maintains a cozy restaurant and tavern on the ground floor.
Photograph: Courtesy Camelback Mountain
Best for adventurers
Camelback Mountain Resort
1½ hours by car or bus
The easily distractible will be jazzed by the variety of activities at this Poconos resort.
In addition to its 34 trails—all of which are lit for nighttime adventures, and more than half of which are considered challenging—Camelback features two terrain parks. The spot is also home to the country’s biggest snow-tubing area and Pennsylvania’s only Mountain Coaster, a 4,500-foot-long hybrid of a roller coaster and an alpine slide. 301 Resort Dr, Tannersville, PA (570-629-1661, skicamelback.com). Full-day lift ticket $51–$63. Half-day $37. Equipment rental $37. Group lesson $35/person.
Where to stay: Go old-school at the nearby Howard Johnson (63 Rte 11, Bartonsville, PA; 570-424-6100, hojo.com; $79–$189/night), which has an on-site restaurant, bar and pool.
Getting there: OvRride (347-559-1787, ovrride.com; $49.95–$144.95) offers day trips to Camelback that include round-trip bus transport from several locations in Manhattan and Brooklyn; free beer on the return trip; and the option to add lift tickets, lessons and/or equipment rental.
Photograph: Courtesy Killington Resort
Best weekend getaway
5½ hours by bus or 4½ hours by car
Bigger is better in Killington, Vermont, the site of the East Coast’s largest ski resort—we’re talking seven mountains. Those making the trek will be rewarded with a dizzying choice of 155 trails, spread over 1,509 skiable acres. Though there are plenty of slopes for casual skiers, including a number of three- to four-mile cruisers, hotdoggers will gravitate toward the 69 black-diamond runs (24 of which are double black) and five terrain parks—including the Stash, a snowboarding setup with 65 features inspired by the surrounding landscape, including log rides and cliff jumps. 4763 Killington Rd, Killington, VT (802-422-6201, killington.com). Lift ticket: $74–$89. Equipment rental $44/day. Group lesson $59/person.
Where to stay: The Hillside Inn (375 Killington Rd, Killington, VT; 802-315-0039, hillsideinnkillington.com; $80–$199/night) fills up guests with a complimentary Continental breakfast before they hit the slopes, which are just three miles up the road.
Getting there: Adventure Northeast (917-861-1800, adventurenortheast.com; round-trip $185), offers daily bus service from the Upper West Side.
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