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Top 5 choices for family skiing

post #1 of 34
Thread Starter 
Starting to make our list of places to go to this year. We usually ski as a family...dad (me, age 40) and two kids, 9 and 11. We enjoy the typical blue trails...nothing crazy, just looking for fun. Any other suggestions? Looking for new places to go.

'Been to Mountain Creek...lets just say we wont go back...not a family oriented place.

typical places for us are (in order of closeness):
1. Thunder Ridge (a hill basically, but good for the kids to go night skiing fridays after school)
2. Belleayre
3. Catamount
4. Butternut
5. Jiminy Peak
post #2 of 34
First of all Smugglers which consistantly gets high marks for a family resort...IS AWFUL! I pulled my son out of class there because they cater with the weekest link in the chain.

For a family resort.. I like Okemo. The kids can go off alone and aren't going to get themselves into trouble. The glade, which kids love, are a blast. The bumps are made made and perfect and for mom and dad there is some nice cruiser.
post #3 of 34
Don't know if I can come up with 5 but my kids love Targhee.
post #4 of 34
Are you talkin': Day trip/ Weekend/Holiday week/etc?
post #5 of 34
Thread Starter 
Either day trip or overnighter, ideally within 3 to 3 1/2 hrs NYC
post #6 of 34
Okemo and Ascutney are good VT choices.

Even better NY choices - lower key and surpisingly kid-friendly: Gore and Whiteface. Both look a little further on the map but fast drives. Gore's my top pick. Lots of blue cruisers; interesting layout; easy parking and lodge. Both Gore and Whiteface are much lower key and less crowded than VT places.
post #7 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott K
Either day trip or overnighter, ideally within 3 to 3 1/2 hrs NYC
Below is a list that a family of 'Blue Terrain skiers within 3.5 hours of NYC' should enjoy:

Bellearye
Windham
Bromley
Gore

NON Weekend:
Okemo (stretching your drive time..but not by much)
Stratton (Same as above)
post #8 of 34
Whiteface can be too darn cold. Not the most "friendly" of places. Mt. Snow is a good choice being a southern exposure, warmer.
post #9 of 34
I'd second the recommendations of Gore and Windham as other places to go that shouldn't be too bad a drive for you. Gore is bigger and more impressive than anything else in New York other than Whiteface...

-Craig
post #10 of 34
Mid-week, Mt. Snow is surprisingly good. I avoided skiing there for 40+ years until I went over on a Monday last March. I never stood in a lift line and I skied every area on the mountain - I'm pretty sure I rode every lift that day. I'm kind of sorry I never went before. Lots of wide open cruisers, steep and narrow over on the North Face and it was warm. You should be able to make it in 3.5 hours.
post #11 of 34
Gore & West mtn in tandem for a localized overnighter, a bit further a tandem overnighter to Sunapee or Gunstock
post #12 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Warp daddy
Gore & West mtn in tandem for a localized overnighter, a bit further a tandem overnighter to Sunapee or Gunstock
I wouldn't drive the 15 minutes from my parents' house to go to Gunrock.
post #13 of 34
that's what makes America great BJ --Freedom of opinion


BTW ,MT SNow is no prize IMO
post #14 of 34
When I worked at Mt Snow, their kids' ski school was pretty well-run, I thought.
Okemo pays its kids instructors very well, which keeps the good ones returning.
post #15 of 34
If the area on your list are the only places your family has been, take then up to Okemo or Stratton. The kids will love the big mountain feel and both mountains are chock full of long blue cruisers. Mohawk Mountain is up Route 7, probably just over an hour and a half for you. At just over 600 ft. vertical it is smaller than Catamount, bigger than Thunder Ridge and steeper than Butternut (almost anything is steeper than Butternut). We live in Southern CT and sometimes hit Mohawk for a Saturday or Sunday afternoon.
post #16 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by ts01
Both Gore and Whiteface are much lower key and less crowded than VT places.
Gore on a busy weekend= big headache IMHO. Parking is not easy when its three quarters of a mile down the access road. Weekdays are still good. Whiteface is hours outside of the intended distance from NYC.

Vermont choice that Shen mentioned....and is IMO the definition of family friendly: Bromley. Like Gore, its probably more like 4.5 hours from NYC.

Why go to someplace like Stratton that is essentially NYC transplanted onto a hill in Vermont when you can take the kids someplace where they can see real Vermont while it still (kinda) exists?

Sunapee and Gunstock? I've never driven to either from NYC, but I'm guessing its well outside of 3.5 hours. Same goes for Smuggs, etc.
post #17 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by skiingman
Gore on a busy weekend= big headache IMHO. Parking is not easy when its three quarters of a mile down the access road. Weekdays are still good. Whiteface is hours outside of the intended distance from NYC.
Wouldn't Gore be outside the drive time as well? Isn't Gore like an hour max from Whiteface? I mean they have dual use tickets.
post #18 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blizzboy283
Wouldn't Gore be outside the drive time as well? Isn't Gore like an hour max from Whiteface? I mean they have dual use tickets.
Depending on traffic and how much you are willing to exceed the speed limit, Gore is probably half an hour to an hour outside of the radius. Bromley is a similar length of time outside the radius, although its quite a few less miles. As I said in the first post, more like 4.5 hours to both places. Whiteface is more like 5.5 or 6.

I've never done the direct drive from Gore to Whiteface....no reason to do that in real life. An hour at least.
post #19 of 34
closer to nyc: windham
farther from nyc: smugglers notch
These two are pretty good on weekends as well as weekdays. Don't know anything about the ski schools of either, just thinking about terrain and crowds.
post #20 of 34
True that Gore (and Whiteface) are beyond stated drive times - but worth it, and if roads are good the extra drive isn't too tough. Re crowds at Gore, I had only one weekend there, not a holiday or peak season time, we got there early (first chair) and it was wonderful.

I assume like any eastern destination the holiday/peak crowds are a drag but is it so bad at Gore you can't just deal with it? I.E., setting an early alarm, avoiding mid-day cafeteria rush, staying away from gondola at peak times, the occasional singles line, etc.? Remember, Scott's baselines for comparison include Thunder Ridge, Butternut, and Jiminy Peak - not exactly wide open spaces.
post #21 of 34
I have to say, I skied a non-holiday Saturday at Gore last year in late January. The day started very cold (around -10), but warmed up into the 20s. We had no problems with any lift lines whatsoever -- just a full day of good skiing!

-Craig
post #22 of 34
Did you hit Hidden Valley in Vernon when you went to Mountain Creek? It is only about two miles away, but is a world of difference.. it is a smaller mountain, but is rarely busy and definitely has a family element..

Can anyone address the PA mountains?
post #23 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by jalexander
Can anyone address the PA mountains?
I'll second the question - one that seems interesting is Elk.
post #24 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by ts01
I'll second the question - one that seems interesting is Elk.
I grew up skiing in the Poconos in the 80's. I think you are better off heading north. The only reason we went was to save an hour or two from the philly burbs. Did go to Montage about a year ago with family, was pleasantly surprised.
post #25 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by skiingman
Depending on traffic and how much you are willing to exceed the speed limit, Gore is probably half an hour to an hour outside of the radius. Bromley is a similar length of time outside the radius, although its quite a few less miles. As I said in the first post, more like 4.5 hours to both places. Whiteface is more like 5.5 or 6.

I've never done the direct drive from Gore to Whiteface....no reason to do that in real life. An hour at least.
It takes about 1 hr. 10 mins. to drive from Gore's parking lot to Whiteface's.

As stated there's no reason to do it unless you're going both in a weekend. Coming from the south Gore is exit 23, Whiteface is exit 30. Once you get off either exit it's about 25 minutes to either mountain.

Add 45 minutes to your drive time going to Whiteface instead of Gore coming from the south.
post #26 of 34
You have some great skiing just north of you in Vermont, why would you want to go to the Poconos??? They are a ton smaller and won't really cost much different in dollars. Plus Vermont has a ton of slopeside. Slopeside is KEY to a family trip.

Okemo
Mount Snow
Stratton
post #27 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil Pugliese
You have some great skiing just north of you in Vermont, why would you want to go to the Poconos??? They are a ton smaller and won't really cost much different in dollars. Plus Vermont has a ton of slopeside. Slopeside is KEY to a family trip.

Okemo
Mount Snow
Stratton
Why is slopeside so important? I've never been on a family trip.
post #28 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by skiingman
Why is slopeside so important? I've never been on a family trip.
Ski in ski out..for lunch and bathroom. Plus if someone needs to quit early ar start late they aren't holding anyone up. At the end of the day you just go home no packing up gear. Easy to change clothing to either somehting different..or dry.
post #29 of 34
I agree, ski in/ski out is important for a family trip. Probably more critical with younger children and/or varying abilities. Unless you're a type of family that I'm not familiar with that enjoys skiing/resting/other activities on exactly the same schedule. The convenience of changing clothing as conditions change throughout the day is also useful, especially with children who get wet when it would be otherwise impossible to do so. Now if I'm by myself or with a friend of similar ability, I usually consider slopeside a waste of money.
post #30 of 34

Poconos/Vernon

The appeal of the Poconos/Vernon is that if you live around NYC, you can easily do a day trip to either.. leave your home by 7:30 , on the Mountain by 9

No, it isn't the best skiing in the world, but it is so darn convienent

You can also buy condos in those areas very cheaply if you are so inclined..
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