Mid-Atlantic skiing daytrips from DC

A skier looks down a foggy slope at Timberline Resort in West Virginia

I love to ski, but I don’t get out as much as I’d like. Over the last decade or so, I have written about my experiences as a “commuter skier” in the Mid-Atlantic. I typically get in 1 or 2 daytrips a season and the intention here is to help others in situations make that one trip count.

Winter 2020-2021 will be atypical as everything is during the COVID-19 pandemic.  I won’t be surprised if some ski areas don’t even open. Those that do will be using an online reservation system.

Since 2007, I have been writing firsthand reports of my ski trips on my blog. I have also been posting ski news of interest

Mid-Atlantic Skiing map

I have skied many of these places and profiled a number of them as well.

Remember, don’t hate winter, use it!

Latest skiing coverage

Don’t count on skiing in 2020-2021 season

My skepticism for a Mid-Atlantic ski season keeps growing. While skiing itself is pretty safe, it’s getting from the bottom of the mountain that’s not.…

DCSki redesign launched

The Mid-Atlantic’s premier independent snow sports site is redesigned.The Washington, D.C. area-based DCSki provides news, resort profiles & forums.

West Virginia 4th & 5th grade ski pass on sale

Discounted skiing for  4th and 5th graders is available for $35, plus tax for administrative fees, from the West Virginia Ski Association: For the 2020/2021 season Winterplace,…

No 4th & 5th grade Pennsylvania snow pass this season

The Pennsylvania Ski Areas Association will not offer their 4th and 5th grades snow pass for the 2020-2021 season. Due to our current inability to…

Skiing: 2020-2021 Indy Pass now on sale

UPDATE: Indy Pass Adds 11 Additional Independent Ski Areas for 2020-’21 Season – Ski MagazineMid-Atlantic ski areas are planning on opening for the 2020-2021 season.…

Can there be a 2020-2021 ski season?

How Ski Resorts Hope to Operate Under COVID-19 This Winter – New York MagazineYou will be forgiven if the next winter sports season isn’t top…
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Pow(d)er rankings

While I encourage you to read all of my recaps of skiing in the Mid-Atlantic or visiting the map page, the TL;DR format is provided too:

Ski area Rating Visits TL;DR
Big Boulder, Poconos, Pa. 17 My two semesters of college phys-ed were here, so I have a soft spot for it, but since then it’s been turned into a snowboard park and apparently a good one. If I had a month of ski days in a season, I’d take a day there since the bordercross runs are fun. SkiTheEast was there the year before.
Blue Knob, Claysburg, Pa. 1 Rustic, prone to ice and not as big as they claim, but get a little bit of fresh snow and it’s a really fun mountain that I really want to visit again. It’s also an inverted lodge (on top of the mountain) despite being the highest skiable elevation in Pennsylvania. They are on the Indy Pass now, but badly need some new snow-making infrastructure or big storms..
Blue Mountain, Palmerton, Pa. 1 My grade is a bit incomplete since it was a spontaneous trip in March one year, but I think it’s worth a second look. The vertical drop is amongst the best in Pennsylvania. The touchscreens instead of paper forms in the registration area would be welcome everywhere.
Camelback, Poconos, Pa.   5 The biggest ski area in the Poconos has over 30 trails and is very popular, perhaps too popular. I have lots of great memories here, but its a bit far for over 800 feet of vertical and huge crowds on holiday weekends. It’s all interstate highways to get there though.
Elk Mountain, Poconos, Pa.   1 The northernmost ski area in Northeast Pennsylvania, Elk is a “skiers mountain” with quality cruisers and short lift lines not far from I-81 past Scranton.
Jack Frost, Poconos, Pa. 1 Inverted, small and probably a good choice for younger skiers, but again, kind of far from DC. Biggest plus — shared passed with Big Boulder, so you can ski two hills in one day.
Massanutten, Harrisonburg, Va. ■■ 1 It’s small, hence Massa-nothin’, but the black diamond runs are really fun and the scenery is stunning. The Poconos, it ain’t. I had my best day of skiing here, right after the Pitchers and Catchers Day Storm in 2014. Another one I want to get back again.
Timberline, Davis, W.V. ⚰️ 1 Even in 2013, it was in decline, but perhaps the new owners will fix it, reopen it for 2021.
Whitetail, Mercersburg, Pa. ■■ 9 The elevation is under 2000 feet, but is over 900 feet of vertical drop. At only 90 minutes from the Capital Beltway, it’s an excellent option for D.C. commuter skiers. It’s been well-run, but moves its third owner in as many seasons

William’s Mid-Atlantic skiing coverage

Twitter list

Remember when twitter lists were a thing? I have a fairly extensive one for mid-Atlantic skiing and a little more (it scrolls forever):