We’ll be straight: The hills of Illinois and Wisconsin are never going to rival the mountains of Colorado, Wyoming and beyond. But what they lack in height, they more than make up for in convenience. So the next time you need to feel the thrill of swooshing down a slope but can’t stomach the thought of a long, expensive flight, check out one of these ski and snowboard destinations, each one less than five hours from the city.
RAGING BUFFALO SNOWBOARD SKI PARK (1-HOUR DRIVE)
It’s pretty amazing that you can hit the slopes in the ‘burbs. Just 45 miles northwest of the city, this snowboarding haven has half-pipes, kickers and table tops. Don’t worry, there’s plenty for skiers, too.