Blue Hills Ski Area
Miles from Boston: 20
Lift ticket rates: $16-$36
Though it only has nine trails and one chair lift, at under a half-hour drive, Blue Hills is the closest ski area. And if the picture on this page is any indication, it doesn’t look too crowded.
Miles from Boston: 35
Lift ticket rates: $20-$45
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The slopes stay open until 10 p.m., and there’s a tubing park for those who would normally be stuck in the lodge, which is actually great. It’s called The Outlook, and though any place giving its lodge a different name is immediately suspect, its club sandwich passed the test like an Olympic jumper.
Ski Bradford: Resort and Ski School
Miles from Boston: 36
Lift ticket rates: $22-$42
With 13 trails, eight lifts, and even a terrain park for borders, this North Shore resort has enough to satisfy those who can’t trek up to New Hampshire or Maine — like maybe ski fanatics who are under house arrest but have sympathetic parole officers.
Miles from Boston: 40
Lift ticket rates: $10-$40
Skiers and boarders from bunny hill level to advanced mogul-ers will be happy here. Also, its snow tubing hill is called the Tuba Slide and has lanes to make you feel like a race-car driver.
McIntyre Ski Area
City: Manchester, N.H.
Miles from Boston: 53
Lift ticket rates: $20-$29
It’s the farthest distance from the city, but with the best variety of lessons, it’s great for children and beginners. There’s tubing, too! You don’t need lessons for that, but they’re so comprehensive here that they’d probably teach you if you asked.