Punxsutawney Phil, the world’s most famous groundhog, saw his shadow. That means his Groundhog Day forecast calls for six more weeks of winter. This is good news for families who love to participate in winter sports and have their day in the snow. Michigan, New Hampshire and Wisconsin are all great destinations for winter family vacations. So, bundle up your sense of adventure, welcome the chill in the air and enjoy your favorite winter activities. Because the colder the weather, the warmer the memories.
With monikers like the “Mitten State” and “Winter Water Wonderland,” it’s not surprising that Michigan is home to a flurry of cold-weather adventures the whole family can enjoy. Among the most popular is skiing. This is the home of Boyne Falls, after all, the Midwest’s largest ski area. But before you make your way to Boyne Mountain to swoosh down the slopes, get yourself in gear at Boyne Country Sports. Whether you’re renting or buying ski equipment, you’ll find everything you need from poles and goggles to helmets. Experts will be happy to recommend the right ski boot and make sure they’re a proper fit for every member of the family. Having the right fit is crucial in preventing injury—because boots that fit properly won’t allow your ankles to twist or bend. Now get out there and head down the mountain.
Looking for more excitement during a winter family vacation? Strap yourself on a zip line and fly over the frozen countryside. It’s a great way to feel the surge of adrenaline rush past the tip of your icy nose.
Nonstop New Hampshire
Dashing through the snow is a lot more fun when you can do it on a 120-horsepower sled. Rent a snowmobile from SledVentures then make tracks on a guided or private tour. Half- and full-day rentals are available along with expert instruction. Guides love to provide details about safely handling these awesome machines just as much as they love riding them. All snowmobiles are modern, well maintained and come equipped with reverse gear, hand warmers and electric starters for ease and convenience. Exciting, fast-paced adventures take place on Bog Pond or in Franconia Notch Park.
New Hampshire is also home to the alpine ski areas, cross-country ski trails, snowshoeing, snowboarding, tubing, ice skating and sleigh rides of Loon Mountain and Cannon Mountain. Sweeten your winter family vacation with some fresh maple syrup. Maple tree sap flows from mid-February to mid-April. Tap into a good time at one of the many sugarhouses and bring home mouthwatering treats.
Walking ’round a winter wonderland is fine—if you’re in a Bing Crosby movie. But this is the Wisconsin Dells, and winter activities around here are a bit more lively. Ever since snowboarding slid onto the scene, outdoor thrill seekers have been shredding up the snow-covered hills in search of excitement. Wildside Adventure Sport in Baraboo, Wisconsin is a great place to begin any snowboarding adventure.
This outfitter offers wrist guards, helmets and kneepads and will make sure your bindings are adjusted correctly. Snowboarding is a demanding sport, so make sure you’re in shape and play it safe out on the slopes during your winter family vacation. Learning the proper techniques for jumping, falling and busting huge air can prevent injury. Group and individual lessons are available at Christmas Mountain Village from experienced instructors at the on-site snowboard park.