Ohiopyle Winter Activities and Skiing

Winter Adventures in Ohiopyle, PA

Ohiopyle Winter Wilderness Voyageurs

Ohiopyle Falls with a frosting

Boating, rafting, hiking, climbing and biking are some of the main draws to our little gem of a town, Ohiopyle, PA.  Winter brings a different flavor of adventure!  It offers visitors a different feel, from a quiet place to get away or a chance to meet and make friends with the locals at Falls City Restaurant and Pub.

Yesterday, I was looking for a quite place to get away.  I put on my long johns, prAna Halle pants, a Polartec Fleece from Mountain Hard Wear, and a beanie from Lole!  There is no such thing as bad weather, just bad gear!  Thanks to our shop at Wilderness Voyageurs I was prepared for anything!  I grabbed my skis and borrowed a friends’ dog.  We took off to explore Ferncliff Peninsula.

Ohiopyle Ferncliff Peninsula Wilderness Voyageurs

Erin enjoying a Ferncliff ski

Starting on the Great Allegheny Passage (GAP) we headed north.  Shortly after, we took a left on to the Ferncliff Peninsula, meeting up with Oakwoods Trail.  I was lucky enough to be the first to pass through since last nights’ snowfall.  With the pup leading the way, she helped to break tracks, making it slightly easier to “kick and glide” my way through the woods.

Ohiopyle Ferncliff Peninsula Wilderness Voyageurs

At the end of Oakwoods trail we dropped down to the right on Buffalo Nut, then continued on Ferncliff towards the famous 20 foot Ohiopyle Falls.  I wouldn’t recommend skiing this route if you are just getting started.  However you can easily kick off your skis and hike the rest of the way!  A few challenges I encountered were dodging and ducking under rhododendron bushes, making turns to avoid the steep downhill/cliff leading down to the Youghiogheny River and a narrow trail.

Ferncliff Peninsula Wilderness Voyageurs

It’s the obstacles along the way that make for some of the best memories and moments.  Bundle up, get outside and enjoy winter!

This post was written by Erin G. Director of bike tours and a year round Ohiopyle Resident.

Wilderness Voyageurs, 103 Garrett Street, Ohiopyle PA 15470



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Ohiopyle Cross Country Skiing Nirvana!

Customers often come into the Wilderness Voyageurs store and ask me what there is to do around here in the winter.  Well, since we got this 10 inch snowfall…cross country skiing!!!  There are some amazing trails in Ohiopyle State Park for all skill levels.  If you are looking for a flat and easy trail the Great Allegheny Passage bike trail is perfect.  The state park will usually groom the bike trail if we get enough snow.  Looking for more of a challenge? Sugarloaf mountain is fun and offers more downhill action.  Sugarloaf often has snow when the park doesn’t, due to its higher elevation.  You can park in the snowmobile area and just follow the hiking trails.  Laurel Ridge State Park and its groomed cross country ski trails is only 15-20 minutes from Ohiopyle.  The Ohiopyle State Park camp ground is another great option, with a series of trails looping out from the camp ground complex.  One the one hint for those trails; make sure it has been under freezing for week or so.  The trails can get boggy.  No fun to get a wet ski.

Ohiopyle Sunset Wilderness Voyageurs

The sun setting on another great ski on sugar loaf.

Ohiopyle winter Wilderness Voyageurs

Fresh turns to be had at an undisclosed location.  

Ohiopyle trails Wilderness Voyageurs

The Great Allegheny Passage prime for cross country skiing fun

Don’t like skiing? Bring along your hiking boots and check out all the beautiful winter scenery in Ohiopyle.   Cucumber falls freezes over and the Ohiopyle Falls turns beautiful shades of blue, you just don’t see in other seasons.  Please, don’t forget to stop by the Wilderness Voyageurs store for warm layers and winter gear.  Winter clothing and gear is now 20 percent off!  Just in time!  Winter just got here!  On Thursdays you could do an after work cross country ski, get warm and stretch those muscles in yoga, and hit the Falls City Pub for some delicious homemade pizza and a refreshing beer.  The Falls City Pub has great homemade food specials and a wonderful beer selection.  Plus it is toasty warm.  Hope to see you there!

This post written by Kate the store chick.

Wilderness Voyageurs  103 Garrett Street,  Ohiopyle, Pa 15470




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Staying warm in Ohiopyle with the Ghost Whisperer Down Jacket

We might be warming up a bit here in Ohiopyle from last week’s deep freeze, but it’s still winter so it is crucial to have the proper gear to stay warm.  Growing up in Wisconsin exposed me to brutal cold temps to the point where you cannot even stand being outside.  That was back in the day where your mom dressed you up like the kid from “A Christmas Story.” Mountain Hardwear Ghost Whisperer Down JacketToday I found the PERFECT jacket to stay warm, comfortable, and stylish.  I ventured out for an hour hike in the windy 9 degree weather wearing the Mountain Hardwear Ghost Whisperer Down Jacket.  At first I questioned how this thin, 8 ounce jacket could possibly keep me warm.  I noticed right away that my core was warm and I did not feel the extreme wind anywhere but my face (must wear scarf next time). Ohiopyle Falls in the winter As I started to get my heart rate up I became very comfortable and warm.  I had a lot of movement in my arms without any bulk.  The jacket is breathable, moisture resistant, and has a stylish fit.  It can also be packed down very small for travel! Don’t believe me?  Check out the specs: The lightest down jacket anywhere now with Q.Shield™ Down. The sub-eight-ounce Ghost Whisperer Down is pared down to perfect essentials: 850-fill Q.Shield™ down, zip-pockets and a cinch hem. Specially formulated Q.Shield™ Down resists moisture and retains critical loft even in damp conditions for consistent, dependable warmth. Features

  • Quilted construction holds insulation in placeimages (2) images (29)
  • Two front handwarmer pockets
  • Low profile, insulated hood
  • Jacket stows in pocket
  • Lightweight single pull hem drawcord

The Basics

Weighing in at just 7 ounces, our 7 denier ripstop nylon fabric and super compressible 850F Q.Shield down combine to give you warmth without the weight.

  • Apparel FitActive
  • Weight7 oz. / 198 g.
  • Center Back Length25 ” / 64 cm

imagesMaterialsimages (3)

  • BodyWhisperer 7D x 10D Ripstop
  •  100% nylon
  • InsulationDuvet Q.Shield™ 850

I would recommend this jacket to anyone looking for a great piece of winter gear.  The Wilderness Voyageurs store carries the Ghost Whisperer Down Jacket in many sizes and colors for men and women! The jacket is now 20 percent off!! Come into the Wilderness Voyageurs store or click here to buy yours today and SAVE 20%!

Wilderness Voyageurs Outfitters

103 Garret Street, Ohiopyle PA 15470



Categories: Gear review, Ohiopyle, Ohiopyle Winter Activities and Skiing, Outdoor Gear | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Ohiopyle looks good in white

It’s been in the single digits for the past week here. A couple days ago, we got hit with eight inches of fluffy snow.

And that made everything real pretty. The sun came out and it was clear and cold, but I was nice and warm in my Smartwool Midweight Crew and Mountain Hardwear Microchill.

Cucumber Falls was a little iced up:

Frozen Cumber Falls

The ice pile at the bottom of the falls was over ten feet high:Cucumber Falls in winter

And it was mostly solid enough to walk right up to it:Punching through the ice at Cucumber FallsThe Meadow Run slides were frozen to a thin channel:Meadow Run slides frozen

And all that snow made for great fat bike riding conditions:Fat biking in Ohiopyle

Categories: Ohiopyle, Ohiopyle Winter Activities and Skiing, Outdoor Gear | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment

Mountain Hardwear Monkey Man jacket review

The Mountain Hardwear Monkey Man jacket is the best fleece I’ve ever worn.

Monkey Man Jacket Wilderness Voyageurs

Actually, it’s the best jacket I’ve ever worn. I bought mine five years ago, and I’ve worn it on almost every chilly day since then.

I run in it, mountain bike in it, then fall asleep on the couch in it.

With five winters of wear, the only place it’s looking mangy is on the elbows. The result of long hours in front of the keyboard:

Monkey man jacket Wilderness Voyageurs

It looks a little like my cat before he licks himself:

I’m sure I could get the elbows back in good condition if I could just stretch my tongue a little farther:

Monkey Man Jacket Wilderness Voyageurs

When I headed out for a run today, it was about 15 degrees. I wore a light wool base layer with my monkey jacket, and I was comfortable the whole time.

The high-loft fleece is light, fluffy, and breathable. In snow or light rain, the fabric takes a while to feel wet.

Under a shell, the fur helps wick away moisture. I’ve never felt sweaty like I do in less fluffy fleeces.

And it’s almost compressible enough to fit inside a turquoise wicker cowboy hat:

But if you wore a hat like the Boss Hog, you could probably squeeze in two Monkey Jackets:

He takes that hat off for one thing, and one thing only.

Anyway, this year’s color is silverback gorilla grey:

Monkey Man Jacket Wilderness Voyageurs

In girls, we have the Monkey Woman Lite, which has some more breathable side panels and a hood. Fall through spring, they’re the best jackets out there.

posted by Montana

Wilderness Voyageurs, 103 Garrett Street, Ohiopyle PA 15470




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Winter isn’t Over Yet

We’ve had some warmer weather and Upper Yough releases this past weekend with more warm weather coming this week.  However winter isn’t over yet and your in luck if you need some winter gear!

Chuck might round house you if you don't take advantage

If your looking for creeking gear we just got in gloves and mambas.  With creeking season coming up it might be time to consider a new rescue vest.  Check back here for the coming review on the Stohlquist and Astral pfd’s.

Remember – Wilderness Voyageurs Outfitter Store is open year round! So if you come into Ohiopyle to enjoy the winter views, cross country skiing, snowshoeing or winter kayaking & you can come warm your fingers and toes in the store. Falls City Restaurant & Pub is open Thursday – Monday with great beers on tap and nightly specials.

Categories: Ohiopyle, Ohiopyle Family Fun, Ohiopyle Winter Activities and Skiing, Outdoor Gear, Restaurants in Ohiopyle, Upper Yough | Tags: | Leave a comment

Family Fun in Ohiopyle !

Come out this Saturday, Feb 5th,  for the 5th annual Winterfest from 11-4 sponsored by Friends of Ohiopyle(FOO)

Winterfest is a great way for the whole family to come out and experience Ohiopyle in the winter time and see the state park is a great place all 4 seasons!

Activities take place at the Sugarloaf Sledding Area in Ohiopyle State Park

February 5, 2011
11 am-4 pm

Activities will include Sledding (some sleds will be available for use, it’s recommened you bring your own)

  • Sleigh Rides
  • Dog Sled Demonstrations
  • Cross country skiing and snowshoeing (Equipment is available for use at no cost)
  • Children’s activities
  • Food and Drinks
  • Bon fire
  • Much more!

There is no admission fee to the event, but donations are welcome and benefit Friends of Ohiopyle, which sponsors the event

For more info contact Barbara Wallace at 724.329.0986 or at eohiopyle@qcol.net


There is something for everyone and all ages, some of the activities going on will be snowshoeing, sled dog demonstrations, sledding, horse-drawn sleigh rides and the human sled dog race!  There will also be free introduction to cross country skiing.

If you want to have fun just hiking and tromping through snow we also have snowshoes for rent at the store and 30% off winter gear!

Categories: Ohiopyle, Ohiopyle Family Fun, Ohiopyle Winter Activities and Skiing | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Get Out This Weekend

This is a perfect weekend to get out and explore the Ohiopyle and the Laurel Highlands.  We got more snow yesterday and everything is covered in a blanket of white and looks amazing.

Jan 27, 2011

We’ve got pletny of snow shoes to rent at the Store( open daily 10-6) so you can explore and check out spots like this:

Brian Looking up at cucumber falls

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If you can’t Duct it…..

This week has been awesome for winter weather. The storm this week has dropped 20 inches so far. I’d like to tell you where the good pow stashes are but there are no friends on a powder day, especially with our limited resources around here. However I will share my gear pick of the week. There is one essential piece of gear everyone must have on all trips whether kayaking/boating/skiing/hiking/camping/ Duct Tape is a must have piece of gear.

I recently went on a road trip and decided I needed the space in my truck bed so I had to make my old roof box carrier work. Years ago the lid blew open after I forgot to lock it and an ice junk hit it resulting in a huge crack with the lid almost split in half. I didn’t have much time to get involved in an elaborate repair so I used a couple screws and a whole lot of duct tape! It made it to New England and back and is still kicking.

I also use duct tape for my play boat. I lost the drain plug and just wad up one piece of tape to fill the plug hole and tape it all up. So, for the many uses and saving my roof box Duct tape gets the gear of the week pick!

Much better then a warranty

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New Snow !

The New Years melt down provided some good boating last week for those that don’t mind the cold.  However its time to get out and ski again after the storm Friday and Saturday droped 10 inches in the Laurel Highlands

Laurel Ridge State Park, 1/10/11

If you don’t own cross country ski equipment check out Laurel Ridge XC ski center for rentals. If you want to hike or snowshoe around the area stop in the Wilderness Voyageurs store or call to ask about snowshoes.

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