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Where to ski without leaving New York


New York state skiingIt may not have the cache of Colorado, but turns out New York does have some ski cred. The big, beautiful state has more than 50 ski resorts, more than any other state in the country. Plus, it hosted two Winter Olympic Games. (Take that, Vermont.)

And if you can’t swing a week-long trip to the Rockies, you’ll find a mountain here that suits your ski and snowboard interests and ability—from beginners, experts, families, and those just in it for the apres-ski hot toddy.

Here are five New York mountains to keep you in winter-sports shape (and cute, colorful down coats) this season. —Lisa Elaine Held

(Photos:; Henke for Saska Sport Industries, circa 1972. Image © Condé Nast Archive/Mike Reinhardt)


Get Started
Thunder RidgeFor the reluctant traveler: Thunder Ridge

Car-less city folk rejoice: it’s just a 60-minute ride on the “Metro-North Ski Train” (a discounted train-and-lift-ticket combo) to Patterson, New York, where a shuttle bus will pick you up and drop you at the mountain. There, 35 trails and five lifts await.

(Photo: Facebook/Thunder Ridge)


BelleayreFor the absolute beginner: Belleayre Mountain

This resort in the Catskill Preserve, about 2.5 hours from Manhattan, calls itself “the best place to learn to ski and snowboard in the Northeast.” That’s thanks to its designated Learning Area, which is physically separated from the larger mountain, where you can get your ski legs before even hitting the bunny hill. It also offers an extensive list of instructional options, from private and group clinics to workshops for both adults and kids.

(Photo: Facebook/Belleayre Mountain)


greekpeakFor the weekend getaway (and wine) lover…and casual skier: Greek Peak

If a “ski weekend” immediately brings to mind sipping mulled wine next to a roaring fire in a comfy sweater (and oh, yeah…the flying downhill part), this Finger Lakes resort includes Hope Lake Lodge, where you can cuddle up in front of your own fireplace, hit the spa, or relax in a hot tub. Plus, the Finger Lakes wine trails are minutes away, where many of the 200 wineries (most with cozy warm tasting rooms) offer tastings.

(Photo: Hope Lake Lodge)


CatamountFor the whole family: Catamount

This mountain, which straddles the Massachusetts border, is known for its variety of terrain, which is great if you’re a beginner mom with an expert husband and a hit-the-jumps snowboarder son. Or if you’re bringing a group of friends whose experience levels vary. And while it’s a wide, varied mountain, all trails end in the same lodge area, so it won’t be hard to regroup after trail runs.

(Photo: Facebook/Catamount)


WhitefaceFor the serious thrill-seeker: Whiteface

Take hitting the slopes seriously? Then you should probably make it to the highest ski peak in the East, which also hosted the Winter Olympics…twice. With three Adirondack peaks and 87 trails, you may need a few days to take it all in. Fortunately there are some amazing lodges in Lake Placid to settle into for the duration.

(Photo: Facebook/Whiteface Mountain)


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