First Timer’s Guide

How Do I get Started?

Everything you need to know is right here. Below are explanations and links for all of the most common questions, as well as some you may not even have thought of yet.   We are, of course, happy to answer all of your questions in person or over the phone.  Our knowledgeable reservations staff guide many first time skiers and riders through the process everyday.  Don’t hesitate to give us a call at 845-878-4100 ext. 306

We recommend that all first time skiers and snowboarders take lessons.  A lesson from one of our trained professionals is going to help you with everything:  dressing properly, equipment selection, starting, stopping, turning, lift usage, as well as how long to stay out your first time and where to practice for the most success.  Use our Lesson Finder application or visit the Snowsports School Page to find out more about all of our lesson programs.

What Should I Wear?

If you dress properly with today’s modern fabrics, you can stay warm and dry and therefore, stay out longer, even in harsh winter weather.   Waterproof snowpants, a winter jacket and water proof gloves are a must! Click here, for in-depth information about dressing head-to-toe, from base layer to outer shell, for a comfortable and fun day on the slopes.

How Do I Get There?

We are right off Route 22 in Patterson, NY.  Use: 50 Thunder Ridge Road, Patterson, NY 12563 for your GPS or navigation app.  Visit our Find Us page for more detailed driving directions.
You can also take the train.   We offer a free shuttle from the Patterson, NY Metro North Train Station to and from the ski area.

Where Do I Go (when I get there)?

Come up the walk way from the parking lot to the big deck on the south side of the building.  There are several glass doors on the deck which lead to our main desk where you can check in with Snowsports School, buy lift tickets, or arrange for rentals.  Our knowledgeable staff will direct you to the rental department, cafeteria, locker room, to the correct lesson area, or to the appropriate lift and terrain to get you on your way.

When Should I Get There?

Usually early in the day is the best skiing and riding.  We open at 10AM on weekdays and 9AM on weekends and during Holiday periods.  Our Rental Department opens 1/2 an hour earlier on weekdays and 1 hour earlier on the weekend and Holiday days.

If you have a reservation for a lesson, you should check in no later than 1/2 an hour beforehand.  On weekends and during Holiday periods you should plan on arriving an hour beforehand.  Especially if you are also renting equipment from us.

What Should I Expect?

Skiing and Riding anywhere during a Holiday period or on a weekend is a very different experience than during the week.  During the week (especially in the morning) you can anticipate little or no crowds, smaller lesson groups, small (or no) lines, and plenty of room to spread out and relax.
On Weekend and Holiday days the resort accommodates A LOT more people.  We train our staff to efficiently respond to our guest’s needs and to help everyone through the reservation, check-in, rental, and ticketing process.  There will be lines on busy days.  We plan for these and make every effort to keep every line moving, while still taking the time to provide each guest with the services they need.
Regardless of when you come, you can expect a warm and friendly greeting along with personalized service from a knowledgeable staff who are happy that you have chosen Thunder Ridge for your introduction to Skiing or Riding.

Why Should I Take a Lesson (from Snowsports School)?

First time skiers and riders who take a lesson from a professional are much more likely to ski or ride a second or third time than those who don’t.  Our staff receive a minimum of 30 hours of instructor training before we introduce them to you.  Most of our staff have been teaching for two or more seasons.  We will guide you through a proven skill development progression that will give you the abilities you need to be an independent skier or rider.  We’ll do it as quickly as you are able to develop.  Our goal is to get you out on the hill enjoying the sport.   We know your friend or [insert relation here] is a great skier or rider, but are they a great teacher?  Even if they are, do you want to put that kind of stress on your relationship?  Let our staff get you going so you can enjoy both the mountain and each other.

Visit for more information about being active outside in the winter.

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