Where to find the best skiing near NYC this weekend

Like water-skiing, but on land! via Flickr
Like water-skiing, but on land! via Flickr

We’re in the midst of awful, awful cold, but there’s good news on the horizon. No, not that’s warming up, but at least it’ll be warmer this weekend, at a balmy 31 degrees. That means it should be warm enough for snow, but not so cold you just want to curl up inside and die. So get out there and take advantage of the fresh powder at these nearby skiing spots.

NYC Snow Bus ($72 depending on where you go)

Obviously, a school bus that’s cheap, drops you off at the slopes, and buys you beer is going to be our favorite option. This brilliant invention, spawned by the same people who came up with the Beach Bus (i’m sensing a theme) boards its passengers at one of several locations throughout the city including Barclays Center, Williamsburg, and Union Square, drops you off at a nearby mountain for the day, and then picks you up when you’re done with your own personal winter X-Games.

There’s also massive perks, like free coffee, tea, Red Bull, Runa Bars, and they’ll usually pull up to a bar at the end of a trip and buy everyone a round. On top of all that awesomeness, they do clothing rentals too, so even the most apathetic of skiers only has to walk to their nearest pick-up to find themselves on the slopes and highly caffeinated in a few hours. They mainly go to Mountain Creek, a ski resort 90 minutes away in New Jersey, but they also make longer outings that board earlier in the morning. You can find all of the information on their latest trips here, along with more details about their rentals and beer-giving.

Ski Sundown ($58 for 1 adult ticket)

Ski Sundown in New Hartford, Connecticut, (2 hours away) is a pretty good deal, coming in at just under $60 for a ticket. It’s a great hill for beginners or for anyone not looking for a big challenge, and it’s also open late, as the name might imply, closing at 10pm, which allows for a hell of a lot of skiing. The main caveat here, though, is that public transportation out to these hills isn’t great, or existing at all, so you if you’re looking to ski, best bet is to have a friend with a car.

Belleayre Mountain ($59 for 1 adult ticket on weekends), Highmount, NY

One of New York’s best options for skiing, Belleayre Mountain is actually owned by the state of New York, so the fact that the prices are low and there’s plenty of routes (47 in total) for everybody, from beginner to expert, shouldn’t be that big of a surprise. They’ve also got areas for snowboarders looking to do some rad tricks (these are terms I learned from a movie  in the 80’s), along with areas for cross-country skiers. This place is pretty popular, though, so expect some crowds, but still, if New York owns it, then you can bet that New York is going to use it.

Minnewaska State Park Preserve ($8  for parking), Kerhonkson, NY

For those looking for the absolute cheapest in true Brokelyn fashion, the obvious choice comes in at Minnewaska State Park 2 hours outside of New York, which has excellent skiing this time of year, and none of the amenities. This is a state park, so don’t expect any of the apres-ski cocktail lounges or ski clubs or, you know, guaranteed snow. That being said, Minnewaska has great trails for cross-country, beginner, and especially advanced skiers, and it’s outside of New Paltz, so if you’re looking for no-nonsense, get-in-and-get-out skiing, then this is probably the place for you.

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