2 hours away
Open to season pass holders late November, others welcome starting early December, tickets must be purchased in advance
This Catskills ski area offers Friday and Saturday night-skiing until 9pm on eight of its 49 trails, ensuring that you'll spend less time traveling to the mountain and more time on it. While terrain ranges from 12 novice-appropriate trails to seven satisfyingly steep double-black runs, nearly half the runs are rated intermediate, making the mountain a great place for those who know what they're doing but want to avoid frequent face-plants. The mountain also offers ice skating, snowboarding, tubing, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing and more. Mon–Fri 9am–4pm; Sat & Sun 8am–4pm. Lift tickets: Starting at $65 per day. Equipment rental: starting at $65. 105-minute group lesson $99-325.
There are several bus packages available through Windham (windhammountain.com/groups-weddings/tour-operators), including Urban Sherpa Travel, which picks up both in downtown and uptown Manhattan.
Where to stay:
Save: Rooms at the budget-friendly Cave Mountain Motel (10978 Rte 23, Windham, NY; 518-734-3161, cavemountainmotel.com; $129-$149 per night for two) have a lived-in, country-cabin appeal. A basic complimentary Continental breakfast served each morning by the kitchen's wood-burning stove (and the fact that the motel is just one-and-a-half miles from the mountain) only sweetens the deal.
Splurge: Choose between standard hotel rooms and one- to two-bedroom condos at the Winwood Inn (5220 Rte 23, Windham, NY; 518-734-3000, windhammountain.com; $129–$629 per night) and you'll get access to the free mountain shuttle, not to mention a rec room stocked with throwback video games and a foosball table.