Top 8 Deep Creek Lake Winter Activities for Non-Skiers

It’s a common conundrum – what’s a non-skier to do when friends and family are hitting the slopes at Wisp Resort?  Deep Creek Lake winter activities offers lots of options that can keep every member of your crew entertained.  It’s a great way to enjoy a weekend getaway near Pittsburgh, Baltimore, or Washington, DC.

Here are just a few of our favorite activities for the non-skiers staying at a Deep Creek Lake vacation rental:

Activities for Non-Skiers

Hiking at Swallow Falls State Park
Crisp white snow makes this beautiful place even more spectacular, and it’s definitely a must see throughout all four seasons.  If you’re up for some serious hiking, explore trails to all three of the waterfalls – Swallow Falls, Muddy Creek Falls, and Tolliver Falls.  There is also a handicap accessible trail and view platform at Muddy Creek Falls for those that need an easier route or just want to take a short stroll.   Be sure to bring your camera and wear sturdy hiking shoes or boots.  Trails can be slippery during the winter months.  Get more info.

Guided Snowshoe Tours
Weather permitting, All Earth Eco Tours offers another great way to experience Swallow Falls State Park.   Their snowshoe tours are a “no experience required” way to cruise through the woods and take in the scenery.  For those seeking high adventure, ask about their trips to Big Savage Mountain and Lost Lands.
Sleigh Rides at Deep Creek Lake

Sleigh Rides
Take a ride back in time as you swish through open fields and over hills listening to the sound of muffled hoof beats in the snow.  Sleigh rides at Pleasant Valley Dream Rides are an ideal way to enjoy the outdoors no matter what your age.

Sled Riding at Blackwater Falls State Park
Within one hour of the Deep Creek Lake area, you’ll find the ultimate sledding hill!  Head to Blackwater Falls State Park to ride up on a conveyor, sled to the bottom, and repeat!  Bring your own sled or rent one on-site.

Cross Country Skiing
With minimal instruction, you can kick and glide on cross country ski trails at Wisp Resort, Herrington Manor State Park, and New Germany State Park.  Rental equipment is available at each location, and Wisp offers intro lessons as well.

Shops & Antiques
Avoid the cold temperatures when you visit area shops and antique stores.  Schoolhouse Earth, Bear Creek Traders, and High Mountain Sports are a few of our favorites at the lake.  Take a short drive to Oakland to browse antiques at Englander’s or Cabin Fever.

Museum Tours
While you’re in downtown Oakland, history buffs should stop at the two museums operated by the Garrett County Historical Society.  Return to the past as you explore area treasures, learn about early settlers, and check out Model T Fords.

Deep Creek Lake Discovery Center
Fun for kids of all ages, the Discovery Center is a one-of-a-kind environmental center with hands-on exhibits that showcase the natural resources of Western Maryland.  Children can enjoy special programs each weekend like pine cone bird feeder making or feeding some of the resident critters.

Wisp Ski Resort~ A Little Look Back!

Today’s snow making equipment

As I sit here daydreaming & staring out my office window, I can’t help but watch the people zig-zag their way down the ski slopes. For the most part, they all seem to be floating gracefully although on occasion you will witness a bit of a crash and burn. As we here at Taylor-Made Deep Creek Vacations & Sales gear up for another busy weekend, we can’t help but feel proud that so many people have chosen Deep Creek Lake as their choice for a weekend winter getaway! Granted, our location is key since we are only a mere 3-4 hours away from Washington D.C and 2 ½ from Pittsburgh. However, most come to enjoy the outdoor adventures that our area has to offer. While hiking and snow shoeing are my preferred activity choices, most come to spend the weekend at Wisp Ski Resort which offers skiing, snowboarding, snow tubing, ice skating and more!

Helmuth “Ace” Heise

It is with this thought that I can’t help but think of how this all came about because one man had a dream to make Deep Creek Lake a four season resort. Helmuth “Ace” Heise began vacationing with his parents and sister at Deep Creek Lake in the 1930s. He and his wife, Evelyn, later went on to buy property and construct a year round 10 unit motel. After noticing that there was very little money to be made in the winter months, Ace knew he needed to find a way to attract guests to this area for potential winter sports. He along with some other local business men formed Recreational Industries, Inc. and leased a farm pasture on Marsh Mountain. Winter skiing began the winter of 1955-1956 with one ski slope of which the skiers were pulled to the top of the mountain via a rope tow. The “Lodge” at the time was a one room hut warmed by a coal fired potbellied stove. The ski equipment was rented out of the bed of a pick-up truck. But, people came. Over the next decade, Mr. Heise went on to add additional slopes and lifts and even purchased state of the art snow making equipment (which at the time resembled lawn sprinklers that spat out pellets of frozen water). Wisp continued to grow and improve and as of today has over 34 slopes located on 172 acres. The lawn sprinklers have since been replaced by the world’s most energy efficient snowmaking equipment with computerized weather and pumping stations. Of course, over the years, they also added the snow tubing park, ice skating rink, and more! Again, this started because one man knew how to tun his dream into realty. Although Mr. Heise is no longer with us, we owe him a big thank you for helping make Deep Creek Lake a vacation destination all year long.


Vintage Wisp Lodge


With that being said, the sun is shining, the temperatures are warming up and Wisp is ready for the weekend! We can’t wait to see you at the lake! #skiwisp #winterwonderland #deepcreeklake #dreamsintorealty #AceHeise