I like to drive. Even for those who don't love it, a five-hour trip is within the acceptable range of a weekend trip. Perhaps not a day trip, but thinking about winter sports and skiing in particular.

But if you don't want the hassle of a drive, you are just one or two hours in traffic from a great local ski destination.

That's right, you don't have to leave New Jersey to get some skiing in. Sussex County boasts one of the area's great reports in Vernon — Mountain Creek.

Instead of a day trip that will have you battling the ski equipment with the kids and then the long trek home after the little ones are cold and wet, stay the night or the weekend.

New Jersey has one of the best resorts for dining, staying, and local activities, Crystal Springs Resort.

Whether it's an anniversary celebration and the fine dining at one of New Jersey's top-rated restaurants, Latour, or the more casual Minerals.

Whatever your occasion, even if it's just to get away on a Friday and Saturday and ski for an afternoon, New Jersey has it all for you.

The Blizzard of '96 Revisited: Snow totals for every NJ county

The Blizzard of '96 shut down the New Jersey Turnpike for the first time in the road's history. Thousands of people were left without power and heat for days. The National Guard even had to be brought in to rescue State Troopers. Anyone in the Northeast who lived through it will never forget it.

Gallery Credit: Joe Votruba

The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Bill Spadea. Any opinions expressed are Bill's own. Bill Spadea is on the air weekdays from 6 to 10 a.m., talkin’ Jersey, taking your calls at 1-800-283-1015.

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