skiing rochester bristol mountain

The 16 Best Places for Downhill and Cross-Country Skiing Around Rochester

skiing rochester bristol mountain

You’ll find that many of these ski-destinations offer both downhill and cross-country ski rentals, as well snowshoes. Skiing is as much winter recreation as it is a social experience, competition, and a tradition.

Plus, skiing around Rochester is great exercise and the perfect way to keep a little vitamin-D in your life.

Cumming Nature Center pine alley
Cumming Nature Center

Going to a resort will provide you with all the amenities you’d expect for the price tag: a shop with rental and repair services, lessons, support for adaptive snow sports, lifts, lodges, food, entertainment, childcare services, and lots and lots of people.

One even has an indoor water park. You also get manicured slopes, making it possible to ski when natural snow may not be on the ground elsewhere.

Taking your cross-country skis to a Monroe County Park, New York State Park, or renting them from a nature center is more of a rustic, simple and inexpensive experience.

Mendon Ponds Park Monroe County XC Skiing snow sports
Skiing at Mendon

Cross-Country Skiing Around Rochester

Ski rentals available:

  1. Bryncliff Resort Varysburg
  2. Podunk Cross Country Ski Center Ithaca
  3. Reinstein Woods and Nature Preserve Depew
  4. Cumming Nature Center Naples

Cross-country ski rentals and trails are also available at many of the downhill ski resorts below.

Cross-Country Skiing Around Rochester

Bring your own skis:

  1. Turning Point Park
  2. Monroe County Parks
  3. New York State Parks Within a 2-hour Drive
  4. Nature Centers, Wildlife Preserves, Management Areas, Refuges, and Observatories

Here’s a little inspiration from the NYS DEC,

“Don’t let snow keep you off New York State’s thousands of trails this winter. Grab a pair of cross-country skis or snowshoes and enjoy your favorite trails all winter long. The solitude and all engulfing silence of the wilderness in winter await.

“Many trails are actually easier to traverse in winter as the rocks, roots, and mud are covered over with nothing but smooth, deep snow. You can go to areas otherwise not accessible in summer due to wet conditions and take short cuts across frozen lakes.

“You may be surprised that a day of exercise and exploring nature in winter could be so much fun!”

skiing rochester bristol mountain
Bristol Mountain

Downhill Snowboarding and Skiing Around Rochester

  1. Swain & Monroe County Parks (Powder Mills and Northampton) are equipped with a gradual ski slope accessed by a single rope tow, an on-site lodge, rental equipment, and experienced ski and snowboard instructors.
  2. Swain Resort Swain
  3. Bristol Mountain Bristol
  4. Hunt Hollow Ski Club Naples
  5. Brantling Ski & Snowboard Sodus
  6. Greek Peak Cortland
  7. Holiday Valley Ellicottville
  8. Kissing Bridge Glenwood

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Do you have a favorite place to ski or snowboard?

Your insights and experiences are valuable. Please share them in the comments.

Debi Bower, Day Trips Around Rochester NY

Debi Bower is the founder and creative director of and author of the book Day Trips Around Rochester, New York.


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