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Winter Wonderland: The Best Skiing Near Bethesda

While there may not be any snow around here, local ski resorts have plenty of powder ready for the shushing.

Except for the past few days, the weather in the area has been so mild that many people have continued to enjoy warmer weather leisure activities.

But with the biting cold, thoughts are turning to shushing down the slopes of powdery snow.

There are 20 ski resorts within a four-hour drive of Washington, DC, with activities ranging from traditional skiing to snowboarding, tubing, sledding and much more.

The DCSki website lists Carroll Valley, PA'sLiberty Mountain as the closest ski spot, just a 1-hour, 35-minute drive from the nation's capital. Liberty offers 16 trails, eight chairlifts and 14 snow tubing lanes to handle 13,400 skiers per hour.

Mercersburg, PA's Whitetail Resort is only 10 minutes farther away, and it recently celebrated its 20th anniversary. Whitetail has 23 trails, a high-speed quad chairlift and a 935-foot vertical.

Virginia's Wintergreen Resort is just under three hours from the area and offers visitors great views of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Wintergreen has 26 slopes for experts and beginners alike, plus a half-pipe for snowboarders.

If you are closer to the western side of the state, Canaan Valley in Davis, WV, may be a good choice. It offers a number of slopes, including some for glade skiing (downhill skiing through wooded areas, or off-trail) as well as snow tubing and airboarding, which is like body-boarding in the ocean.

For those a bit more adventurous, Sugar Mountain in Banner Elk, NC, is the largest ski resort south of West Virgina, and boasts a 1,200-foot vertical in the resort's 115 acres of skiing and snowboarding trails.

JTS53 January 25, 2013 at 01:41 PM
With Corridor H (Route 48) now open most of the way to WV, Canaan Valley and Timberline are three hours from the Beltway & 66. Due to its elevation, the snow is almost always good and well worth the drive from DC. Nearby Davis and Thomas, WV have some good restaurants and brewpubs.

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