If New Years plans have not solidified, think about a mini-vacation at Gunstock resort, less than two hours away from Boston in New Hampshire’s lakes Region.
Special New Year events on Gunstock Mountain
Gunstock Mountain Resort has an entire bunch of special events on tap for revelers. Starting after 4PM anyone with a night lift ticket, primetime lift ticket or season pass can enjoy horsedrawn carriage rides, tubing on their special tubing hill, snow shoe tours and pick up special skiing and riding tips from the experts at the Learning Center.
Throughout the evening there will also be a number of other activities around the rustic log cabin-like base area of the mountain. Look for jugglers, face painting stations and be sure to go by the Fire Pit for S’mores. Throughout the night the Nobody's Fault Band will be playing live in the Main Lodge and a DJ will be providing music outside in the open area in front of the lodge. Childcare, in their specially built facility, will be available from 6 PM to 11PM for only $20 per child, but reservation are needed (603-737-4364)
A little bit about the mountain
For skiers and riders, the mountain has a vertical drop of 1,400 feet, 90% of which is covered by snowmaking. The mountain has 55 trails, of which beginners slopes constitute 12%, intermediate trails are 61% and black diamonds are 27%. Skiers and riders will be able to continue riding the trails after 4 PM on the nicely lighted mountain until 11PM, followed at 11:45 by a traditional skiers Torchlight Parade down the mountain culminating at midnight with a fireworks display over the mountain. The Night Lift Ticket from 4pm to 11:30pm is for $49 for adults and teens; and $39 for children and seniors. Rental equipment from 4pm to closing is $20 (and includes a helmet rental).
But make this a weekend event. The mountain has just received significant new natural snow and their top notch snow making capabilities ensure that there will always be enough snow on the open trails. As of today, Gunstock is reporting 30 of their 55 trails open and a base of 21-37 inches. For night skiing they have 12 trails. Most of the trails open are beginner and intermediate rated.
Nordic, tubing, zipping and more mountain adventures off the slopes
In addition to alpine (downhill) skiing, Gunstock has a beautiful Nordic (cross-country) skiing facility. As of today there are 32 trails open, of which 13, for a total of 25km, are skate groomed. Another popular outdoor sport at Gunstock is tubing. Several lanes of tubing are available for ticket holders who buy tubing in two hour increments. The tubing hill is conveniently located close to the base area and provides a great family experience. Also close by is the Big Air Bag (open to 10pm (Daily Flight Ticket or Pass is required). Check on site to make sure wind condition allow it to operate.
Zip-lining has also gained an immense following in recent year and Gunstock has one of the best in the country. The longest of its zip-lines is 3,981 feet and allows participants to reach speeds of up to 60 miles per hour (but only if they want to!). Gunstock ahs a total of 22 zip-lies and the zip-line tour includes 10 of them.
Getting to Gunstock Mountain Resort from Greater Boston
Gunstock has been a New England family favorite since it came to life in the late 1930s as a Civilian Conservation Corp project. Today it has just about everything that a family could want in a resort. Gunstock is easy to get to from the greater Boston area. Check their website for lodging deals and options.