Cazenovia, New York
Located a few miles southeast of Syracuse, the charming town of Cazenovia on Cazenovia Lake makes an ideal base for accessing a few skishoeing areas. Stay at the Brae Loch Inn downtown, which offers everything you need from a restaurant and bar to a roaring fireplace in the lobby that makes the ideal happy hour venue amid the hotel’s Scottish ambience. From here you can walk to several other restaurants on the main street.
When you venture to Highland Forest and see the opulent Skyline Lodge there, you’ll be amazed you’re in a county park. Lying in the southwestern corner of Onondaga County, the park boasts a network of cross-country ski trails roughly divided into four directional quadrants. But they also have snowshoe trails crisscrossing the area and various other paths between trails that hold untracked snow for some ideal skishoeing. When you’re done, enjoy a meal or snack in the lodge, along with hot chocolate, beer, and wine while relaxing in front of a huge fireplace. Or enjoy a horse-drawn carriage ride through the snow.
Just east of Syracuse lies Green Lakes State Park, where you’ll find a network of trails that stretches between two lakes at the base and a golf course higher up. Most trails are packed by cross-country skiers and fat-tire bikers, but there are occasional venues such as a power line right-of-way and the golf course where you can float through powder.