Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products and services; you can learn more about our review process here. We may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links.
Colorado and California certainly aren't the only places with world-class powder in the U.S. You can even find more than a handful of ski resorts within a short drive from Washington, D.C.
The nation's capital is surrounded by ski areas that also offer snowboarding, snow tubing, snowshoeing, and more. These eastern slopes can accommodate both experts and beginners, so you can be a newbie and still enjoy the runs around Washington, D.C. Gear rental and lessons are offered by all.
Liberty Mountain Resort
The aptly-named Liberty Mountain Resort is the closest to the nation's capital, located just 8 miles southwest of historic Gettysburg. It has 16 trails and three terrain parks, serviced by nine lifts, with complete snowmaking coverage. Amenities include snow tubing, lessons, equipment rental, a child-care center, a hotel and conference center, and an array of restaurants and bars.
Distance from Washington, D.C.: 78 miles; 1 hour, 15 minutes
This family-friendly resort in Mercersburg, Pennsylvania, offers nine lifts and two terrain parks, with 100-percent snowmaking coverage. Not only can newbies rent gear and take lessons on-site, but Whitetail also offers a snow-sports program for children and adults with mental and physical challenges.
Distance from Washington, D.C.: 91 miles; 1 hour, 30 minutes
Roundtop Mountain Resort
Beginners are welcome at Roundtop Mountain Resort, especially because of its three-day Discovery Package, which just about guarantees you'll be a "superhero of snow" by the end of it (well, almost). If you don't take to skiing and snowboarding, you can go tubing or paintballing, also at the park. There are nine lifts and a terrain park here with a superpipe and halfpipe.
Distance from Washington, D.C.: 114 miles; 2 hours
Bryce Mountain Resort
This four-season resort in the heart of the Shenandoah Valley, Virginia—conveniently located near Shenandoah National Park—offers skiing, snowboarding, racing events, and lessons. Nearby are also historical sites and wine vineyards to visit. The property is a member-owned resort, so although all activities and facilities are open to the public, members have access to additional benefits and amenities.
Distance from Washington, D.C.: 115 miles; 2 hours
Let the kids explore Massanutten's indoor waterpark if they don't fancy skiing. The lazy river and tube slides are fun for any age after a day out on the slopes. This resort is set in an authentic mountain village, so you'll think you're in the Swiss Alps rather than just a couple hours from Washington, D.C. After dark, you and the family can bundle up for a bit of night skiing.
Distance from Washington, D.C.: 140 miles; 2 hours
Wintergreen Ski Resort
Located in the heart of Central Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains, this four-season resort features two championship golf courses, an award-winning tennis program, a full-service spa, hiking, fly fishing, horseback riding, swimming, and mountain biking in addition to skiing, snowboarding, and snow tubing. The park is for daytime playing only, though, because it doesn't have any on-site accommodation. There are condominiums and vacation homes around the area.
Distance from Washington, D.C.: 160 miles; 3 hours
Canaan Valley Resort & Conference Center
A ski resort with its very own ice skating rink? You got it. While it might sound cliché, Canaan Valley Resort really does have something for the whole family: a fitness center, a pool, a spa, miles of hiking and biking trails, cross-country skiing, and swanky restaurants. It has 42 trails, three chairlifts, two magic carpets, and snowmaking on more than 75 percent of the mountain.
Distance from Washington, D.C.: 178 miles; 3 hours
Wisp Ski Resort
Maryland's only ski resort is located near Deep Creek Lake in Garrett County. The resort offers a wide range of winter activities including skiing, snowboarding, snow tubing, outdoor ice skating, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, and sleigh rides. There are seven chairlifts, five surface lifts, and four freestyle parks. The area is one of the most scenic in the state and makes a great getaway destination.
Distance from Washington, D.C.: 180 miles; 3 hours
Seven Springs Mountain Resort
Seven Springs is a 5,000-acre ski resort located in Pennsylvania's Laurel Mountains, an hour south of Pittsburgh. The resort is open year-round and offers snowmobile tours, snowcat rides, snowshoe tours, an indoor pool, hot tubs, mini golf, a game room, roller skating, and a fitness room. There is a hotel on site, so you can stay for days without ever being bored.
Distance from Washington, D.C.: 192 miles; 3 hours, 30 minutes
Snowshoe Ski Resort
It may be the furthest from the city, but Snowshoe's 57 trails over 251 ski-able acres are worth the drive. It's the biggest ski area in the region and gets the most snowfall of any that are drivable from Washington, D.C. The mountain is 4,848 feet tall and has a vertical drop of 1,500 feet. The many hotels and lodges dotted around the area make this destination a great long-weekend retreat.
Distance from Washington, D.C.: 238 miles; 5 hours