Winterfest at Ohiopyle State Park

A two-horse open sleigh takes passengers for a ride at Winterfest.
A two-horse open sleigh takes passengers for a ride at Winterfest.

Winterfest at Ohiopyle State Park is a celebration of outdoor winter activities in one of the most picturesque locations in the Laurel Highlands of Western PA.

I’ve attended several times with my daughter, so I thought I’d put together some helpful tips of what to expect, as well as ideas for additional winter activities you might enjoy while you’re in Ohiopyle.


Winterfest FAQ’s

When is Winterfest at Ohiopyle State Park?

Winterfest will be held Saturday, February 5, 2022 from 11:00am to 4:00pm.

Where is Winterfest at Ohiopyle State Park

The bulk of the activities take place at the Sugarloaf sledding area along Sugarloaf Road, 4 miles southeast of the town of Ohiopyle.A map showing the location of Winterfest at Ohiopyle State Park along Sugarloaf Road.

Can I use my navigation system to find the Sugarloaf sledding area?

Yes – use GPS coordinates 39.832044, -79.458148.

Are there restrooms available at Winterfest?

Yes – there are restrooms at the Sugarloaf sledding area, as well as at the Visitors Center in Ohiopyle itself.

Are food and drinks available at Winterfest?

Yes – there will be a food truck near the warming hut at the Sugarloaf sledding area.

What activities are available at Winterfest?

Sled riding, sleigh riding, snow shoeing, cross-country skiing, and self-guided hiking/sightseeing.

What does Winterfest cost?

Sled riding: free (bring your own sled).
Sleigh rides: donation
Snow shoeing: bring your own or free loaners available.
Cross-country skiing: bring your own or free loaners available.

Where do I go if I want to try cross country skiing at Winterfest?

Cross country skiing will be available at the Train Station in Ohiopyle (skiing starts at 11:00am and 1:30pm, first come, first served for both sessions).

Where do I go if I want to try snowshoeing at Winterfest?

Snowshoeing will be available at the Kentuck Campground Amphitheater (snowshoe loaners available first-come-first-served from 11am-2:30pm).


Sled Riding at Winterfest

An adult sled rider tests his luck on the Sugarloaf sledding hill at Winterfest.
An adult sled rider tests his luck on the Sugarloaf sledding hill at Winterfest.

The most popular activity at Winterfest at Ohiopyle State Park always seems to be sled riding.

A sled rider displaying the head-first technique at Winterfest.
A sled rider displaying the head-first technique at Winterfest.

Young and old alike take their turns flying down Sugarloaf Knob.

A sled rider wipes out at Winterfest.
A sled rider wipes out at Winterfest.

As with auto racing, the most exciting part as a spectator is some of the spectacular wipeouts!

My daughter after a successful run down the Sugarloaf sledding hill at Winterfest.
My daughter after a successful run down the Sugarloaf sledding hill at Winterfest.

There is no cost to sled ride, and you can take as many turns as you like. You do need to bring your own sled though.


Sleigh Riding at Winterfest

Sleigh rides are another popular draw at Winterfest at Ohiopyle State Park.

The sleigh gets ready to depart from near the base of the Sugarloaf sledding hill.
The sleigh gets ready to depart from near the base of the Sugarloaf sledding hill.

The rides depart from and return to the parking area at the Sugarloaf sledding area.

The view from a sleigh ride at Winterfest at Ohiopyle State Park.
The view from a sleigh ride at Winterfest at Ohiopyle State Park.

And if you have a horse lover in your family, it’s a chance to get a close-up look at the majestic Percherons that pull the sleigh.

Haille getting to know one of the Percherons at Winterfest.
Getting to know one of the Percherons at Winterfest.

Sightseeing at Winterfest

While not “official” Winterfest events, this is an excellent opportunity to see some of Ohiopyle State Park’s most magnificent sights in snowy conditions.

The snow covered Great Allegheny Passage as it passes over the High Bridge at Ohiopyle State Park
The High Bridge along the Great Allegheny Passage at Ohiopyle State Park.

Baughman Rock Overlook is just down the road from the Sugarloaf sledding area

Taking in the view from Baughman Rock Vista during Winterfest.
Taking in the view from Baughman Rock Overlook.

Cucumber Falls is another close-by attraction that looks particularly stunning in the winter.

Checking out Cucumber Falls during Winterfest at Ohiopyle State Park.
Visiting Cucumber Falls.

And of course the namesake Ohiopyle Falls are a worthwhile stop at Winterfest.

Hiking to Ohiopyle Falls along the Ferncliff Trail while attending Winterfest at Ohiopyle State Park.
Hiking to Ohiopyle Falls along the Ferncliff Trail.

Finally, I’d suggest a quick drive up Route 381 to tour the grounds at Fallingwater, especially if you’ve never been there in the winter.

Fallingwater as seen from the "Classic View" on the Visitor Center map.
Fallingwater in Fayette County.

Final Thoughts about Winterfest

I’ve never had less than a great time at Winterfest at Ohiopyle State Park.

Percherons pulling a sleigh at WInterfest at Ohiopyle State Park.
Percherons pulling a sleigh at Winterfest at Ohiopyle State Park.

Surrounded by fellow outdoor enthusiasts in one of the grandest of all Pennsylvania state parks, it’s hard to imagine a better way to spend a winter afternoon!

The author and daughter at Baughman Rock Overlook during Winterfest.
The author and daughter at Baughman Rock Overlook.

So round up your friends and family and head out to Winterfest at Ohiopyle State Park – you’ll be glad you did!

Rusty Glessner at Cucumber Falls in winter.
The author at Cucumber Falls after fresh snowfall.

10 Must-See Winter Attractions in the PA Laurel Highlands is your guide to some of the best winter attractions in Pennsylvania!

Winter at Lower Humbert Covered Bridge in Somerset County Pennsylvania
Winter at Lower Humbert Covered Bridge in Somerset County, Pennsylvania.

The Laurel Highlands spans 3,000 square miles of Fayette, Somerset and Westmoreland Counties, and is one of the snowiest regions in PA!

The author at Beam Rocks Overlook on a snowy day.
The author at Beam Rocks Overlook on a snowy day in the Laurel Highlands.

Looking for a place to call home during your stay in Ohiopyle?

Discover Ohiopyle offers an array of rustic cottages and cabins, luxurious honeymoon spots and retreats, hotels, campgrounds, and even more unique options, like tree houses!

An Ohiopyle vacation rental available through Discover Ohiopyle.
Photo courtesy of Discover Ohiopyle.

If you’re looking for an Ohiopyle lodging experience like no other, look no further than Discover Ohiopyle.

An Ohiopyle vacation rental home available through Discover Ohiopyle.
Photo courtesy of Discover Ohiopyle.

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Rusty Glessner is a professional photographer, lifelong Pennsylvanian, and creator of the PA Bucket List travel blog.