Hunter Mountain Ski Getaways

ski getaways

Just two hours from the New York metro area, in the beauty of the northern Catskill Mountains, you'll find Hunter Mountain.

With 1600' of vertical, 53 trails, and plenty of uphill capacity, Hunter soaks up those New York metro crowds without too much trouble. And the crowds will find snow when they arrive. Although a high elevation helps with natural snow (The actual summit of Hunter Mountain tops out at 4025 feet.) 100% of Hunter's terrain is covered by a powerful snowmaking system.

The terrain in question is a bit on the steep side, but never-evers and beginners needn't worry. Hunter One is more or less dedicated to them, and the four shorter lifts there serve green circle terrain only. The E lift serves intermediate terrain and one black diamond, The Highlands, and these trails are the perfect place to practice newly acquired skills before heading over to the main mountain or Hunter West.

The main mountain features a good mix of intermediate and black diamond trails, with the blue square stuff mostly found mid-mountain down (with the exception of very fine Belt Parkway from the top), and the tougher stuff off the Snowlite Express Quad. East Side Drive, Minya-Konka, and The Cliff are all good, steep cruisers. Double black K-27 is the steepest trail here (a short section of Upper Crossover matches it), but for the mountain's steepest trails head over to Hunter West.

Here you'll find all double blacks with the exception of Taylor's Run (which you can only get to via the double black Claire's Way) and Way-Out, which has a couple of blue square entrances. Otherwise, the steeps here consist of Annapurna, Westway, Claire's Way, and The Colonel's Alternate, all double blacks from the top.

But you don't need to ski or ride Hunter's slopes and trails to have fun. Lower Broadway is home to a large and varied terrain park and Hunter's halfpipe, which seems to get a little bigger each year (officially it's 400' long). A 1000-watt sound system, yurt, and hot dog stand are part of the package here. There's a second park on 42nd Street. Naturally, Hunter takes good care of these assets with specialized grooming equipment for the park and a Pipe Magician for the ᄑ pipe. In fact, you'll find quite a bit of the terrain groomed on a regular basis, but some of the steepest stuff - Annapurna, for example - is left to bump up.

If you don't ski or board at all (and Hunter's low-stress learning programs can't convince you to try) a little bit of the mountain has been set aside for snowshoers (there's a scenic trail which starts near the Summit Lodge and another that begins near the tubing park), and tubing fans, where three lifts serve a bunch of chutes of varying degrees of difficulty in a park at the base.