Best Sledding Hills
By Melinda Murphy
Wow! Talk about getting hammered with snow! I mean... really! Hudson kept looking out the window and them back at me. It was really cute. Maisie jumped up and down screaming, “Snow!” I almost think she remembers sledding last year, but it’s hard to know what exactly a two-year-old recalls. She definitely remembered snow and was super excited about it all.
Westchester is a wonderful place to grow up with a toboggan under your arm. The county is oozing with fabulous hills. One of the best and busiest is in Eastchester with parking just off of Route 22. The town-owned Lake Isle Country Club’s 17th fairway is officially open to sledding for residents of Eastchester, Tuckahoe, and Bronxville though I didn’t see any sledding police checking ID. I talked my mommy friend, Tanya, into bringing her son, Bradley, along. Of course, Tanya is from California and had never been sledding a day in her life. I’m from West Texas which is not exactly known for snow or hills. It was a case of the blind leading the blind. Of course, the kids didn’t know the difference. Snow is snow when you’re not even two.
I kind of forgot what a work out sledding is. Good grief! For older kids, this is a wonderful way to get them out the door and off the couch on a cold winter’s day. The kids had an absolute ball even though poor Maisie looked like the kid from “A Christmas Story.” She was so bundled up that she couldn’t even put her arms down, yet somehow she managed to stay on the sled. The seat belt probably had something to do with it. Bradley actually preferred running in the snow to sitting in the sled though he took a couple of turns. It was a wonderful 30 minutes - a half-hour that took a half-day for which to prepare.
Nobody had more fun than all the older kids on the slope. Holy cow! Those kids can really fly! I did see one kid tossed into the air after getting hit by another sled. He bravely got up and shook it off. It it’d had been me, I’d have been in the hospital for a week demanding more chocolate ice cream. Aw - youth.
Of course, it’s early in the season and last year I couldn’t exactly drag a toddler from hill to hill, but I’ve done some research and heard of a lot of other great spots. A great resource? The Westchester County Parks website. It also includes information on cross-country skiing and ice skating.
When I called the women at Ward Pound Ridge Reservation for more information (914-864-7317), she informed me that the hill in Cross River is hands down the best sledding in the county. How’s that for a recommendation! Reportedly, there is a super-duper hill with a short pitch at the end for one last thrill. On weekends, cars pay $8 or $4 with a Westchester County Park Pass. Weekdays, it’s free.
Here are a few other public hills though, like I said, I haven’t been there myself. There are also countless private hills. Decisions, decisions.
Zinsser Park, Hastings-on-Hudson
Leonard Park, Mount Kisco
Gedney Park, New Castle
Davenport Park, New Rochelle
Pound Ridge Town Park, Pound Ridge
Rockwood Hall State Park, Sleepy Hollow
Sleepy Hollow High School, Tarrytown
Pelton Field, Yonkers
Downing Park, Yorktown
My favorite part of sledding? Hot chocolate at the end though - get this - Maisie doesn’t like it. Can you imagine? A child who snubs a warm, velvety cup of pure love? Weird kid. Oh well... that just means more for me!