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Ice Skating

From The Blog Woodstock winter essentials: 3 free outdoor activities

Snowy recreation no budget necessary

This winter, you don't need to spend big to make the most of the great outdoors in Woodstock. Read on to reveal 3 no-cost alfresco adventures that'll take you across ice and snow for moments you won't soon forget...

Important Note: Masks are required within the village. Please review, respect, and adhere to all posted COVID-19 safety guidelines when visiting the destinations listed below. Do not visit these locations if you are sick or have come into contact with a person confirmed to have COVID-19.

Gathering with other households is prohibited as per Gov Scott's recent mandate. Anyone returning to or visiting Vermont from out-of-state MUST complete a 14-day quarantine (or get a PCR test on or after day 7 of quarantine and end your quarantine with a negative test result)—click here for more information.

Vail Field Ice Rink skating
Leanne Jillson Tapley via Facebook
The ice is calling at Vail Field

1. Ice skating at Vail Field

This well-loved village park (just south of the town green) has undergone a transformation in the snow.

Here on outdoor rinks, you can practice your figure 8 or clapper depending on the name of your game—whether it be figure skating, ice hockey, or just introducing yourself to the ice for the first time!

Thanks to the hard work of community members, this resource is free and open to all, and to sweeten the deal, the pavilion cubbies are chock-full of skates that have been donated over the years.

2. Snowshoeing in A WINTER WONDERLAND

All you need for a peaceful interlude in nature is a pair of snowshoes (or x-country skis!) and a few free hours to wile away.

We recommend you check out the Ottauquechee River Trail near East End Park for 2.5 miles of flat, snow-covered pathways that meander along the edges of waterways, farmland, and historic rail beds. Once you catch a glimpse of those views, it’ll be love at frost sight.

Ottaquechee River Trail winter snow
Tom Weschler
Follow the river for a spectacular trek on the Ottauquechee River Trail
Kiosk Ottauqeuchee River Trail winter
Tom Weschler
This kiosk is your starting point for your adventure on the river trail
Ottauquechee River Trail winter waterway snow
Tom Weschler
There are various lookouts that'll compel you to stop & take it all in
Ottauquechee River Trail in winter snowy views
Tom Weschler
Distant views and flat, peaceful expanses of nature await

3. Weekend sledding on the old Mt Tom ski hill

No childhood is complete without memories of zipping down snowy hillsides on a lightening-fast sled—and let’s be honest, no adulthood is complete without trying to recapture that joy!

The wide, clear, long slope of the Mt Tom hill is perfectly situated for downhill fun, due in some part to its history as a ski area which ran until the 1980s. Now, this ungroomed site (a few minutes north of Billings Farm on Route 12) is the perfect place for an hour or two of winter recreation for all ages.

NOTE: All of the above recreation options rely on proper conditions and safety precautions.