Escape the city and ward off the winter blues with an activity-packed weekend getaway to the scenic Hudson Valley. Whether it’s hitting the slopes, meeting an owl or lacing up your skates, opportunities for winter fun abound. Check out some of our favorite winter delights that promise fun for all ages.
Patterson, New York
Embrace the frigid temperatures and hit the slopes at Thunder Ridge Ski Area (137 Birch Hill Road, Patterson. 845-878-4100, thunderridgeski.com), which offers 30 trails to accommodate all skill levels and interests as well as ski school. From the glass atrium at the base lodge, you can see almost the entire mountain.
Warwick, New York
Conveniently located in Warwick, just one hour from New York City in the Hudson Valley of Orange County, New York, Mount Peter (51 Old Mt. Peter Rd, Warwick. 845-986-4940) is famous for its free beginner ski and snowboard lessons, racing programs for kids, two lodges and night skiing. Originally opened by Macy’s department store in 1936 for a ski apparel fashion shoot, this family-run establishment is the oldest operating ski area in New York State. This winter destination may seem small compared to Windam and Hunter Mountains, but don’t let looks deceive you. It has long been the go-to hill for many area families, Long Islanders, New Jerseyans and city slickers. It also is home to tubing fun that any age can enjoy, even offering its popular Little Tikes Tubing Area, a dedicated section complete with kid-size tubing for little adventurers under the usual 42-inch height requirement. The expansive views of the Warwick Valley, just feet away from the Appalachian Trail, adds to the overall appeal.
Tuxedo Park, New York
Join Doc Bayne, educator and environmentalist, for an approximately three-mile hike to the site of a beaver lodge in Tuxedo Park’s Sterling Forest State Park. If deemed safe, participants walk on the ice to get an “up-close and personal” view of the beavers’ sanctuary while taking in the natural beauty of the area’s great outdoors. Or visit sites such as Southfields Furnace, the Sterling Furnace and the Sterling Forge, and learn about the group’s special outdoor activities including snowshoeing and ice fishing. Registration is required. For more information or to register, call the Friends of Sterling Forest at 845-351-5907.
West Nyack, New York
Hit the ice at Palisades Center Ice Rink (4900 Palisades Center Drive, West Nyack. 845-353-4855, palisadescentericerink.com), located in Palisades Mall in West Nyack, New York. The shopping and entertainment mecca offers public skating lessons and serves the recreational and professional ice-skating needs of Rockland County. Skating schedules and rates may vary, so call ahead or check their website before you lace up.
Dobbs Ferry, Westchester, New York
You’ve seen it in the Winter Olympics, but did you know that you could learn to curl right in Westchester, at Dobbs Ferry? Despite the ice, you’ll find a warm atmosphere at The Ardsley Curling Club, which has been in operation since 1932 and offers curling classes for all skill levels. Meet Olympic Gold Medalist Tyler George Feb. 2-3 and witness some serious curling skills in action. Visit ardsleycurling.com or call 914-591-8019 for more information.
Cornwall-on-Hudson, New York
Have a hoot of time on a woodland excursion at Hudson Valley Nature Museum’s Owl Prowls, where guests can learn about these fascinating creatures then bundle up and head outdoors looking for owls in the wild. Or kick off maple sugaring season on Feb. 23 with special seasonal events. Learn to identify and tap sugar maple trees and discover techniques used by Native Americans, pioneers and modern-day farmers. Finish with a taste test. More info at hhnaturemuseum.org. Wildlife Education Center, 25 Boulevard, Cornwall-on-Hudson. 845-534-7781.