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Winter Road Trip – Litchfield County – Connecticut

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My family recently spent a long weekend in Litchfield County, Connecticut, an easy destination (under three hours by car) from either New York City or Boston.  Our goal was to get our kids on skis, and thanks to the very patient ski instructors at Mohawk Mountain, in Cornwall, we were quite successful in that endeavor.

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It’s a small, very family friendly place, with extremely kind and competent employees. Spending a Friday there was terrific, as it wasn’t at all crowded. Because the ski classes weren’t full, our daughters had plenty of attention and individualized instruction.  Our younger girl, age five, had a rough go of it at first, panicking a bit. Fortunately, her teacher was unfazed by any weeping and wailing, distracted her by building a small snowman using one ski as a shovel, and then engaged her in a game of tag with one ski on and one ski off.  By the end of the session she was laughing out loud and enthused about trying again the next day. Our older daughter (12) managed to get on the trails with her instructor, getting on and off the chair lifts successfully, falling down and learning to get back up, and making it down the runs unscathed.

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On Saturday the mountain was much more crowded, but the staff there was a model of efficiency, quickly getting everyone fitted with boots and skis.  This time my younger one made it onto the “magic carpet,” a kid-size conveyor belt that took them up a gentle slope. From there, they pointed their skis in the right direction, headed down the hill, and were caught in big bear hugs by the instructors at the bottom.  Tons of fun!  And my older girl exceeded my skiing ability by the end of the trip (not that that was particularly difficult to do–I am not much of a skier) being comfortable and confident on all of the green trails. There were a lot of beginning skiers, children and adults, taking advantage of the longer flying carpet on the bunny hill, and despite the crowds in the lodge and on the easier slopes, there was plenty of room on the advanced trails, much to the delight of my husband, brother in law, and 14-year-old nephew.

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We stayed at the Interlaken Inn, in nearby Lakeville (part of the town of Salisbury), which also featured extremely friendly and helpful staff, and a surprisingly good farm-to-table restaurant, Morgan’s.  (The wine list had some quite affordable selections, the steak was terrific, as was the pasta special, and we appreciated the live music in the evenings.)  Admittedly, the decor was a bit out of date, but we weren’t looking for anything trendy, and the absolutely gracious service, and lovely food in a comfortable setting more than made up for it. As it was February, we didn’t get to enjoy the outdoor hotel pool or the grounds, but I would absolutely make a return trip in warmer weather, so perhaps I will check it out in the future.

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Two days of skiing was enough for our five year old, so on Sunday I instead drove her to Torrington to spend the afternoon at the children’s museum there, KidsPlay.  It was perfect for her age group, and she loved the tree house, the Legos, the music room, and these large transparent twisty pneumatic tubes: we could put colorful scarves and balls into them, and watch them go!  The pizza across the street at Sasso’s was pretty good, too.

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We left the area after it had been snowing for a few hours and the countryside was doing a full-on Currier and Ives thing…the drive was absolutely gorgeous with the snow coating the trees all over the hills.  We were back to our regular lives when the snow turned into gray and drippy rain, alas.  Goodbye, Litchfield County! We’ll be back!

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Laura LaVelle is an attorney and writer who lives in Connecticut, in a not quite 100-year-old house, along with her husband, two daughters, and a cockatiel.

Laura can be contacted at laura@newswhistle.com.

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IMAGE CREDIT

Stock Photo Courtesy of Shanshan0312 / YouTube.com – “Litchfield, Connecticut, United States. March 17th, 2018. West Cornwall Bridge, Housatonic River, Connecticut, United States.”