Queens Mamas Winter Fun Guide: Car Free Ski Getaways

By this time last year, we were waist deep in snow around some parts of the city. Luckily, we’ve been spared of blizzards so far. But that doesn’t mean your favorite ski resorts aren’t open for business. In fact, there are plenty of resorts close to the city that are accessible via public transportation, so you don’t even need a car to have some fun in the snow! Pack up your ski bunnies and check out our list of car free ski getaways.

Tuxedo Ridge Ski Center at Sterling Forest

You can ski on one of their 7 trails, including a Kitty Trail for beginners, plus experience their snow tube park. They have 100 acres of skiing and snowboarding fun ready and waiting for you. Be sure to check out their deals page for a list of their upcoming discounts and deals, like “kids pay their age day” on January 18th.

Where: 581 Route 17A West, Tuxedo NY 10987

How to get there: ShortLine Buses from Port Authority to Tuxedo Ridge – Click here to purchase a round trip bus ticket and discounted lift ticket.

  • Bus departs NYC: 9:10am
  • Bus departs Tuxedo Ridge: 4:43pm

OR

MetroNorth/NJ Transit Trains

MetroNorth/NJ Transit Line:  Main/Bergen-Port Jervis Line

  • PICK-UP TIMES from TUXEDO STATION: 10:17am, 12:17pm, 2:36pm
  • DROP-OFF TIMES Tuxedo to Penn Station: 4:23pm (meet to leave @ 4:05pm),  6:24pm (meet to leave @ 6:05pm)

If you give them 3 days notice, they’ll even pick you up from the train station. To make a reservation, email  info@tuxedoridge.com or call 845-351-1122.

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Windham Mountain

This ski resort is incredibly popular, and with all there is to do there, it’s no wonder why. They have an Adventure Park, which includes a kids snowmobiling area, in addition to snow tubing, skating, and of course, skiing. They also have a ton of events going on, like their Western Hoedown happening on January 7th & 8th.

Where: 33 Clarence D. Lane Road Windham, NY 12496

How to get there:

  • Island Ski Tours offers various trips to Windham, with some pick up locations in Queens and Long Island, as well as Grand Central in NYC. You must reserve ahead – visit their website for upcoming trips, pick up locations, and pricing.
  • Emilio’s Ski & Snowboard also offers various trips to Windham, based from their shop in Forest Hills.
  • Windham also works directly with local operators, including Adirondack Trailways, which services Windham through the Port Authority. Click here for a complete listing of the companies Windham suggests. If you are staying over at the Windham Inn, and you take Amtrac up to the resort, Windham will send a shuttle to pick you up from the train station.

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Hunter Mountain

Hunter claims they have the most terrain open in the NY Metro area, with 29 trails and 9 lifts available for fun in the snow. They also have snowtubing, snowboarding, and even a zipline. They have a major New Years Eve party planned for this weekend, with live music, a torchlight parade, and fireworks.

Where: Route 23a & Route 32a, Palenville, NY 12463

How to get there: Much like Windham, Hunter Mountain also has a list of local tour companies that it suggests, one of which is also Emilio’s Ski & Snowboard.

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Thunder Ridge

One of the closer ski resorts to the city, at around an hour away, is Thunder Ridge. Currently, the resort is open with only beginner terrain available, since the mild temperatures of late have made it difficult for them to produce snow. They offer private and group lessons in their Snowsport School.

Where: 50 Thunder Ridge Rd., Patterson, NY 12563

How to get there: If you take the Metro North Ski Train on weekends and holidays, there will be a shuttle waiting to take you to Thunder Ridge for free – no advance reservations required – at 9:30am, 11:30am and 1:30pm. Plus, if you want to visit during the week, purchase a ski package and they’ll send the shuttle to pick you up at the station.

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Belleayre Mountain

This resort has 10 trails open with 5 lifts available, and has a host of activities planned for the winter. Their Winter Festival Week is the last week in January at Belleayre with all sorts of special events. Saturday, January 21st is Belleayre’s Kids Carnival at Discovery Lodge, with a Torchlight Parade.

Where: Belleayre Mountain Road, Pine Hill, NY 12465

How to get there:

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If you’re feeling adventurous, Emilio’s Ski & Snowboard also offers trips to Okemo, Stratton, and Mt. Snow in Vermont. Contact Emilio’s for more information on those trips.

 

As with almost every winter activity, contact the ski resort AND either the bus or train line you’ll be using for your trip before you leave to make sure everything is still open and functioning. While it may be clear skies here, the weather might not be so kind where you’re going, so it’s a good rule of thumb to double check before leaving the house, especially if you’re bringing the kids along with you.

 

Jesseca Stenson