Winterplace Ski Resort is a great family ski resort, where you'll be able to enjoy skiing, snowboarding and snow tubing in a cozier atmosphere than at many larger and more well-known resorts. Because of the small size you get personalized attention from the staff, the staff are friendly and the lifts are rarely packed. That means you spend more times on the slopes instead of waiting in line. Since Winterplace has such a family atmosphere, of course there are plenty of things for families and kids to enjoy. Snow tubing is one of the fun things for kids, but there's also a SkiWee program and Ski Trips for Kids that are designed for the little ones to enjoy the snow and learn skiing skills. There are also the ski and snowboard lessons that are taught to both adults and kids at Winterplace, which is a great way to spend some family time.
Around the ski resort, you can enjoy a number of great restaurants, with many of them a type of country, home-style restaurant that the area is known for. You don't have to stay in Ghent for your dining, but if you do you'll find a number of home-style as well as ethnic and finer dining restaurants. Or you can travel to nearby towns like Hinton, Beckley and Shady Spring for a larger variety of West Virginia restaurants.
There are a number of shops where you can stock up on the things you need, with a few in Ghent but many down the road just a few minutes along I-77. Outfitters, groceries, specialty shops and more available right in that area along the highway, with more specialty stores in the nearby towns, as well.
For après-ski and nightlife, you have several choices. There are some bar-type restaurants at the resort itself and right in Ghent, or you can travel just a short distance to places like Beckley, Mount Hope and other nearby towns that are just down I-77 a few minutes for a bit more excitement. Winterplace with its family emphasis has less of a hopping nightlife than some might expect. Sports bars, taverns and clubs with life and canned music are available in the nearby towns, if you prefer, as well as restaurants with bars where you can enjoy dinner and drinks.
With over 8 feet of snow per year, 28 trails and 9 lifts that are almost always all up and operating, Winterplace is a great place if you’re looking to just stay on the slopes. Because the vertical drop isn’t huge as compared to many resorts at only just over 600 feet, if you’re looking for a screaming downhill challenge you might be disappointed. Only 15% of the runs are advanced. Of the runs that are left, about half are intermediate and challenging enough for the average skier, and half are designed just for beginners. Winterplace is a great place for beginners because of the smaller drop and the number of beginner runs, but if you’re looking for the best ski action available in that area, Winterplace does have the biggest drop of the resorts in that region.
For boarders, Winterplace offers a terrain park and a half-pipe. The terrain park is filled with gaps, hips, and a variety of tabletops and rails to offer challenges, and during this ski season they’re expanding the terrain park to add even more great features. The half-pipe is a great place to work on your boarding skills. The terrain park isn’t designed for the expert boarder, though there’s a lot there for even a very experienced boarder to enjoy. Beginners will enjoy some of the easier features that are designed to let them learn skills and move up to the bigger challenges.
Probably the most popular activity aside from skiing and snowboarding is snow tubing, and taking classes at the ski school at Winterplace. Of course, if you’re looking for some fun away from the resort, you can find things like spas, theaters and entertainment just a few minutes down the road. There are a number of things to do and see off I-77 which is just a few minutes from the resort, so it’s easy to spend a day doing other things and sightseeing if you’re ready for a break from the slopes.
The main lodge is a popular place for people to gather après-ski, but there are a number of nightclubs and bars in the Winterplace area, many of them off the Interstate and just a short drive away.