Best Place within 7 hours of Indianapolis?

Andy L

New member
I am planning a two day ski/board trip for about 6 people of wide ranging abilities. The trip will be probably the 1st or 2nd of Jan. '09. We are coming from Indianapolis and none of us have any idea what the good places are and what places to avoid.

I would like to drive no more than about 7 hours. So far I have looked at Caberfae and Crystal Mtn.

Any suggestions and feedback would be appreciated. Thanks.


New member
Caberfae’s going to give you the best value. It’s got more of the ‘mom and pop’ feel, 1 lodge on property with modest hotel style rooms. It has an ok variety of terrain. I haven’t been to Crystal in a number of years, but it has more trails and will cost you a lot more $. It is a resort, with most of the amenities you would expect.

I don’t know the driving distance from Indy, but another hour will get you up to Boyne Highlands and Nubs Nob, then Boyne Mountain is another 30-40 min further North. Most people will classify those, in different orders, as the top 3 in lower Michigan. All 3 have just a little bit more vertical than Caberfae and Crystal.


New member
Colorado would be within 7 hours, and so would utah. I mean seriously if you are going to drive 7 hours...

I would head to west virginia. That would be within 7 hours I think. Just south of bloomington is peoli peaks, but that probably wouldn't be worth your while. Frankly, if you're in Indianapolis I would fly out west. It would take just as much time but be much more worth your while than skiing in the midwest.


New member
Dank pretty well nailed it on Caberfae.

If you are thinking of going a little further north.

7 hours 16 mins from Indy to Petoskey, MI.. That would put you right in the middle of Boyne MT, Nubs Nob, Boyne Highlands area.
If you don't stay right at the ski hills, you can save some cash by staying in Petoskey.
Lots of after skiing things to do in that area (restaurants, casinos, indoor water parks, snow shoeing state parks, sled hills, walks along lake Michigan's frozen beaches)
If you end up going to the Petoskey area and have questions, ask away, i know that area very well.

Andy L

New member
Thanks for the feedback guys.

I lived in CO myself until moving to Indy just a couple years ago, the drive there is about 16 hours though, I miss it everyday but the group isn't looking to spend that much money, plane tickets alone would equal the cost of the entire trip to Michigan.

I had considered WV, I actually like Snowshoe alot but it was not good at all for beginners and I don't know of anything else comparable to Snowshoe in that area.

Thanks for the suggestions outside of MI, one of the things I am trying to decide is if Michigan is our best bet for something better than a Paoli Peaks but still within driving distance.

I have not looked at Boyne Mountain, Highlands, and Nubs Nob but I will now, thank you.


New member
Not to rain on your trip planning, but if you’re from Colorado and never skied in Michigan, just be prepared to be a little disappointed. But, like you mentioned, you don’t have many options in the Midwest if you are on a budget. You can still have fun, but there is really no comparison to out west. Last year when I was out there I was trying to explain to a local how short the runs are in Michigan and she attempted to sympathize by saying she didn’t like Breck because they have short runs too. I think she was somewhat geographically challenged. Anyway, after your trip be sure to come back and give us a report. Good luck.

Tony Crocker

Staff member
I think rfarren was referring to the other recent post in the Midwest section about the $177 airfare to SLC. I just nabbed a $172 fare to SLC in January a couple of days ago. January is typically low season in the travel business, and in the current economy there might be even more bargains than usual. So it pays to do some investigating before you commit to a 15 hour RT drive to a 500 footer.

Andy L

New member
I have done some East Tennessee skiing as well so I like to think I have experienced both ends of the spectrum. On the topic of super amazing places have any of you been to Kicking Horse up in Alberta? Unbelievable, I think over 4000' vertical, supposedly second most in North America.

I really wish I thought I could make a trip out west work with the cheap airfare, but I am looking at a two-day trip to Caberfae running around $150/person for lodging/lift tickets/gas money.

On the cheap airfare thing though Southwest does a $86 each way to Denver from here in Indy, I don't know if they have similiar pricing from other places around the midwest.

Thanks again for all of the feedback so far, there has been alot more than I thought I would get in a short time. So far I am looking at either Caberfae or Boyne Mtn. depending on the money the people in the group want to spend.

Old Timer

New member
Perhaps you might consider Cascade or Devil's Head in Wisconsin too, both are around 450-500 feet vertical, near Wisconsin Dells. If you would be willing to drive a little further, Rib Mountain or what is now known as Granite Peak is around 800 feet vertical right off of I-39 in Wisconsin too. The best skiing near you is at Perfect North down by Cincinnati, when they are open. Southwest Airlines are really cheap out of Indy to Denver nowadays too. Two hours from DIA you can enjoy all that Summit County has to offer plus visit Loveland there too. It is just a little further to Seven Springs in PA too, plus Blue Knob is just a little beyond there too. Blue Knob has over 1000 feet of vertical plus a relatively high elevation too. It would be quite a drive to get to Snowshoe. Maybe 8 hours from you is Holiday Valley and Holimont near Ellicotville, NY too. Holimont is a private club that goes public midweek, and they have around 800 feet vertical, maybe 10 lifts base to summit too. Holiday Valley is pretty large, but only has two lifts with over 600 feet of vertical. If you have 10 hours each way to give, my first choice would be Bristol Mtn south of Rochester, NY, and your best lodging is over in Canandaigua. Bristol has 1100 feet of vertical, a HSQ, and night skiing too. Western New York State has pretty dependable snow too.


LandonY":2rt6gfa7 said:
I live in Indianapolis and I would either head north to Boyne or east to Snowshoe. Snowshoe is a little over 8 hours. Boyne is right at 7 hours. As far as local slopes, I actually like Perfect North over Paoli. Perfect North has about a 400' vertical.

Fly to Salt lake city.

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