Winter in Vegas can be a wonderful experience. Whether you decide to brave the elements and reach snowy heights or stay in town and skate overlooking the bright lights of the Strip, each adventure carries its own bit of magic. Here are some of the best snow activities that you can experience this year near Las Vegas. You can have it all: Snow shoeing, skiing, skating, horse-drawn sleigh rides, snow tubing, all without going more than an hour from the Strip.

Mount Charleston

Spring Mountains National Recreation Area
Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest

When November hits, Las Vegans can generally see white caps on the western mountains. This is when folks travel for the high country to enjoy their very own snowy adventure. Everyone puts on their seldom-used winter gear, loads their favorite toys, sleds, toboggans and skates, into their vehicles and heads to Mount Charleston. The mountains lie within an hour of Vegas and can be accessed from Highway 157 (Kyle Canyon) or Highway 156 (Lee Canyon), depending upon your preference.

Related: Top Winter Hikes Near Las Vegas

Lee Canyon
www.leecanyonlv.com

Lee Canyon is where Las Vegans go to play in the winter. This is the focal point of winter sports. Lee Meadows hosts a snow play area, and the turnoff leads to the Foxtail Picnic Area’s only cleared sledding runs, safe from rocks and debris. This is the perfect place to make snow angels, create a snowman, sled or toboggan. Visitors pay $10 per car for use of the area with its picnic tables, pedestal barbecue grills and heated restrooms.You can catch a ride on a horse-drawn sleigh (Mount Charleston Sleigh Rides, if in operation this season) near the Old Mill Picnic area, and there is also a campground open for winter guests.

Enter the Winter Escape Contest for an ultimate snow package.

Las Vegas Ski And Snowboard Area
6725 Lee Canyon Road
Las Vegas, NV 89124
skilasvegas.com

Those who enjoy skiing and snowboarding can take a ski shuttle from various locations in the Valley to the facility and lifts. Snowboarders can leave the driving to somebody else by taking the ski shuttle from valley locations to the ski area’s facilities and lifts. For information on the bus schedule and skiing details, visit the website. You can also enjoy safe, supervised snow tubing on Rabbit Peak, the beginner run. Children must be at least 36 inches tall, and no lap riding is allowed, for safety’s sake.

Mount Charleston Riding Stables
2 Kyle Canyon Road
www.mountcharlestontrailrides.com

Nothing feels better than breathing the cold, crisp mountain air while on horseback. Trail rides take you to Fletcher Canyon to see the beautiful Aspen trees and giant evergreens. This is the perfect spot to bird watch and see the local wildlife. In winter, when the snow is deep, you can take a sleigh ride and truly “get away from it all.” Arrangements can be made through Mt. Charleston Restaurant & Lounge.

The Ice Rink At The Cosmo
Cosmopolitan
3708 Las Vegas Blvd. South
Las Vegas, NV
(702) 698-7000
www.cosmopolitanlasvegas.com

It may not be surrounded by mounds of snow, but there is something magical about skating in the evening “snow” on real ice, high above the Las Vegas Strip. Boulevard Pool will once more be transformed into an ice rink, complete with a light snow each evening as you glide along the 4200 square foot rink. This is when you have to bundle up and take advantage of the s’mores and treats by the fire pit.

Related: Top Holiday Light Shows in Las Vegas

Sharon Damon is a preschool specialist, avid reader, passionate writer and creative baker/ cook. She has been a cooking instructor at a local Rec Center in Henderson, NV since 2011, and has written for Examiner and other publications since 2010. She knows her way around the keyboard and the kitchen! Sharon moved from a small city in Canada to Las Vegas 6 years ago, to marry the love of her life, and has since been swept up in the whirlwind known as Sin City. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.

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