There's nothing dull about New York snow activities or winters. Let's start with the basics.
With more than 100 ski centers across the state, it's all downhill from here on gentle slopes and imposing summits, with breathtaking scenery to match from Holiday Valley in the west, to Greek Peak in the central tier, to Belleayre in the east. Batteries of snowmaking guns guarantee the powder is there when you want it.
Drink in the views at a slower pace along miles of cross-country trails, many of them lit to stretch the short winter days. Best bets include Mount Van Hoevenberg's 31 miles of cross-country paths, Lapland Lake's Olympic skier-designed trails, and Garnet Hill Lodge's Skullbuster Hill.
These trails share one of the fastest growing snow activities-snowshoeing. Simple gear and a desire to burn calories are all you need to explore the Hudson Valley snows at Pineridge. Mohonk Mountain House in the Catskills, Fahnestock Winter Park near Carmel, and Beaver Lake Nature Center offer unforgettable snowshoe trails as well.
Why leave the family dog at home? Skijoring is a sow activity involving hooking your dog to skis for a tow through the snow, and New Englanders are taking to it in droves. It's easy and inexpensive to get started, with many ski areas beginning to open trails to the dogs.
Turbo charge your dog power with a dogsled ride. Winter resorts like Mirror Lake's Golden Arrow now offer dogsled rides on Adirondack snows pulled by trained dog teams.
True speed demons might try a plummet down Mt. Van Hoevenberg at Lake Placid's Olympic Complex, where world-class bobsled and luge tracks provide a mile-long rocket ride down a ribbon of ice at up to 5-G speeds, professional driver included.
Add some altitude on a zipline ride, flying along at 50 miles per hour with only a nylon strap between you and the scenery. Hunter Mountain's SkyRider Tour reveals 600-foot views of the Northern Catskills, while Windham Mountain offers side-by-side racing ziplines, and Hyde Park's Big Bear Ziplines are an easy drive from NYC.
Holiday Valley's Sky High Mountain Coaster offers yet another twist-a six-minute steel-rail plummet through the woods with lightning twists and dips. Don't worry, you control the speed.
Why delay your snow travels until you reach the trails? Board the Saratoga & North Creek Railway's Snow Train and whisk past breathtaking scenery in a vintage coach car on your way to skiing and adventuring in North Creek and Gore Mountain.
Beaver Lake Nature Center
Big Bear Ziplines
Fahnestock Winter Park
Garnet Hill Lodge
Lake Placid's Olympic Complex
Mohonk Mountain House
Saratoga & North Creek Railway