While most people think of New York City as a concrete jungle, there’s actually quite a wonderful variety of things to do outdoors, even in the winter. One of our favorite cold weather activities is hitting the slopes, and luckily, there are tons of areas to go snowboarding and skiing near NYC. We’ve compiled this list of 17 fabulous ski resorts near NYC, including several that are perfect for beginners!

Best Places to Go Skiing Near NYC for Beginners

We know that skiing as a beginner can be stressful, especially when you’ve got so many choices for places to go! We’ve chosen 4 resorts for snowboarding and skiing near NYC from our list that are especially good for beginners to help you find the right place to learn.

Thunder Ridge Ski Area (NY)

  • Distance from NYC: 68 miles (1.5 hours)
  • Experience Levels: All levels
  • How to get there: By car, Thunder Ridge is about one hour north of NYC on I-87. For those without a car, you can get to Thunder Ridge on the Metro-North Ski Train during ski season.

Thunder Ridge Ski Area is a smaller gem of a ski resort, and it made our list for two reasons: it’s less than two hours from New York, and lift tickets are much cheaper compared to some of the larger, more commercial resorts. This means that skiing here is accessible and affordable to many New Yorkers, and it’s not hard to get to.

There are just over 20 trails, with a pretty even mix of easy, intermediate, and expert slopes. Thunder Ridge also has two beginner ski areas and a terrain park for first-timers to get some experience under their belt.

Photo Credit: Shinya Suzuki (Flickr CC)

Camelback Mountain

  • Distance from NYC: 86 miles (1 hour, 45 minutes)
  • Experience Levels: Beginner and intermediate
  • How to get there: While it’s easiest to drive to Camelback Mountain Resort, there is a Martz Trailways bus from Port Authority that arrives nearby at Mt. Pocono. From there, you can take a taxi to Camelback Mountain Resort.

For beginners to intermediate skiers that want to gain more experience on the slopes, Camelback Mountain is a fantastic option for skiing near NYC. It’s located just under 2 hours from the city and you can take a bus there if you don’t have a car.

Many of slopes at Camelback Mountain are beginner-friendly, even the ones that start at the top of the mountain, so you can try your hand at some of the longer trails even if you’re just getting started on skis or a snowboard. When you’re not skiing, they’ve also got an indoor water park that makes for some fun and family-friendly apres-ski activities!

Mohawk Mountain (CT)

  • Distance from NYC: 100 miles (2 hours)
  • Experience Levels: Beginner to intermediate
  • How to get there: By car, take I-684 N and drive for 2 hours. Unfortunately, it is very difficult to get here without a car, so if you are carless in NYC, we’d recommend renting one.

While smaller than many resorts on our list, the family-run Mohawk Mountain is a fantastic choice for beginners looking for places to ski or snowboard on a budget. This ski resort is less expensive than most resorts on our list because of its small size – you can get a lift ticket for less than $40 on weekdays (and $67 on weekends)! Clocking in at just two hours from Manhattan, it’s a perfect place for first-timers to go skiing near NYC.

Locally, Mohawk Mountain is known as “the home of snowmaking.” This sentiment rings true, as there’s active snowmaking on 95% of trails. A lift ticket is also good for night skiing, as many of the trails are open past the evening hours and are well-lit. 30% of the trails are beginner or intermediate level, meaning that you can definitely hone your skills on the many trails offered at Mohawk.

Catamount Ski Area

  • Distance from NYC: 120 miles (2.5 hours)
  • Experience Levels: beginner to intermediate. 36 runs (35% beginner, 45% intermediate runs)
  • How to get there: By car, drive north on Taconic State Parkway for ~2.5 hours.

Located in Berkshire mountains, Catamount Ski Area is a small, 36-trail ski area that’s great if you’re looking for smaller crowds and a more intimate skiing or snowboarding environment. The resort features lots of beginner to intermediate trails, perfect for those still learning and wanting to practice their skills.

They’ve got great prices on passes – unlimited, 6 day, weekday, and night passes. There’s also a discounted college pass for anyone with a university ID.

Jiminy Peak - skiing and ski resorts near NYC
Photo Credit: Massachusetts Office of Travel (Flickr CC)

Jiminy Peak Mountain Resort

  • Distance from NYC: 155 miles (3 hours)
  • Experience Levels: All levels, with several beginner to intermediate options
  • How to get there: By car, take Taconic State Parkway north to the resort. Unfortunately, if you don’t have a car, we’d recommend renting one to get to Jiminy Peak as it’s quite difficult to get there via bus.

Situated in the Berkshire Mountains of Massachusetts, Jiminy Peak Mountain Resort is one gem of a places to go skiing near NYC. While there are trails and resources for all levels of snowboarders and skiers, it is an especially wonderful ski resorts near NYC for beginners to get on their feet, with tons of long, beginner-friendly slopes to practice on. It’s also got some of the most stunning views in the Berkshires.

Best Ski Resorts Near NYC for All Levels

Mountain Creek

  • Distance from NYC: 53 miles (1.5 hours)
  • Experience Levels: All levels
  • How to get there: By car, take I-280 W to Highway 15 – in total, it takes about 1.5 hours to arrive. There are also lots of bus options to get to Mountain Creek from NYC, including SnowBus, Rally, and OvR.

Located just an hour and a half from New York, Mountain Creek Ski Resort is an ideal day trip or weekend getaway from the city to hit the slopes. With 46 trails over 160 ski-able acres, Mountain Creek is a medium-sized resort that’s perfect for a peaceful weekend getaway on the slopes. There’s also a wide variety of difficulty levels at the resort, from easy, smooth green hills to black diamond drops.

Not only does Mountain Creek have skiing and snowboarding, but they also have tubing, which is a family-friendly activity that anyone can enjoy. At the resort, you can also rent gear, take lessons, or enjoy the terrain park to change things up a bit.

Jack Frost Big Boulder

  • Distance from NYC: 105 miles (2 hours)
  • Experience Levels: All levels
  • How to get there: The easiest way to get to Jack Frost Big Boulder is to drive, as most of the public transit options are local and don’t come from NYC.

Jack Frost and Big Boulder Resorts, lovingly known as JFBB, are a conglomerate of trails that make up a small and locally loved spot for skiing near NYC. The JFBB resort consists of just 36 trails, fairly equally distributed between easy, intermediate, and advanced-level terrain. As it’s just 2 hours from New York City, Jack Frost Big Boulder is a wonderful place to take a ski or snowboarding day trip and fly down several of their various slopes.

Photo Credit: David (Flickr CC)

Hunter Mountain (NY)

  • Distance from NYC: 128 miles (2.5 hours)
  • Experience Levels: All Levels
  • How to get there: By car, it takes about 2.5 hours to arrive via I-87 N. Without a car, you can get to Hunter Mountain via an Urban Sherpa bus directly from the center of Manhattan.

With its year-round resort amenities, Hunter Mountain is a well-known spot for skiing and snowboarding near New York City. It’s got all of the major amenities, from rentals and lessons to double black diamond rated slopes and a terrain park. While the terrain isn’t as well-groomed as some of the larger resorts, it’s a nice spot for a day trip to try out some new and different slopes near NYC.

Located in the Catskill Mountains, Hunter Mountain is amid-sized resorts for skiing near New York City with a variety of trails (67, to be precise). It’s also one of the few ski resorts near NYC to be part of the Epic Pass network, so avid skiers and snowboarders with an Epic Pass can hit the slopes here for no additional charge.

Mountain Trails Cross Country

  • Distance from NYC: 127 miles (2.5 hours)
  • Experience Levels: All levels
  • How to get there: By car, it takes about 2.5 hours to arrive via I-87 N.

Just a few miles from Hunter Mountain Ski Resort is another, smaller resort called Mountain Trails, which is one of the few ski resorts near NYC that focuses exclusively on cross-country skiing and snowshoeing. Its self-proclaimed slogan is “the best kept secret in the Catskills.” For those who have done cross-country skiing in the past, you’ll know that the game is much different than downhill skiing, but it’s a fun and rewarding adventure if you’re willing to give it a try!

You can get gear rentals and lessons on cross country skiing at Mountain Trails, as well as access to several different forested trails. With its excellent, accommodating staff and well-maintained trails, Mountain Trails is a great place for experienced skiers as well as first-timers to learn cross country skiing.

Belleayre Mountain

  • Distance from NYC: 135 miles (2 hours, 45 minutes)
  • Experience Levels: All Levels
  • How to get there: By car, you can get to Belleayre Mountain in less than 3 hours via I-87 north and NY-28 W. Or, without a car, you can get there on the Belleayre Ski Bus.

Located just under 3 hours from NYC, Belleayre Mountain is a mid-size resort that’s got something for everyone. With 80 trails and 4 lodges where you can grab food or relax, it’s a fantastic place to spend a day or a weekend cruising down the slopes. Their interactive ski map is awesome for seeing the layout of the resort by difficulty, and if you’re new to skiing, you can head to their Snowsports School for lessons, gear, and more.

Additionally, if you can manage to get to Belleayre on a Wednesday, they have a great “Why Not Wednesday” ski special at just $36 for a lift ticket. That’s one of the lowest daily lift ticket prices on our list (and is definitely worth taking a day off work for, in our opinion).

Photo Credit: David Reeves (Flickr CC)

Windham Mountain

  • Distance from NYC: 145 miles (2 hours, 45 minutes)
  • Experience Levels: All Levels
  • How to get there: Windham Mountain is basically a straight shot up I-87 by car, or you can take an NYC SnowBus, OvR, or Urban Sherpa bus.

Windham Mountain is one of the most beloved places to go skiing near NYC, and for good reason – it’s a truly beautiful and family-friendly resort area, perfect for skiers of all levels. There are 54 trails here over 280 ski-able acres of terrain, which means that there are several longer, uninterrupted stretches for skiers wanting to hone their skills and enjoy the slopes.

For those wanting to plan a winter getaway, Windham Mountain has several great play and stay packages that combine the thrill of skiing with relaxation at discounted rates.

Mount Snow

  • Distance from NYC: 217 miles (4 hours)
  • Experience Levels: All levels
  • How to get there: By car, head north on I-87 past Albany and you’ll arrive at Mount Snow. For those without a car, you can take the NYC SnowBus or OvRRide to Mount Snow from the city.

Mount Snow is a Vermont-based ski resort that’s great for all levels. On-site, they’ve got over 589 ski-able acres across 85 trails, plus a large lodge for accommodations, a terrain park, and more. As part of the Epic Pass network, ski enthusiasts can access the resort with an Epic or Epic Local Pass starting in mid- to late-November.

While it is on the farther end of these ski resorts near NYC, it’s about 4 hours away from the city by car, perfect for a long weekend of skiing or snowboarding and relaxing. While beginners can enjoy the easier slopes and snow sports school amenities, there’s also a thrilling expert area that’s all rated black diamond or above. After long days of skiing, kick back and relax at the cozy Mount Snow Grand Summit Resort, which features several dining options and ski-in, ski-out access.

Photo Credit: row4food (Flickr CC)

Gore Mountain

  • Distance from NYC: 238 miles (4 hours)
  • Experience Levels: Intermediate and expert (90% of trails)
  • How to get there: Drive ~4 hours via I-87 N, or take the NYC Snow Bus directly to Gore Mountain from various locations in NYC.

While it’s a bit of a haul from New York City’s center, Gore Mountain is well-loved by the more experienced skiers and snowboarders out there, with 90% of trails rated as intermediate or expert level. As New York’s self-proclaimed biggest mountain, there are 110 trails across four peaks and over 400 ski-able acres, meaning there’s tons of variety for thrill-seeking riders. It’s one of the premier ski resorts near NYC for more advanced skiers, and you certainly won’t be disappointed here!

Gore Mountain Resort also offers snow sports lessons, season passes, and cross-country ski trails in addition to the more traditional slopes. While there isn’t an on-site accommodation option, the Gore Mountain Lodge is a nearby hotel that offers a free ski shuttle to the slopes.

Stratton Mountain

  • Distance from NYC: 220 miles (2 hours, 15 minutes)
  • Experience Levels: All levels
  • How to get there: Stratton Mountain is one of the only ski resorts near NYC that provides its own transport service from NYC to the resort, called the Stratton Jitney. Alternatively, you can drive north on I-87 for just over 4 hours.

Stratton Mountain is a local favorite for those who live in the Northeast United States, and it’s one of the best and most comprehensive places to go snowboarding and skiing near NYC. Towards the bottom of the mountain, there are several trails that are perfect for beginners or new skiers/riders to get some practice in, while the peak mostly contains intermediate and expert-level trails.

For those who prefer cross-country skiing, there are also a handful of Nordic ski trails on the premises. If you’re looking for a change of pace or simply enjoy cross-country trails more than downhill, Stratton Mountain is one of the best places to go this winter!

Okemo Ski Resort view - ski resorts near NYC New York
Photo Credit: Rudi Riet (Flickr CC)

Okemo Mountain

  • Distance from NYC: 250 miles (4.5 hours)
  • Experience Levels: All levels
  • How to get there: The easiest and most flexible way to get to Okemo Mountain is by car. For those without cars, you can get to Okemo Mountain directly from New York City via an OvRRide bus.

As one of the most popular winter family-friendly resorts in the Northeast, Okemo Mountain is a beautiful gem of a resort in the Green Mountains. It’s one of the most beloved ski resorts near NYC, and for good reason. There’s a snow sports school and gear rentals for beginners and less-experienced riders, but the trails span from easy bunny hills to double black diamond thrillers.

Perhaps the coolest thing about the Okemo Mountain trails is that even beginners can ski from the very top of the mountain all the way to the bottom, on entirely beginner-friendly trails. For skiers, there are both downhill and Nordic (cross-country) areas at Okemo, meaning you can shake up your skiing experience with a variety of different terrain and trails.

When you’re taking a break or ready for some apres-ski relaxation, the Mountain Lodge at Okemo is the perfect spot to stay a few nights and enjoy gorgeous slopeside views.

Killington Resort

  • Distance from NYC: 256 miles (4 hours, 45 minutes)
  • Experience Levels: All levels
  • How to get there: The easiest way to get to Killington is via a 4.5-hour car ride. However, for carless folks, you can get to Killington on an OvRRide bus.

As one of the largest places to go snowboarding and skiing near NYC, there’s a LOT to do and a ton of trails to ski or snowboard at Killington Resort. Here, you’ll find trails for every experience level, from bunny hills to double black diamonds, as well as tons of on-site amenities for when you’re ready to rest from the slopes. They’ve got lessons, rentals, and learning areas for beginners, and snowmaking in several sections of the park.

Off the slopes, book at room at the Killington Grand Resort for the perfect winter getaway – complete with a spa, dining, and cozy rooms for a good night’s sleep!

Whiteface Lake Placid Ski Resort sign - ski resorts near NYC
Photo Credit: Erik Jaeger (Flickr CC)

Whiteface Lake Placid

  • Distance from NYC: 300 miles (5 hours)
  • Experience Levels: All levels, with LOTS of trails rated intermediate to expert
  • How to get there: It’s about a 5-hour drive through scenic Upstate New York from NYC, if you choose to use a car. Those without cars can get to Whiteface using the NYC SnowBus.

Most famous for being a host to the 1980 Winter Olympics, Lake Placid is a dream destination for riders and non-riders alike. With an expansive ski and snowboard area, a cute resort town, and plenty of lodges and relaxation areas, Whiteface Lake Placid is one of the most world-renowned ski resorts near NYC.

With two peaks, there’s a lot of variety in terrain that you can experience as a rider at Whiteface. Most of the beginner-friendly trails are centered toward the bottom of the mountain, while the expert-level slopes begin higher up. On top of skiing and snowboarding, you can also visit the Olympic Museum or give bobsledding a try!

When it’s time to rest your head, there’s no better place to stay in the area than the Whiteface Lodge, situated close to the slopes in the town.

Skiing Near NYC: Additional Resources

What to Bring to Ski Resorts Near NYC

  • Waterproof outerwear – Possibly the most critical pieces of clothing for your ski trip packing list is durable, waterproof outerwear. Burton and Helly Hansen are famous ski brands for having best-in-class clothing that will keep you warm in the coldest, snowiest conditions. Click here to shop ski jackets and compare prices.
  • Thermal layers – Thermal baselayers are absolutely critical for a smooth skiing experience, as these will keep you warm and dry underneath your outerwear. The best kinds of thermal baselayers are made of Merino wool, which is moisture-wicking and comfortable. Our favorite brand of thermal layers is SmartWool – their tops and leggings are soft, lightweight, but warm and durable for all kinds of outdoor activities, including skiing. Click here to shop thermal tops and leggings and compare prices.
  • Ski goggles – No ski trip packing list would be complete without a pair of fog-resistant ski goggles, especially if you’re going somewhere that makes artificial snow. Ski slopes often have snow blowing into the air several times a day and it can be hard to keep freezing snowflakes out of your eyes, even during clear days. We use and recommend these ski goggles. However, you can shop ski goggles and compare reviews/prices here.

If you’re looking for a more comprehensive list of things to pack, head to our Ultimate Ski Trip Packing List to view our full packing list and gear recommendations for the slopes!

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