Despite not having a white Christmas, it’s been cold enough for some local ski resorts to make snow and open earlier this week. While limited trails are open, you’ll be able to get a head start to the season.
Skiing and snowboarding offer a wonderful opportunity for the entire family to have fun outdoors while getting some beneficial physical activity. In the process, you’ll be burning calories, strengthening lower body muscles, improving your flexibility and engaging your core muscles, among other benefits.
Ski resorts like Bear Creek Mountain Resort in Macungie, Spring Mountain Adventures in Schwenksville and Blue Mountain Resort in the Poconos make the sport easily accessible from the Pottstown area.
Comfortable lodges are available if you’re not up for skiing, but the kids are, and you prefer to take a book and cozy up by the fire indoors with some hot chocolate while they hit the slopes. For those of all ages new to skiing, lessons can get you on the slopes in no time. Lessons provide a solid foundation of the basics and help avoid some potential dangers associated with self-taught skiing.
Bear Creek’s “Learn to Ski or Ride” package includes all of the equipment you need, along with a certified instructor who will take you through multiple stations where you’ll learn the basics before graduating to the slopes. Learning the proper techniques will give you the confidence necessary to enable you to have a safe and enjoyable time on the mountain.
Since skiing is a pricey activity, resorts offer some opportunities to get in on the fun more affordably. At Bear Creek, anyone age five and under and those 70 and older can get a free lift ticket any day of the week.
They also offer reduced lift ticket prices to those currently active in the military, police, fire, EMS and 911 professions. In addition, special rate passes are available Monday through Thursday for college students and EPSC/ WPSC ski club members. Youth aged 6 to 18 and seniors, aged 61 to 69 are offered reduced pricing on tickets daily.
Here’s a guide to some local resorts to explore this season within easy reach:
Bear Creek Mountain Resort
Located within an hour of Philadelphia, Bear Creek Mountain Resort suits skiers and snowboarders of all levels. Their beginner area is served by a carpet lift and triple chair while Sasquatch, their most challenging black diamond trail, has a 50% slope for expert skiers. Bear Creek also offers three progressive terrain parks — Cascade Park, Black Bear Park, and Family Park — with a wide variety of freestyle features. Hotel guests, day guests, and season ticket holders are all welcome. Their award-winning Snowsports School and certified instructors offer lessons to suit any age or ability. Private and group sessions are available. Bear Creek Mountain Resort is located at 101 Doe Mountain Lane, Macungie. For more information, call 866-754-2822 or visit www.bcmountainresort.com. Check trail conditions online before you go.
Spring Mountain Adventures
Spring Mountain Adventures is a year-round place for family fun where you can experience skiing, snowboarding and ice skating all in one location. Spring Mountain has 8 trails, two snow tubing runs, four lifts, and a terrain park. If you or any member of your group don’t have the equipment, they offer boots, skis, poles and helmets adjusted to meet your skill level. If you need lessons they offer a variety of programs designed to meet your abilities and help you take your skiing and snowboarding skills to new levels. Spring Mountain Adventures is located at 757 Spring Mount Road, Spring Mount. For more information, call 610-287-7900 or visit www.springmountainadventures.com
Blue Mountain Resort
Thrill seekers and novices are welcome at Blue Mountain. Snow tubing, skiing and snowboarding — whatever your speed, there are plenty of ways to experience the Pocono Mountains. Whether you’ve never seen snow or want to improve your skiing or snowboarding skills — skiing in Pennsylvania has never been easier thanks to the instructors at Blue Mountain Learning Center where you can explore their different lesson types to find the perfect lesson for you. Blue Mountain Resort is located at 1660 Blue Mountain Drive, Palmerton (Poconos). For more information, call 610-826-7700 or visit www.skibluemt.com. Check trail conditions online before you go.