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Canaan Valley Resort, WV

Airboarding at Canaan Valley Resort. Photo courtesy Canaan Valley Resort.

Hit the slopes at Canaan Valley Resort and enjoy the view of the East’s biggest alpine valley (13 by 3 miles), nestled at 3,200 feet, with surrounding mountains rising above 4,200 feet.

“You’re in a complete mecca of all winter activities,” says Jessica Scowcroft, marketing manager at the Tucker County Convention and Visitors Bureau. She ticks off the list: downhill skiing, snowboarding, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, hiking and two Canaan Valley Resort specials: airboarding and an ice skating rink.

The publicly owned mountain was the first in the country to introduce airboarding – like tubing but on inflatable sleds that are more maneuverable and faster – in 2006. In addition, Canaan Valley Resort and neighbor Timberline have a Ski the Valley pass, which gives you access to 76 slopes within five miles of each other.

This winter playground, in a county where state parks outnumber traffic lights, is brought to you by mother nature: “We get 160 to 200 inches of snow (per season),” Jessica says. Yes, it will be cold, but no worries: plenty of dining, drinking and live music options will keep you in play mode all weekend.

Where it’s at: About 3½ hours from Pittsburgh; from I-79 and I-68 in Morgantown, WV, take I-68 E to MD 42 south for about 8 miles to US 219 south for about 26 miles to WV 32 south through Davis, WV. Continue south through the valley 10 miles until you see the signs for Canaan Valley Resort.

Contact: or 800-622-4121

Digs: Winter camping at Canaan Valley State Park runs $18.50/night; rooms in the lodge run $91-$169/night; state park cabins are $114/night and up,

Grub: There are a number of slopeside dining options; the Valley View Grill’s menu items are all $10 or less,

Gear and outfitting: Highland Prospects in nearby Davis, or (304) 259-5656

Cost: Regular season adult lift tickets run from $30/half day to $53/day, stay and ski packages start at $69; airboarding session and rental starts at $35; tubing is $15-$20; adult cross-country and snowshoe rentals are $20 with no trail fees