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Recommended ski area near New York

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 
I'm off to see my sister in NY soon (I'm from the UK). As a reward for the long trip I'm going to get in 1-2 days of skiing. I'm trawling the internet now but any info./recommendations on places with 2 hours max of NY ?

All info. gratefully received.

Thanks
post #2 of 27
Thread Starter 
Hmmm, not much on offer of any size and a chance to improve my ice skiing technique it would appear. One day only me thinks.
post #3 of 27
Hunter, Windham and Bellayre. . . Mountain Creek in NJ if you like Snowboarders and Park/Pipe kind of stuff
post #4 of 27
Here's five.

The two "best" would be Hunter and Windham. Both of these are probably a bit more like 2.5 hours from NYC. Hunter has better expert terrain. Windham is a bit easier to get to (and maybe a bit more family oriented).

You'd be happier hitting any of these on a weekday. (Or get there early.)

http://www.huntermtn.com/ NY

http://www.windhammountain.com/ NY (a bit north of Hunter)

http://www.belleayre.com/ NY (west of Hunter)

http://www.plattekill.com/winter/index.html NY (west of Bellearye) weekends only, basically.

http://www.mountaincreek.com/index.htm NJ (Northwest of NYC)


There are also the Pocano resorts in Pennsylvania out on route 80 west of NYC (Camelback, Shawnee). Easy to get to but crowed on weekends.
post #5 of 27
I'd recommend lengthening your travel allotment and go to Southern Vermont. Mt. Snow and Stratton are the two that come to mind. It'll be leagues better.

And if you can, go to Stowe Vermont although it'll be a long drive. In the eastern US a general rule of thumb, the further north you go, the better the ski areas will be, and the more snow it will get.

If you do need to keep a short drive I'd recommend Hunter.
post #6 of 27
NickW,

Will you be skiing on a weekend or weekday? On weekdays, I'd recommend Hunter Mountain or Windham. Hunter is better if you are an expert skier...longer steep (and narrow) trails and bumps. Windham is a better choice if you prefer the cruisers. Now both of these mountain do get crowded on the weekends due to their proximity to NYC. It also doesn't help that there are buses that run up there on the weekends.

If you must do a weekend, Belleayre is probably my top recommendation. It's a bit old-school, but it's a nice place overall. There is no HSQ, but the trails aren't as crowded. All of these recommendations are a little over 2 hours from NYC. If you must stay within 2 hours, you can check out Blue Mt in Roxbury, PA or Mountain Creek in Vernon, NJ. These 2 places are also open at night. **NOTE: I HIGHLY recommend staying away from Mountain Creek on the weekends. There are a lot of inexperienced people there, ettiquette is completely lost, and it's probably the most consistently crowded ski slope I've ever been too. It's fine for a weekday though.

There are also day trip bus tours that go to some of the VT mountains as well on the weekends. That might be worth looking into as an option if your want a bigger mountain experience.
post #7 of 27
Excellent summary, rjc1976!

Blue Mountain (west of NYC on route 78) south of route 80.

http://www.skibluemt.com/ (another Pocano ski area?)

My one experience with the Pocanos on a weekend was insane crowds (I didn't even ski).

I'd think that weekdays would be preferrable for -any- ski area (not only Hunter and Windham). Interesting that Belleayre is a good choice for weekends (haven't been there in a long while).

I -have- been to Hunter and Windham on weekends and they have been OK. They -are- much better on weekdays!

Elk Mountain (north of Scranton, PA) is within 2.5 h (maybe) of NYC and nice (I was there a while ago). Montage (-in- Scranton, PA) has got to be reliably insane on weekends.

It would be quite reasonable, if you had two separate days to try Windham on day and Hunter on the other (or Hunter twice).

Of course, Vermont has bigger mountains but you'd need two full days (with lodging) to make that worthwhile.


Of the "local" resorts, the ones in the Catskills (Hunter, Windham, Belleayre) will likely have the most reliable snow conditions (being significantly NW of NYC).


Since you are not skiing much, bring your boots and do a ski demo (rent "high end" skis) rather than bringing your skis. Keep in mind that pickings might be slim at the end of the season (after mid February). Hunter and Windham have on site "demo" centers. And there are a few ski shops out side of both that rent skis and maybe have "demo" programs.
post #8 of 27
Just be sure to stay away from Holiday Mountain-(87 miles from NY) horrible, worn out and poorly run. Just a warning!
post #9 of 27
Go as far north as possible. It's very warm here right now and the PA resorts won't recover for a while. The Catskills resorts should be OK.
post #10 of 27
My money's on Hunter. Definitely worth the drive.
post #11 of 27
Thread Starter 
Thanks to everyone for the info. Nothing beats local knowledge.

Unfortunately it'll be the w/e. I'd narrowed it down to Hunters or Belleayre based on what I could find on various websites.

I like to think I'm a fairly good skier (but hey what would I know, I'm a Brit !) so Hunter may be the best bet to get on the less busy trails. I went to Jackson and didn't do Corbet's but then from what I saw very few people did.

I'm going to borrow my sister's skis. She's got some Rossignol race carvers (9S or something like that) I got her a couple of years ago. I've been itching to try them ever since so icy conditions won't be the end of the world.

So maybe Hunters one day and Windham the next or Hunters twice as recommened

Thanks again.
post #12 of 27
Belleayre - weekends (excellent snomaking and grooming)
Hunter - midweek (excellent snomaking and grooming)
Plattekill - Friday, Saturday, Sunday after a 12+ inch powder dump (limited snomaking and NO CROWDS)
Windham - night skiing

Belleayre is $10 days 1/23 - 1/27

Lodging in the Catskill Mountains

Check out Potter Brothers Ski Shop for special lift ticket deals. Half mile from New york State Thruway exit 19 .

There are some bus packages out of NYC. For example: Adirondack Trailways Ski Bus Leaves daily from Port Authority Terminal (NYC). Daily round trip ticket is only $62.00 per person and includes your lift ticket! Our Overnight Ski Bus packages are available for one or two nights stays and includes lodging, lift tickets and shuttle service to and from Belleayre Mt. Call 1(800) 431-4555 0r 1(800) 942-6904 for more information.
post #13 of 27
Typically on a weekend, Windham has shorter lines, and fewer weekend warriers (out of control skiers) than Hunter. No question that Hunter has better expert terrain. Another option would be the Berkshires (Western Massachusetts), Butternut, Catamount, Brodie and Jiminy Peak. I don't know if any of them have any snow, but they will be friendlier on weekends than the Catskill areas.
post #14 of 27
In my opinion Windham really sucks. I much prefer Belleayre over Windham. If I had to do two days, I would do Hunter and Belleayre.
post #15 of 27
If you did well in Jackson, you won't like any and all of them. I grew up in that region, skied in Great Gorge (now Mt. Creek) every weekend. Over there, nothing compares to Jackson. So, spend a few more bucks and fly to SLC and ski in the powder of Alta and Snowbird. In fact, you can catch a red eye out of SLC after Sunday skiing and still work in NYC on Monday.

:
post #16 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by catskills
Belleayre - weekends (excellent snomaking and grooming)
Hunter - midweek (excellent snomaking and grooming)
Plattekill - Friday, Saturday, Sunday after a 12+ inch powder dump (limited snomaking and NO CROWDS)
Windham - night skiing

Belleayre is $10 days 1/23 - 1/27

Lodging in the Catskill Mountains

Check out Potter Brothers Ski Shop for special lift ticket deals. Half mile from New york State Thruway exit 19 .

There are some bus packages out of NYC. For example: Adirondack Trailways Ski Bus Leaves daily from Port Authority Terminal (NYC). Daily round trip ticket is only $62.00 per person and includes your lift ticket! Our Overnight Ski Bus packages are available for one or two nights stays and includes lodging, lift tickets and shuttle service to and from Belleayre Mt. Call 1(800) 431-4555 0r 1(800) 942-6904 for more information.

the only thing to add to this post ,which is dead on, get to Belleayre early on the weekend for a good parking spot. You can get a ton of skiing done before lunch then it doesn't matter if it gets crowded.
post #17 of 27
I'm going to add in a vote for Belleayre especially over Hunter. Hunter is massively crowded and frankly, the layout is a bit boring after two or three runs.

On average, Bell has better grooming, friendlier skiers and less crowds. I hear they've added a glade this year though I don't know if there's enough coverage for it right now.

Also, on the way home, stop into Winchell's Pizza for a kickin local brew and excellent Italian food. It's a red building on your right on Rt 28 as you're coming back from Bell.

Good luck!
post #18 of 27
two thoughts:

1 - if conditions permit - good natural snow - plattekill is the best, hands down, for weekend skiing near NYC

2 - thinking a little outside the box: check out www.jetblue.com for flights to burlington, vt - close to stowe, sugarbush, smugglers' notch, bolton valley, etc. i just picked a random weekend two weeks out and got this itinerary for $140 round trip.

Fri, 27 Jan 06
Flight 1032
5:10 pm Depart New York NY (JFK)
6:20 pm Arrive Burlington, VT (BTV)

Sun, 29 Jan 06
Flight 1033
6:50 pm Depart Burlington, VT (BTV)
8:00 pm Arrive New York NY (JFK)

maybe a little more than two hours when you add in getting to/from the airports, but if you're staying in the city, you can get to and from JFK quite easily and cheaply on the train now. at the burlington end i bet some of the resorts have shuttles and/or good ski/stay deals. your chances of good conditions are much better up north, and you'll have much better terrain around burlington than around nyc (except plattekill!).

finally don't be put off by lousy conditions if that's what you're stuck with. the crowds will stay home and if it's even remotely skiable, you'll have a great day with the mountain to yourself.
post #19 of 27
Imagine skiing in the Tokyo Metro at rush hour and you have Hunter and all of the NY attitude to go with it.

Bellaire is going to be a lot more relaxing.
post #20 of 27

Flyling?

Quote:
thinking a little outside the box: check out www.jetblue.com for flights to burlington, vt
How does this make more sense than driving? You still have to get to the ski areas and that will take at least an hour.

1/2h to get to JFK, 1/2h waiting to get on the plane, 1h flying, 1/2 waiting for luggage, 1h getting (somehow) to ski area. Total 3.5 h (optimistic). Compared to 5-6 driving. Plus flying is $140 per person!
post #21 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by njkayaker
How does this make more sense than driving?
Maybe it does, maybe it doesn't ... just wanted to point out an option that would likely yield better conditions and certainly yield better terrain. Yes, there's increased travel time and plane fare, but maybe that's a worthwhile tradeoff. Maybe not. Not my decision.
post #22 of 27
If you are skiing on the weekend and snow is flying, your best bet without a doubt is Plattekill over Hunter, windham or belleayre. No crowds to speak of and good high end terrain
post #23 of 27
I went to Hunter this past Sunday. As I expected, most of the mountain was open, and had very good snow (considering there was no natural snow). As for lines and crowds, I never waited more than 5 minutes for a lift, including the most popular HSQ. While I'm not a big Hunter fan, it was a great day, which leads to the point that each of the areas discussed in this thread have many qualities, many of which depend on the weather, day of the week, snow coverage, special events, crowds, etc. As an aside we stopped at the Last Chance Cheese in Tannersville (Route 23A), which is a great place for a post ski meal, and some delicious goodies.
post #24 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chaskier
I went to Hunter this past Sunday. As I expected, most of the mountain was open, and had very good snow (considering there was no natural snow). As for lines and crowds, I never waited more than 5 minutes for a lift, including the most popular HSQ. While I'm not a big Hunter fan, it was a great day, which leads to the point that each of the areas discussed in this thread have many qualities, many of which depend on the weather, day of the week, snow coverage, special events, crowds, etc. As an aside we stopped at the Last Chance Cheese in Tannersville (Route 23A), which is a great place for a post ski meal, and some delicious goodies.
hmmm...i did not go to hunter last weekend but i'm pretty sure that the numbers of people you saw on your visit were lower than the usual. sunday is usually the less busy of the two days though...
post #25 of 27
If the snow is good and you don't need a base lodge sushi bar, Plattekill without a doubt.
post #26 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Billd
I'd recommend lengthening your travel allotment and go to Southern Vermont. Mt. Snow and Stratton are the two that come to mind. It'll be leagues better.

And if you can, go to Stowe Vermont although it'll be a long drive. In the eastern US a general rule of thumb, the further north you go, the better the ski areas will be, and the more snow it will get.

If you do need to keep a short drive I'd recommend Hunter.
I think this post makes the most sense. Leave a little earlier and spend a little more time in the car. It will be worth it. Look at the map and check out Mt Snow and Okemo. Vermont is beautiful! IMHO.

I don't recommend Stratton.
post #27 of 27
This might sound like a dumb question, but where is your siter's home mountain?? That might be a good starting point. Out of the mountains mentioned above I have only been to a few of the VT mountains and Belleayre. Belleayre is pretty cool, good laid back vibe, however the mountains in VT are much bigger. I noticed you said near New York. I am assuming you mean New York City (we are a state too!!), so depending on exactly where she is that could chage things too. People in 4 different states (PA,CT,NY and unfortunately NJ) say near NY. So depending on where she is some options may be easier than others. However anything in the east will seem lame compared to Jackson. Have fun!!!
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