At Tuxedo Ridge Ski Center, 25,000 acres of snow-dusted state-park landscape surround eight trails, inspiring riders with scenic views and mountainous sanctuary. Four double chairlifts escort skiers and snowboarders to the peaks of eight powdery slopes, which dedicated trail-sculptors and snowmaking machines have modified to accommodate riders of all ages, abilities, and postmodernist persuasions. A beginners' area helps snowsplorers find their mountain legs, and the black-diamond racing hill and freestyle park challenge skis and boards with steep slopes, kickers, and rails. The rental shop at the bottom of the hill outfits run-tamers with downhill essentials, and a rustic lodge and pub warms bellies and thaws tongues frozen to metal poles with an array of hearty après-ski treats.
Aspiring snow-surfers can choose one of the latter deals to learn about skiing or snowboarding survival during a 60-minute group lesson, lead by one of Ski Campgaw's highly experienced staff. Afterwards, newly trained students show off their new moves in the beginner's area, where two gentle conveyor lifts can tow them back to the top of the slope. Meanwhile, more advanced skiers can challenge themselves on black diamond slopes, difficult for its steep angles and pursuing suitcase salesmen on jetpacks, while brave boarders can navigate the ramps, rails, and half pipes of the freestyle Terrain Park. See here for up-to-the minute info on conditions and trail closings.
As a state-of-the-art indoor pond, Floyd Hall Arena provides ice so smooth and true that even the Zamboni drivers can't help but purposefully get their tongues stuck to it. After strapping on their skates, all ages and skill levels can practice figural flow, hone their hockey stopping, and improve their foot-cursive penmanship. For the especially graceful, the facility also rents Olympic-quality walkers ($3, not included in this Groupon) that turn any avalanching ice princess into an upright frozen duchess. Since opening in 1998, the arena has hosted more than a dozen NHL teams and countless quantities of avid skaters young and old.
Frozen lakes, snowy hills, and warm ocean waves are transformed into arenas over which to slip and slide, thanks to the experienced instructors at Kite Club NY. During private and group lessons, they teach students how to strap into skis, snowboards, or surfboards, take the reins of a kite, and harness the wind's power. Kiteboarders learn techniques such as riding one-handed, leaping into the air, and even riding uphill.