I need more!
March 1, 2012 10:27 PM   Subscribe

Good ski resorts for intermediate/beginner near NYC?

So, I've been fortunate enough to recently learn how to ski on a very well respected mountain in northern New England, through friends who work there and are experts at it. Now that I'm back home in NYC (rain, boo) I've found that I think I've gotten even more into skiing than I initially realized, and I really wanna go again! Fortunately, my brother enjoys snowboarding and is coming home from college next week, and we've decided to take a day trip together. Yay! We have a few parameters.

-My friends who taught me agree that I'm pretty good for a beginner. After 9 ish days on skis, I was doing all intermediate runs, and a couple of black diamond runs (this was all on a large mountain that caters to a lot of experts, not a smaller local mountain), so any mountain that's mostly beginner runs wouldn't work; I want to be challenged a bit.

-Preferably within 2, no more than 3 hours away from the city at the absolute most. We definitely need this to be a day trip. We do have access to a car.

-As cheap as possible, please! We're both young and poor. We do have to pay for rentals (skis, boots, and poles for me, board and boots for him, helmets for both of us) so ideally the lift tickets for a full day wouldn't be more than $50/60 per person, is this feasible? The cheaper the better.

-Considering the sort of winter we've had (snow? are you there?), take into account that we need this resort to still be open in mid March, when we'd likely be going.

Thanks so much in advance! Also, any advice about where to get good snow pants and goggles for a female in NYC/Westchester (or online) would be greatly appreciated.
posted by Emms to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (6 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Windham Mountain. 2¾ hours away, plenty of intermediate terrain, lift tickets $52 on weekdays.

For snow pants and goggles, you could try Paragon on Broadway, or the Burton store in Soho.
posted by nicwolff at 11:12 PM on March 1, 2012

Hunter Mountain is fun for a day trip. There's a nice (albeit short) cruisey black down the front of the mountain (Heuga Express) and a couple of more challenging ones (Annapurna and Upper K-27) elsewhere. Hunter West has several blacks (including the aforementioned Annapurna) but do check it's got snow and is open. That can be a problem.
posted by Decani at 3:16 AM on March 2, 2012 [1 favorite]

Blue Mountain is nice. About as far as Windham, but not crowded, they have a bunch of activities (concerts, events, etc) and is better than most anything else in the Pocono region.

If you're going on off days, really it depends on the conditions and what you like to do, but really most of the name brand places are going to be good for you.

On the Snow has snow reports and reviews.

Snowpants you probably want to try on before purchasing. Sports Authority (there's one in Westchester/White Plains) is having sales all the time due to the bad season.. you might be able to pick up some items on clearance for cheap.
posted by rich at 4:08 AM on March 2, 2012

Butternut is decent - black diamonds that are short but sweet. A ton of intermediate trails. 100% snow making so it has a good base even for this time of year.

Jiminy Peak is a little steeper than Butternut. It's also bigger, more expensive and a little further away.

I prefer Jiminy, but I ski Butternut because it's closer to me at only 5min away. Good luck and have fun.
posted by alfanut at 4:08 AM on March 2, 2012

The Catskills got some snow this week which will hopefully hold up for a little while, but warm weather is on the way so don't wait too long.

All 4 Catskills resorts are fun to ski, but Belleayre Mountain has a lot of solid blues and blacks and a much more relaxed vibe than Hunter and Windham. My group of ski instructor buddies does a lot of late-season skiing there. Weekend lift tickets are under $60, weekend ski rentals are $33, and they have a weekend lift/lesson/rental package listed for $97 (Nobody thinks they need a lesson, but at that price you'd be nuts to not take one anyway.) Weekday rates are significantly cheaper, and if you can go mid-week you'll have the place to yourself. It's a little over 2 hours from the city.

I am in love with Plattekill, which is even more relaxed and gets tons of snow. Very mom-and-pop operation, and like stepping out of a time machine -- it's definitely the Mad River Glen of the Catskills -- but it's a blast to ski there. It's the smallest of the Catskills resorts but there is 1100' of continuous pitch which is plenty of challenge even for experts. Lots of fun old-school twisty, narrow stuff on the sides. I'd say their blues are a cut above Belleayre's in terms of difficulty. Very uncrowded, very mellow, but serious terrain. When my late-season group goes up weekends we go to Plattekill.

Plattekill's prices are about the same as Belleayre's, though I don't know if they have lesson packages. They're only open Friday/Saturday/Sunday, so their snow holds up very, very well. If you don't mind figuring out what to do when things get a little tricky on the hill, and can go on the weekend, give Plattekill a shot. It's about another 20 minutes further than Belleayre.
posted by Opposite George at 5:08 AM on March 2, 2012 [2 favorites]

Whoops. I just reread your original question. Plattekill might be a little much for you, difficulty-wise. Belleayre will be no problem.
posted by Opposite George at 9:55 AM on March 2, 2012

« Older What piano music should I play next?   |   I know what to wear to the theater..... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.