If you are thinking about hitting the slopes this winter, be sure to check out these 10 military skiing and outdoor winter fun destinations! Not only will you find discounted lodging rates when you stay on base, but you may be able to save on equipment rental and purchase through Outdoor Recreation Services and tickets through the Information, Travel and Ticketing (ITT) office. In this time of frequent change, make sure you consult with your travel destination to confirm any COVID-19 restrictions they may have in place for the 2020-2021 ski season.
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Check out this list of great locations for your next winter adventure!
Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson (JBER), Alaska: With its own ski area, JBER winter fun is as easy as one-two-three! The Hillberg Ski Area offers beginner and intermediate slopes with a variety of activities hosted throughout the season to include ski and snowboarding lessons, monthly dog sled races, tubing and other special events. The ski area has chairlifts, a surface lift and a T-bar lift. After a day of fun, enjoy a cup of hot cocoa and snacks at the T-Bar Grill while shaking off the chill, then head back to your lodging for some R&R! Alaska has COVID-19 travel regulations at the moment, including a 5 day quarantine for out of state travelers and recommended COVID-19 testing. The Hillberg Ski Area currently has no information released regarding their 2020-2021 season, so check back with Military Living for the latest information regarding closures due to COVID-19.
Lake Tahoe Coast Guard Recreation Facilities, California: Lake Tahoe is a winter paradise for everyone! And with the Lake Tahoe Recreation Facilities nearly at the center of all the winter fun, guests here will be sure to enjoy this destination. Although rental equipment is not available at this location, it still makes the list because, well, it is Lake Tahoe! Enjoy nearby skiing, winter wonderland in the city, or just relaxing in the affordable A-Frames. At the time of publication, the lodging at the Lake Tahoe Coast Guard Recreation Facility is open only to active duty servicemembers and their immediate families. COVID-19 restrictions will vary based on which nearby ski resort guests choose to visit. Consult with individual websites for more details.
Fort Carson, Colorado: Located along the front range of the Rocky Mountains, Fort Carson offers a variety of on-base and area winter activities for everyone! Outdoor Recreation offers a wide range of snow equipment rentals while the Mountain Post Outfitters offers great deals on retail winter activity gear. Visit the ITR office on base to get the best deal on lift tickets and passes for area resorts. Affordable and convenient lodging on base through IHG Army Hotels. Currently, Fort Carson requires all visitors to answer some COVID-19 screening questions upon arrival, but visitors are welcome. The Camp Falcon recreation facility on Fort Carson is currently open with limited rental capabilities. COVID-19 restrictions will vary based on which nearby ski resort guests choose to visit. Consult with individual websites for more details.
Portsmouth Naval Shipyard – Kittery, Maine: With several ski resorts within a short drive and a variety of winter sports rentals from Outdoor Recreation, this location is perfect for getting away to the slopes or cross-country skiing and then returning to a variety of winter activities on and around the base! Guests will appreciate the comforts of the NGIS lodging facility on base for its convenience and affordability. Maine currently requires a 14 day quarantine from out of state visitors. The Navy Gateway Inn & Suites in Kittery is open and accepting reservations. Outdoor Gear Rental is open to visitors.
Hanscom Air Force Base, Massachusetts: Within 60 miles of the installation, there are 8-10 downhill and cross-country ski areas to choose from for a day of fun! And, Hanscom Outdoor Recreation Services rents all the gear you will need for some family fun or for your getaway with friends! The convenience of the base to outdoor winter fun as well as the affordable lodging and equipment rental options puts this destination near the top of the list! Massachusetts requires all visitors to complete a mandatory 14 day quarantine. The Hanscom Inn at Hanscom AFB is currently open to visitors with some safety restrictions, and the FamCamp is open as well.
United States Military Academy at West Point, New York: The Victor Constant Ski Area is located on-base and offers gear rental, lessons and sales. They also have snowmaking machines to make sure the conditions stay perfect for winter sports. Interestingly, the ski area was dedicated in 1946 in memory of Capt. S. Victor Constant, Dept of MA&E. As coach of skiing, he designed and supervised the construction of these slopes and tows. By his skill and leadership, Capt. Constant developed recreational and competitive skiing into major activities at the Military Academy. Lodging and a full range of support facilities are also available on-base. New York requires a 14 day quarantine for all incoming visitors. Visitors are welcome at West Point with the completion of COVID-19 screening questions.
Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania: Situated approximately 20 miles northwest of Harrisburg, visitors will enjoy the history of the second-oldest active military base as well as the convenience of lodging and support facilities. Within 60 miles, there are five ski resorts, including Avalanche Xpress, which offers 10 tubing hills, ice skating and lots of outdoor fun! Outdoor Recreation Services offers ski rental packages as well as snowshoe equipment and snow sleds. Be sure to check out IHG Army Lodging on base! Check with individual ski resorts for any COVID-19 restrictions before planning your trip.
Hill Air Force Base, Utah: Located within 60 miles of 15-20 ski areas, Hill Air Force Base is a great destination for a skiers paradise! Outdoor Recreation Services offers a variety of day, weekend and seasonal rentals to include downhill skis, cross-country and snowboarding as well as snow sleds. Maintenance tune-ups are available, too. Don’t forget to visit ITT for discounted lift and resort tickets, and be sure to check out on-base lodging while here! Hill AFB is the base with the most normal procedures in place at present. Visitors are welcome, and no requirement to quarantine!
Whidbey Island NAS, Washington: There is so much to see and do here. Nestled near islands and the Olympic Mountain range, the activities are endless. Snowboard equipment and gear rentals as well as snowshoe gear and ice axe arrest equipment! If you are willing to try something different this winter, check out what Whidbey Island Outdoor Recreation Services has to offer. Be sure to check out the superb lodging options on-base before setting out to explore this beautiful and stunning wonderland! Travel restrictions in Washington state vary by county, so make sure to check with the county you’ll be visiting prior to your trip. Whidbey Island NAS is accepting visitors with proper military identification.