New England Ski & Scuba's staff touts many years of experience, training, and personal enjoyment in the realm of winter and water sports, making the shop a trustworthy source for gear and general know-how. Inside, visitors navigate through an extensive selection of new and used equipment, apparel, and accessories from the industry's leading brands. To ensure it remains on the cutting-edge of product development, the shop communicates directly with most of those manufacturers through an intricate system of yodeling. The shop also offers repairs, tune-ups, and classes.
The Blandford Ski Area has remained a family mountain for 75 years through its commitment to education and gentle terrain. Crisscrossed with beginner and intermediate trails, the basin serves as a fertile development ground for burgeoning skiers and boarders, and a venue for après-ski live music. Children as young as age 3 practice their snowplow in the Ski with Me program, and sportfolk with energy to burn hit the terrain park or stay after sundown for night runs lit by floodlights. When natural snow runs short, machines kick into gear to slick slopes in fresh powder or the corn oil favored by the Blandford alpine racing team.
Winding Trails works to preserve natural woodlands and waterways around the Farmington area, hosting recreational activities that foster a love of the outdoors. In addition to renting out ski equipment to visitors eager to ski over scenic forest trails, the group runs outdoor adventure programs, day camps for ages 3-13, and swim lessons.
New Britain-Berlin YMCA's 90,000-square-foot complex helps members improve their lives through community programs, personal training programs, and a variety of fitness facilities, including a new massage studio. Besides bulking up on full circuit of Nautilus strength equipment or powering through Precor treadmills, steppers, and ellipticals, visitors can join friends for games of basketball in the double gymnasium or chuck tomatoes at the walls of five on-site racquetball courts. The clear waters of the 25-yard swimming pool parallel the mirrored walls of an 800-square-foot fitness studio, where members can partake in several health and wellness programs throughout the week.
The proprietor and chief guide behind Hilltown Wilderness Adventures, Marla BB, invites patrons to hitch their dreams of adventure onto the backs of her alaskan huskies for mushing, skijoring, and outdoor excursions in the Berkshires. Her hallmark attraction is mushing through both snowy hills and on dryland tracks—a unique offering for the region that has earned her attention from media outlets such as Mushing magazine and Animal Planet.
The skijoring and sled-dog school teaches novices how to captain a team of dogs either in a sled or on skis, which can give them give them a way to skip long ski-resort lift lines. Marla also leads day excursions through DAR State Forest, Chesterfield Gorge and Westfield River, and the Deerfield River Watershed, keeping bikers, hikers, kayakers, and bird watchers safe as she is a certified wilderness first responder and an expert in swift-water safety and rescue.
Mount Southington Ski Area sprung from a dream. In the 1960s, its rolling mountainside contained not ski trails, but dairy cows, most of whom couldn't even snowboard. But then new owners bought the dairy farm with the hopes of creating their own slopes. In 1964, the park officially opened, launching 50 years of athletic achievements and family memories.
Today, an old red barn?converted into a ski shop and caf??echoes the mountain's past. Outside, the park's 51 acres are covered with snow, thanks to the combined efforts of Mother Nature and artificial snowmakers. Four chair lifts, a handle tow, and two carpet lifts ferry visitors up this mountainside, where they can soar down 14 different trails during the day or under the night's twinkling stars. The snowy routes come in three levels of difficulty, and young skiers can learn the basics at The Glacier training area. Snowboarders can face the rails, boxes, and other exciting elements sprawl across two terrain parks. PSIA-certified instructors are on standby for advanced lessons, and athletes of all ages can rent equipment from the rental department. Mount Southington Ski Area is located off I-84 exit 30.