You might associate Massanutten Resort with careening down black diamond ski trails or taking on the hills with a snow tube, but there is lots of fun to be had before the first flake falls. A fall getaway to this family resort near Harrisonburg delivers a fabulous time even without any of the powder.
This season, the same chairlift that delivers you to the top of your favorite trail offers scenic rides to the historic Massanutten Peak, where you can breathe in the fresh mountain air and take in a panoramic view of the area; pack a lunch, then board Chairlift #4 from the Ski Lodge, and transfer to Chairlight #6 for a ride to the peak. Other low-key one-with-nature experiences include exploring the Hopkins Park Arboretum, sketching and journaling in the wilderness and hiking to explore Kaylor’s Knob Trail and the Western Slope.
“The Shenandoah Valley is famous for having some of the best fall colors and foliage, it’s one of our favorite times of year at Massanutten Resort, [and] there isn’t a better time to enjoy our outdoor adventures,” says Sarah Elson, director of business relations. “Our spacious townhome-style accommodations [offer] ample opportunity to stretch out and relax with fully equipped kitchens and gorgeous views.”
If you are an adrenaline junkie, book a session at the property’s new Ridge Rappel and Climbing Excursion, which starts with a chairlift ride to Massanutten Peak. After a short hike to the rappelling location and a safety briefing from your guide, you’ll experience a breathtaking 38-foot and 58-foot rappel. Stop at the scenic overlook for a quick break for a drink and snack, then try your hand at two Class 5 rock climbing routes with the help of professionally-trained guides. Once you are back on terra firma, hike back to the Massanutten Peak to relax and recover before riding the chairlift back to the resort; it’s also a great chance to leaf peep at the fall foliage and try to spot local wildlife.
If the weather is cold, rainy or otherwise less ideal for outdoor pursuits, there are plenty of other activities this fall. Their newest escape room, Mayday, is now open, with a theme of global adventures in exotic locales with multiple virtual reality stations and racing simulators. Work with the other players to seal the doors of a submarine before it’s claimed by the ocean, search for a mysterious jewel on Zanzibar or rescue someone captive on Voodoo Island. Art class offerings include DIY tie-dye or nature-themed t-shirts, a painting class with Virginia wines, jewelry making and hand-painted glassware, and there are two ukulele classes depending on your playing ability.
And, after all that exertion (or not), you can always book a verde olive oil salt scrub and massage at the spa to get your skin in tip top shape for the cold, dry months to come. End your crisp fall days fireside with live music and dinner at the Campfire Grill, which serves up comfort food like handcrafted pizzas, camp stove chili, chicken dumplings, skillets, steakhouse burgers and of course, s’mores, all with a mountain backdrop. Who needs snow?
For more information on a fall sojourn at Massanutten, including safety precautions that are in place, check out their website.
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