Regional Winter Activities
Skiing & Riding
Take time to enjoy some of the best Adirondack Coast skiing and riding with great snow, spectacular views and fun ski activities. Enjoy resort skiing in the Adirondacks and experience the thrill of the greatest vertical drop in the east.
Cross Country Skiing & Snowshoeing
When the temperature drops everything here says winter - and this couldn't be truer than for the Adirondack Nordic skier and snowshoe enthusiast. Enjoy an extensive network of Adirondack backcountry trails, both groomed and natural, in the spectacular Adirondack Mountains.
Experience the Adirondack Coast full throttle. With thousands of miles of Adirondack snowmobile trails there is no better way to explore winter's white landscape than on a sled.
Find some of the best Adirondack ice fishing on Lake Champlain as it turns into a community unto itself. Experience an Adirondack tradition as colorful ice shanties begin to populate the white landscape in late December catching an array of fish.
Travel back in time and listen to the sleigh bells ring with Adirondack Sleigh Rides. Pulled by a team of Belgian draft horses enjoy sleigh bells, draft harnesses with silver trim and a sleigh decorated with balsam fir all while surrounded by rolling hills, snow covered lanes and the Adirondack Mountains making for the perfect winter wonderland backdrop.
For more information on attractions around the Aidrondack Coast please call 518.563.1000 or visit www.goadirondack.com.
Sports & Outdoors
The six-million-acre Adirondack Park offers a vast selection of outdoor adventures-from fishing and kayaking to rock climbing-on both public and private lands with thousands of lakes, streams and mountain trails. Places to stay range from wilderness campsites and rustic cabins, to four-star luxury resorts.
Camping: The six-million-acre park offers thousands of campsites and more than 150 campgrounds-from state-owned and operated, to private campgrounds with family friendly amenities. RV camping is possible throughout the region.
The amazing range of camping experiences goes from primitive camping in the Adirondack Wild to glamour camping, called "glamping." Guests can hire a licensed guide to cater to their every whim in the wilderness; enjoy a massage by the lake, gourmet meals and even nightly entertainment. For a more rustic experience, stay at the Adirondak Loj & Wilderness Campground, which is adjacent to High Peaks trail heads. Unique island campsites are found on the Lake George, Indian Lake, and Saranac Lake islands.
Hunting: Private preserves and game farms are found throughout the region. State lands are open for hunting during the appropriate seasons. Find license and other information at The Adirondacks' regional website and http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/7844.html
Winter Sports: Nearly a dozen ski areas offer a wide range of downhill skiing and snowboarding opportunities-from family friendly to expert-only. Ski down the backcountry slides or on the greatest vertical drop east of the Rockies, at Whiteface Lake Placid in Wilmington. Known as the Olympic Mountain, Whiteface hosted the 1932 and 1980 Winter Olympic Games alpine events. Family-friendly ski areas include Big Tupper Ski Center in Tupper Lake, Gore Mountain in North Creek, West Mountain in Queensbury, and Snow Ridge in Turin, which benefits from Great Lake Ontario's lake-effect snow. Visitors can take lessons at one of the many ski resorts. Many ski areas also offer cross-country ski and snowshoe trails. State parks in the region offer ice-skating, ice-fishing, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing and snowmobiling.
Zipline Adventures: In Bolton Landing, the forested Adirondack Extreme Adventure Course features giant zip lines, suspended cable bridges, Tarzan jumps, nets and ladders.
Five Rivers Environmental Education Center- New Scotland (Albany County)
Phone: (518) 402-8013
Each winter, thousands travel to this treasured nature center near Albany to hike, snowshoe or cross-country ski around its more than 450 acres of snowy fields, towering trees, icy streams and frozen ponds. Guided and self-guided tours take you through scenic natural settings, where encounters with fascinating wild creatures are a routine occurrence.
Hike or ski on more than 10 miles of trails at Five Rivers. The center lends snowshoes to adults and children in learn-to-snowshoe programs. The casual visitor may also rent snowshoes for use on the grounds.
Surface: Woodchips, gravel and asphalt (when not snow covered)
Wildlife and Natural Attractions: As you explore Five Rivers in winter, you'll see many species of overwintering birds, even bluebirds! Mammals, like white-tailed deer, squirrels and cottontail rabbits, are also common sights.
Nearby Attractions: Albany Pine Bush Preserve
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Fishing: Washington Counties, the Battenkill is a nationally-recognized trout stream. Anglers can choose from nearly 50 lakes to fish for bass, trout, perch, and walleye. There are fishing tournaments in almost every season. During ice-fishing season, the annual Walleye Challenge on the Great Sacandaga Lake welcoming 1500 enthusiasts is held in January.
Hunting: Some state lands are open for hunting during the appropriate seasons. Find license and other information at Capital-Saratoga's regional website or http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/7844.html
Scenic Train Rides
Trains offer nostalgic trips through some of New York's most striking scenery. The new Saratoga/North Creek line runs along the Hudson River, from Saratoga Springs to the Adirondacks.
Winter Sports: Downhill ski areas include Maple Ski Ridge, Royal Mountain and Willard Mountain. Pineridge XC Ski Area, in Postenkill, and Tree Haven Trails in Galway offer miles of groomed cross-country ski and snowshoe trails. State parks throughout the region offer ice-skating, ice-fishing, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing and snowmobiling.
Willowemoc Wild Forest - Livingston Manor (Sullivan County)
Phone: (845) 256-3000
Lose yourself in the natural beauty of the rolling hills and forest in this southwest corner of the Catskill Park, especially when the landscape is coated with snow. Enjoy more than 40 miles of trails on foot, cross-country skis or snowshoes, and take time to visit picturesque Wanetka Lake. Long Pond Trail is particularly good for youngsters and beginners, and the foot trails from the Frick Pond trailhead are especially suited to cross-country skiing.
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Camping: More than 50 beautiful public and private campgrounds are found throughout the region. North-South Lake State Park, the biggest state park and campground in the Catskill Preserve, offers hiking, swimming, fishing and kayaking amid magnificent views.
Hunting: Private preserves and game farms are found throughout the region. State lands are open for hunting during the appropriate seasons. Find license and other information at The Catskills' regional website and http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/7844.html.
Hiking: Hundreds of miles of multi-use trails lead through spectacular landscapes-up mountain paths, around lakes, beside waterfalls and through historic villages. Climbing the 35 Catskill high peaks is a lofty goal for many hikers. The 19-mile Catskill Scenic Trail, with a gentle grade, is ideal for hiking, biking or horseback riding. Trails at Sam's Point Preserve, on 5,000 acres in the Shawangunk Mountains, feature expansive views, waterfalls and ice caves.
Scenic Train Rides: Historic train rides run through some of New York's most striking scenery. The Catskill Mountain Railroad in Phoenicia, and the Delaware & Ulster in Arkville, feature open-air cars and themed trips such as wine tasting and reenactments of train robberies.
Winter Sports: Downhill ski areas include Hunter, Windham, Plattekill, and Villa Roma mountain resorts, as well as ski centers at Belleayre Mountain, Holiday Mountain and Plattekill Mountain. Many ski areas also offer cross-country ski and snowshoe trails. In Tannersville, Mountain Trails XC Ski Center has over 35 marked and groomed trails.
Zipline Adventures: Windham Mountain, a popular Catskills ski resort, has a year-round Adventure Park featuring a side-by-side racing zipline. The New York Zipline Adventure Tour at Hunter Mountain is the longest and highest zipline in North America. Kittatinny Canoes & Rafts in Barryville features a 3,000-foot zipline that overlooks the Delaware River.
State Parks: State parks include North-South Lake State Park, popular for camping and swimming; Bear Spring Mountain State Park, with 24 miles of trails for horseback riding, mountain biking, hiking, snowmobiling and cross-country skiing; and Lake Superior State Park, with swimming, boating, fishing and boat rentals. -
Scenic Byways: The Upper Delaware Scenic Byway runs along the river to dramatic vistas and unique attractions such as the Catskill Fly Fishing Center.
CENTRAL NEW YORK
Sports & Outdoors
Fishing: State parks such as Chittenango Falls State Park and Delta Lake State Park offer fishing and boat launches. Oneida Lake is also popular for fishing and boating as it is one of the top bass and walleye fisheries in all of New York State.
Hunting: Private preserves and game farms are found throughout the region. State lands are open for hunting during the appropriate seasons. Find information at Central New York's regional website and http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/7844.html.
Winter Sports: Downhill ski centers include Val Bialas and Woods Valley. Cross-country ski and snowshoe trails abound at country inns such as Alder Creek Country Inn, State Parks such as Gilbert Lake and Glimmerglass, nature centers, and the Osceola Tug Hill XC Ski Center.
Nature Centers: Landis Arboretum, a 200-acre garden in Esperance, has hiking trails concerts and classes. Nature lovers can take a walk in the tropics at the Joseph Popp Butterfly Conservatory in Oneonta. Trails amid 600 acres at Rogers Environmental Education Center in Sherburne are ideal for birdwatching and hiking. The Great Swamp Conservancy in Canastota, is designated as an Important Birding Area by the National Audubon Society.
State Parks: Scenic parks include Chittenango Falls State Park, with hiking, fishing and picnicking beside a 167-foot cascading waterfall; Delta Lake State Park and Verona Beach State park, both with sandy beaches, boat launch, fishing, camping and nature trails; and Glimmerglass State Park, with camping, hiking trails and swimming in Otsego Lake.
Scenic Byways: Historic Route 20 Scenic Byway, highlighting roadside Americana, leads to charming villages, country inns and farm markets.
Canadaway Creek Wildlife Management Area - Arkwright (Chautauqua County)
Phone: (716) 372-0645
The only sounds to break the silence of the winter woods as you trek through Canadaway Creek Wildlife Management Area will be rushing water in icy tributaries and the whoosh of your skis through the snow. Canadaway is more than 2,000 acres of dense hardwood and evergreen forest in western New York. Its steep slopes and meadows are quickly covered in a thick blanket of white as frequent snow squalls race eastward off the Great Lakes.
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Camping: The region offers more than 40 campgrounds-from state-owned and operated, to private campgrounds with family friendly amenities. Allegany State Park features hundreds of cabins and campsites, many on the water. For spectacular views, pitch a tent on the high bluffs at Lake Erie State Park. RV camping is possible throughout the region.
Hunting: Private preserves and game farms are found throughout the region. Some state lands are open for hunting during the appropriate seasons. Find license and other information at Chautauqua-Allegheny's regional website or http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/7844.html
Hiking/Horseback Riding: Allegany State Park offers miles of paved and natural trails throughout 65,000 aces for hiking, biking and horseback riding. Hike amid towering rock formations at Panama Rocks Scenic Park, or follow meandering trails around 250 monumental sculptures at Griffis Sculpture Park, a 400-acre nature preserve.
Winter Sports: Ski areas, including Cockaigne, Holiday Valley Resort, HoliMont Resort, Peek'n Peak Resort, and Swain Resort, offer a wide range of downhill skiing and snowboarding opportunities. Holiday Valley, HoliMont, Peek'n Peak, and the Art Roscoe XC Ski offer great cross-country ski and snowshoe trails. State parks such as Allegany offer ice-skating, ice-fishing, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing and snowmobiling.
Zipline Adventures/Mountain Coaster: In Ellicottville, the Sky High Adventure Park at Holiday Valley Resort is a four-acre aerial park with ziplines and bridges made from logs, obstacles and ladders. Mountain coaster rides zigzag, spiral and whoosh down the mountain.
Montezuma Audubon Center
Phone: (315) 365-3588
Snowshoe At the Montezuma Audubon Center! Ready for some outdoor adventure? Try snowshoeing at the Montezuma Audubon Center! Snowshoes are available for rent. Costs: $5 adults & $3 children.
The 5,200-squre-foot facility offers year-round environmental education programs, exhibits and presentations. The MAC houses a large exhibit area, nature store, auditorium, meeting room, classroom and office area. On its 198-acres, there are five types of habitat, two restored freshwater marshes, two-miles of trails, and an all-access observation platform. Canoes, kayaks, and snowshoes are available to access the heart of Montezuma's wetlands, forests, and grasslands. Other recreational opportunities include nature photography, cross-country skiing, fishing, picnicking, wildlife viewing, and hiking.
Connecticut Hill Wildlife Management Area (WMA) - Catherine and Enfield (Schuyler and Tompkins counties)
Phone: (315) 426-7403
Hike, snowshoe or cross-country ski to the top of Connecticut Hill and enjoy commanding views of the lowlands below from one of the highest points in the beautiful Finger Lakes region of Central New York. Connecticut Hill is part of the Appalachian Highlands and lies within a belt of high, rugged land.
Rattlesnake Hill Wildlife Management Area (WMA) - Dansville (Livingston County)
Phone: (585) 226-2466
You'll enjoy the ever-changing scenery as you ski or snowshoe through mature woodland, overgrown fields, conifer plantations, old-growth apple orchards and open meadows on this part of the Genesee Valley Greenway Trail. Don't miss one especially scenic route that enters the WMA from the intersection of Dannack Hill and Ebert.
Shop ‘til you drop
There are abundant shopping centers and boutiques throughout the Greater Syracuse area to keep you busy for days! From the bountiful boutiques in Armory Square (and the first national retailer, Urban Outfitters) to three malls and several shopping centers - you're shopping options are endless. And be sure to save time for the Waterloo Premium Outlets, located just a short 30 minute drive west on the New York State Thruway. Spend a few hours away from the cold temperatures and falling snow and treat yourself to a shopping excursion.
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Boating/Fishing: With many rivers, streams and canals connecting each Finger Lake to Great Lake Ontario, the region is a haven for boating and sport fishing. Kayaking is popular as well. The Chemung River is part of a recreational waterway called the Chemung Basin River Trail, which links with a network of water trails that ultimately flow into the Chesapeake Bay. The New York State Fish Hatchery in Bath produces close to 1,000,000 fish each year, specializing in brown trout, rainbow trout, and lake trout.
Hunting: Private preserves and game farms are found throughout the region. Finger Lakes National Forest and State lands are open for hunting during the appropriate seasons. Find license and other information at The Finger Lake's regional website and http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/7844.html.
Winter Sports: Downhill ski areas include Bristol, Greek Peak and Labrador Mountain resorts as well as Brantling, Four Seasons, Hunt Hollow, and Song ski centers. Many cross-country ski and snowshoe trails are found throughout the region in resorts and parks such as Beaver Lake and Cumming nature centers, Greek Peak Mountain Resort and Highland Forest County Park.
Nature Centers: Nature lovers have many choices including the Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge in Seneca Falls, the Lime Hollow Nature Center in Cortland, the Sapsucker Woods Bird Sanctuary at Cornell University in Ithaca, and the Cumming Nature Center in Naples.
State Parks/National Forest: State parks ideal for hiking, biking and camping include Watkins Glen, with its deep gorges and 19 waterfalls; Taughannock, where the waters drop 400 feet; Letchworth, known as the Grand Canyon of the East; and Chimney Bluffs, towering above Lake Ontario. Finger Lakes National Forest, on a ridge between Seneca and Cayuga Lakes, offers many recreational activities.
Scenic Byways: The picturesque Cayuga Lake Scenic Byway runs from Ithaca to the Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge near Seneca Falls. The Great Lakes Seaway Trail runs through this region, along Lake Ontario, offering many activities from bird-watching to waterskiing.
Reinstein Woods Nature Preserve and Environmental Education Center - Depew (Erie County)
Phone: (716) 683-5959
Reinstein Woods is known as "Buffalo's Backyard Wilderness", and its trails traverse nearly 300 wooded acres of snowy forest, frozen ponds and marshes adorned in lacy hoarfrost. It's easy to forget you're surrounded by suburban neighborhoods.
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Boat Tours: Narrated cruises range from quiet canal tours ideal for birdwatching and wildlife viewing, to the thrilling Maid of the Mist ride up to the base of the American Falls and the wildly exciting Whirlpool Jet Boat Tour.
Fishing: Two Great Lakes, Lake Erie and Lake Ontario, as well as the lower Niagara River are touted as some of North America's best places for trophy fishing (steelhead, bass, trout, salmon, walleye pike and more). Fishing tournaments draw anglers from around the globe. The region also offers excellent fly-fishing spring through fall on scenic Oatka Creek in the quaint village of LeRoy.
Hunting: Private preserves and game farms are found throughout the region. The Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge allows hunting and fishing in season with permits. State lands are open for hunting during the appropriate seasons. Find information at Greater Niagara's regional website and http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/7844.html.
Winter Sports: Downhill ski centers include Buffalo Ski Club and Kissing Bridge, each within a half-hour's drive of Buffalo. Snow-tubers love the giant downhill tubing park adjacent to Kissing Bridge, the Colden Tubing Company and Polarwave Snowtubing Park in Batavia featuring chutes of all sizes. Cross-country ski trails crisscross the region, from Byrncliff Resort to Letchworth State Park. Other winter sports in Letchworth Park include snowshoeing and ice-skating.
Nature Centers: At the Aquarium of Niagara, a few blocks from Niagara Falls, sea lions perform, penguins play, sharks feed, and harbor seals interact with trainers year-round. The Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge, New York State's largest wildlife refuge, has hiking and canoeing through diverse habitats and Bald Eagle watching.
State Parks: Magnificent state parks include Niagara Falls State Park; Silver Lake State Park, with boating and fishing on the pristine lake; Woodlawn Beach State Park, where a one-mile natural sand beach offers panoramic views of Lake Erie; Darien Lake State Park, ranked as one of America's Top 100 Family Campgrounds' by ReserveAmerica; and Letchworth State Park, known as the Grand Canyon of the East.-
Harness Racing Museum & Hall of Fame
Phone: (845) 294-6330
Drive a sulky to the finish line in the 3-D simulator. Riveting state-of-the-art and interactive exhibits. Call and judge a race. Theaters tell the fascinating history of America's first sport. Home of the largest collection of Currier & Ives trotting prints. Changing art exhibits. Group tours, conference and private party facilities. Fully handicap accessible. Daily 10-5. VISITOR INFORMATION CENTER.
Phone: (845) 986-4940 or 986-4992
Mount Peter is a spectacular NY ski and snowboard mountain located in Warwick, New York, the heart of the Hudson Valley in Orange County, and is just an hour from New York City and even closer to most northern and central NJ towns. Offering so much to experience, like our famous Free Beginner Ski and Snowboard Mountain School for taking ski and snowboard lessons, our great snowmaking and expert grooming, an awesome terrain park, our top-notch alpine racing and skiing development programs. Mount Peter has something for every visitor, a playground for all ages.
Thomas Bull Memorial Park
Phone: (845) 457-4949
Groomed lanes with rope tow. Specially designed tubes. Stadium lights for evening sessions. Lodge with restaurant, bar, stone fireplace and scenic views of the Shawangunk Mountains. Adjacent facilities for cross-country skiing, sledding and ice skating. Fri night, Sat & Sun, and school holidays in season.
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Fishing: State parks such as Bear Mountain, Harriman and Lake Taghkanic, as well as many of the region's more than 30 campgrounds and preserves offer fishing and boat launches. Guide services can help you find the best fishing spots.
Hunting: Although most famous for antique hunting, the Hudson Valley also has several hunting preserves and sporting clays, hunting guide services, and state parks and forests open for hunting turkey, large and small game, and coyote during the appropriate seasons. Find license and other information at Hudson Valley's regional website or http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/7844.html
Winter Sports: Downhill ski areas include Catamount, Sawkill Family Center, Thunder Ridge and Tuxedo Ridge. Rocking Horse Ranch also features downhill and cross-country skiing. Fahnestock Winter Park, Minnewaska State Park Preserve, and the Mohonk Mountain House in New Paltz have cross-country ski and snowshoe trails. Other parks throughout the region offer ice-skating, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing and snowmobiling.
Zipline Adventures: Big Bear Zip Lines in Hyde Park let you fly through the woodlands at 30mph, climb fire truck ladders, swoop down Tarzan vines, and take in amazing views.
Nature Centers: Several nature centers in the region include the Bear Mountain Trailside Museum & Wildlife Center at Bear Mountain State Park and the Mohonk Preserve, a sanctuary in the Shawangunk Mountains.
Scenic Byways: The 88-mile Shawangunk Mountains Scenic Byway winds through the Shawangunks, a paradise for hikers, rock climbers and other outdoor enthusiasts. Towns and villages along the trail blend historic sites with restaurants and shops, including a thriving population of artisan studios.
Sports & Outdoors
Fishing: Montauk Point boasts some of the world's best surf fishing. Special events at Montauk Point State Park include fishing tournaments. Many deep-sea fishing charters and excursions set off from Long Island.
Hockey: Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, a 16,000-seat arena in Uniondale is the home of the New York Islanders National Hockey League team.
Horseback Riding: Saddle-up for a ride on the beach at Deep Hollow, a 350-year-old working cattle ranch. Living history tours via horse-drawn wagons.
Horseracing: Belmont Park racetrack, in Elmont, hosts Thoroughbred racing and the famous Belmont Stakes.
Long Island Aquarium & Exhibition Center (Riverhead). Named a Top 10 Aquarium for children by Parents magazine. Open year round: over 100 indoor and outdoor exhibits and interactive experiences.
Long Island Game Farm Wildlife & Children's Zoo (Manorville). Exotic to domestic animals include a giraffe, red kangaroos, kinkajous, cougars, peacocks, lemurs, monkeys, zebras, camels and alligators. Nature trails, petting zoo, pony rides.
Sweetbriar Nature Center, on 54 acres in Smithtown. Wildlife and hundreds of plant species. Hiking trails, butterfly house, gardens, birdwatching.
Theodore Roosevelt Nature Center (Jones Beach State Park). Birdwatching and other local wildlife viewing along scenic trails.
Scenic Byways: The North Fork Trail scenic byway runs past wineries, farmland and lighthouses, from Southold to Orient Point on the Atlantic Ocean.
State Parks: At Montauk Point State Park, one of Montauk's five state parks, visitors can fish, swim, hike the nature trails or simply relax and watch the seals on the rocks offshore. Climb the lighthouse commissioned by George Washington in 1792, for a spectacular view. Park events include fishing tournaments.
Phone: 1-800-248-4FUN (4386)
When you ride through the pristine trails in Oswego County, you can't help but take in some of the stunning scenery around you - some say this is one of the very best parts of choosing this region for your trip into the wild. You can ride the famous Tug Hill Plateau for panoramic views of the winter wonderland surrounding you, or visit the Salmon River Falls to stare in awe at the magnificent glacial ice hanging in mid air.
Time your ride just right and catch a stunning sunset overlooking the Salmon River Reservoir or Sandy Pond on Lake Ontario. On your journey over and through Oswego County, soak in the scenic views at Selkirk State Park, and observe deer and other wildlife frolicking in the serene Happy Valley Wildlife Management Area.
No matter which direction you take in Oswego County, you're bound to be taken aback by the bountiful nature surrounding you in all its frosty glory.
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Fishing: Anglers come from around the world for trophy-sized catches and fishing derbies on Lake Ontario, the St. Lawrence River and smaller tributaries throughout the region year-round, including great ice-fishing in winter.
Hunting: State lands, including wildlife management areas, state forests and state parks are open for hunting during the appropriate seasons. Find information at http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/7844.html.
Nature Centers: The Minna Anthony Common Nature Center is one of the largest nature centers in the state park system. Wildlife sightings include Bald Eagles and water birds such as osprey that nest in the park.
Winter Sports: In the Snowbelt, east of Lake Ontario, lake-effect snow covers the Tug Hill Plateau with an annual average of 300 inches. At its edge, Winona State Forest has over 30 miles of nature trails and unplowed roads ideal for snowmobiling, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing and even dog-sledding. Dry Hill Ski Area just outside Watertown has ski and snowboarding trails open day and night, and a fantastic snowtubing center.
Named one of the Top 9 Great American Drives by Budget Travel, the Great Lakes Seaway Trail leads to historic lighthouses, unique museums and great outdoor activities from bird-watching to scuba diving.