Winter Outfitters in the Catskills and Hudson Valley

Posted by Coldwell Banker Village Green Realty Webmaster on Monday, January 17th, 2022 at 12:39pm.


Local Winter Outfitters

In The Catskills And Hudson Valley

At this time of year I’m thinking about keeping warm and healthy, and although I could easily stay indoors until April, I want to get out and breathe the air! One way of keeping warm is getting cozy in front of a crackling fire, but I’m convinced warmth comes from the inside out, and the best way to get warm is to get moving.

I love living in the Hudson Valley, one of the most beautiful places on the planet, and I really appreciate how the beauty changes with each season. In winter, I see the underpinnings, the mountains’ outlines against the sky, the bare trees’ graceful limbs, the muted colors and the shapes of nature. It’s never as cold outside as it looks from inside the house, so join me – let’s get out there and enjoy it!

When you think of winter sports, what comes to mind? For most people, it’s downhill skiing or snowboarding. We’re lucky in the Hudson Valley/Catskills region – we’ve got choices when it comes slopes! Hunter, Windham, Catamount, Belleayre… But if screaming downhill isn’t for you, there are outdoor winter activities that offer peace; snowshoes and cross-country skis can take you into the silent woods, where you can do a bit of bird-watching, forest bathing, or track some winter wildlife. (Here’s a NY DEC list that will help you identify animals tracks you might come upon in the snow.) (Here are some suggestions on where to walk.)


For me, the key to enjoying the outdoors in winter is having the appropriate clothing and gear. If there might be ice, I’m much more likely to brave it with a set of boot spikes. If I’m going to need both spikes and snowshoes, I need a pack that has the right stuff to hold my showshoes, spikes, and poles when I have to switch back and forth between them. The right gear can mean the difference between a trudge and a great time. Fortunately, we have some great outfitters in the area who carry the gear we need for our terrain and employ knowledgeable salespeople to help you choose wisely and advise you on how to put your new gear to use.

In Ulster County, Kenco Outfitters and Potter Brothers Ski & Snowboard Shops are outfitting staples, both on Route 28 in Kingston. Then there’s Catskill Outfitters in Phoenicia, Rock & Snow in New Paltz and the EMS Climbing School and Technical Gear Shop in Gardiner. In Greene County, Hunter and Windham naturally have ski shops on and near the ski resorts. Outfitters include The Pro Ski & Ride and Snowbird Ski Shop in Hunter and Windham Mountain Outfitters in Windham. Potter Brothers have another shop in Dutchess County (Fishkill). Let’s take a little outfitter tour…


 


Windham Mountain Outfitters

Windham Mountain Outfitters in Windham is right on the way to the mountain. They have everything from hats and goggles (did you leave yours on your kitchen counter on the way out the door?) to snow shoes, ski rentals and ski sales. They have a luxury service I love; rent a ski package for $299 for up to five months and they’ll deliver them to you.

 




Pro Ski and Ride

The Pro Ski and Ride, a half-mile from the entrance to Hunter Mountain, has been in business nearly 30 years. Along with rentals and sales, their specialty is custom boot-fitting and custom foot-beds, with accreditation from America’s Best Bootfitters to substantiate that! Awesome! There is nothing better than a ski boot with the perfect fit! In the ski-world, there might be nothing worse than ill-fitting ski boots – man, are they a totally-avoidable-bummer! The Pro Ski and Ride is a great place to get a ski tune-up; they’re a Phantom Permanent Waxless Glide dealer with a professional cure station! 

 
 
 
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Snowbird Ski Shop

Snowbird Ski Shop in Hunter is also about a half-mile from the entrance to Hunter Mountain, and they’ve been around about 50 years. Daily rentals go for $39 while for just $219 you can rent a package for the season with breakage insurance and tune-ups included!


 

Kenco

Kenco is one of my favorite stores! Go in there when you have plenty of time on your hands because you’ll get swept away by all the cool stuff. Need a pair of flattering fleece pants? (They exist!) A beautiful wool sweater? A backpack to trek with a toddler? Kenco sells everything from anti-fog lens treatment to Lib Tech Orca snowboards, to the most wonderful socks. They’ve got cross-country skis and snowshoes, ice traction equipment and inflatable snow bodyboards. All their goods are chosen by people who “actually spend time in the outdoors.” Kenco is a locally-owned business; they’ve been around since 1982 when they started with a little store on Rock City Road in Woodstock (we're old neighbors). The Route 28 location is a destination, plus they’re famous for being “always friendly.”

 
 
 
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Catskill Outfitters

Catskill Outfitters of Phoenicia not only sells outdoor winter gear but will take you on a snowshoeing trip into the Catskills or a winter fly-fishing expedition in the Esopus, Beaverkill, West Branch or East Branch. Whether you’re a beginner or experienced angler or hiker, Catskill Outfitters’ guides promise to lead you on an unforgettable adventure. Let’s sign up!

 
 
 
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Rock & Snow

For over 40 years, Rock & Snow of New Paltz has been one of those stores where you want to buy everything even if you’re not sure how to use it. It’s not far from the Gunks (that’s Shawangunk Mountains to newcomers) including Mohonk Preserve and Minnewaska State Park where rock climbing is the order of the day. Rock & Snow specializes in climbing gear for those who want to give it a try on a summer day, and those who want to scale the icy rock faces every day of winter. Among their winter climbing gear you’ll find ice axes, ice screws and ice picks; crampons, slider and spinner leashes and a pan-pipe ice-screw holder. I have to admit, I’ve never used most of those things, but they sound really, really cool. The rest of their winter gear ranges from Hemispheres Bib to Leki ELS pole expanders with ski helmets, skis, boots, bindings, poles, goggles and snowshoes in between. The staff members are all climbers, hikers and runners who live nearby and know of what they speak. Rock & Snow donates part of their sales income to local preservation efforts, ensuring the “health and vitality of the Gunks for generations to come.” Thank you Rock & Snow!

 


 


Cabin Fever Outfitters

We loved it when Cabin Fever Outfitters was down the street from our Woodstock office. A few years ago they hopped the river to a great (larger) Rhinebeck location. They’ve got bikes, they’ve got boots, packs, great socks (socks are so important), plus a lot of pretty local goods. Check them out!

 

 


 

Now you know where to go for gear and advice, layer up and get going!

 


 

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