The Best Family Sledding Spots on Long Island
Parents with kids eager to brave the winter elements don't have to leave Long Island to find ideal sledding hills to catch some wintertime thrills. We've rounded up a host of local hills where you can challenge the powder.
Before sending kids careening down these sledding hills, be sure to check the surroundings for sticks, rocks, and other hazards. We recommend wearing helmets and proper snow gear for your sledding adventure, too.
Editor's note: While we are trying to promote safer activities that occur outdoors or with social distancing guidelines in place, please keep your family and others safe by always wearing a mask and practicing social distancing. Keep in mind, state parks are limiting parking spots as a social distancing measure, so arrive early or have an alternate destination in mind in case your chosen slope is too crowded when you arrive.
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It’s easy on the way down, but a steep climb up some of the sledding hills at Cedar Creek Park. Photo by Dara Addonizio.
Sledding Hills in Nassau County
Cedar Creek Park – Seaford
Hilly and expansive, sledders can enjoy this southeastern Nassau wonderland without feeling cramped. Sledding hills are neither too high nor too short. The absence of trees offers an unobstructed run to the bottom. Sledding hills are open in January and February, weather permitting.
Bethpage State Park – Old Bethpage
The state park opens parts of its five golf courses to sledders from December 1-March 31 as long as the sweet stuff is on the ground. It's tranquil, picturesque, and perfect for sledders of all ages and abilities. Be warned: Inflatable sleds aren’t permitted; it's steerable sleighs only. Sledding generally takes place from 9am-5pm. On the morning after a big snowfall, the park staff asks that you give it a couple of hours to clear out the parking lots before heading over. Park staff organizes sledding and asks potential visitors to call ahead.
Eisenhower Park – East Meadow
Head to "Sled Hill" near Parking Field 1 when the right amount of flakes have fallen. The hill is a wide, safe thrill for both children and adults. The park closes at dusk and is a bunny-jump away from the Northwell Health Ice Center.
Flower Hill Park – Manhasset
Easy to overlook but hard to avoid, this park is near some of the hilliest terrain in Nassau County. A local sledding favorite, the park is open from 8:30am-4:30pm daily.
Grant Park – Hewlett
This 35-acre, sports-oriented county park transforms into one of south Nassau's top sledding destinations once snow hits.
Herricks High School – New Hyde Park
Locals know the hills here as some of the best around. The high school is conveniently just off the Long Island Expressway on Shelter Rock Road.
Malverne High School field – Malverne
Who knew sledding near a flat football field could be such fun? It's safe and popular. On weekends the snow is smooth, and the field is empty, providing the perfect formula for winter fun.
An old-school saucer sled works fine on the steep hills of Newbridge Road Park. Photo courtesy of Jason Weissman
Newbridge Road Park – Bellmore
Don't let the single hill fool you: Newbridge offers a steep climb and descent, perfect for daredevils. Newbridge Road Park is open daily from 8am-7pm and is home also to Newbridge Ice Arena.
Washington Ave Park – Seaford
This popular destination is known for the steep hills around the sunken baseball fields. There are also lots of benches and restrooms for moms and dads in need of a break.
Sledding Hills in Suffolk County
Bald Hill – Farmingville
One of the highest points on Long Island, Bald Hill thrills sledders with long runs and maximum elevation. The former home of the Bald Hill Ski Bowl is easily accessible, less than a mile from LIE Exit 63.
Belmont Lake State Park – North Babylon
This 463-acre state park is perfect for novices, but avoid the hills near the large lake. It is open from 7am-5pm daily.
The Grange – Sayville
A gentle hill, perfect for beginners, the Grange is a popular choice for families who live in an otherwise flat part of southern Suffolk County.
Herrman Griem Park – Wheatley Heights
The hills here are a popular place to swoosh and slide. The park also offers restrooms and free Wi-Fi access.
Heckscher Park – Huntington
This park is a small space, but residents of northwest Suffolk swear by its steep hills and lengthy runs. Four trees dot the primary run, forming ideal lane dividers.
Hoyt Farm Nature Preserve – Commack
A popular warm-weather destination in the Town of Smithtown, savvy locals know it's paradise for dedicated sledders come the winter. It is open from 9am to dusk daily. As soon as you pull into the parking lot, you will see kids sledding right on the front field. The park is open to Smithtown residents and their guests only.
Mattituck High School – Mattituck
North Forkers have flocked here for generations, but be wary of the traffic as you cross the region's busiest street.
Southampton Youth Services Rec Center – Southampton
This expansive property in the Hamptons is set off from busy streets and ideal for young children. It is open from 7am-8pm Mondays-Thursdays; 7am-7pm on Fridays; and 8am-5pm on weekends.
Wicks Road Park – Commack
There are a number of potential destinations in Commack, but steep elevation changes near the community Little League field make this a favorite.
Of course, there are plenty more potential sledding hills across Nassau and Suffolk counties. Most area parks have FREE parking and are open as the weather permits. Some have accumulation rules, so call in advance before you bundle up the kids and head over.
This article, first published in 2013, is updated annually.