When the temperatures drop in November/December, and Jack Frost gets to work in the Methow, it is time to pull out your ice skates.
Winthrop's Outdoor Ice Rink
The town of Winthrop is home to the Winthrop Ice and Sports Rink, an outdoor ice rink that offers open skating, pick-up hockey, and figure skating every cold day of the winter. The rink usually opens just in time for the holidays, but if it is cold, even earlier. Most weekend and holiday nights, visitors can enjoy skating, music and a rink-side fire to hang out by. Check the ice schedule at the Winthrop Ice and Sports Rink website. Rentals and day passes are affordable, and the indoor, upstairs viewing room allows the non-skating members of your party to enjoy the experience from a comfortable vista.
Some winters, even before the ski trails are open, a strange phenomena occurs in the Valley. Locals can't be found at work or their usual hang-outs, the streets are empty, and school children appear extra-antsy for the bell to ring at the end of the day. That's because Patterson and Pearrygin Lakes (and even some of the higher alpine lakes) are frozen solid, and the whole community seems to appear on those magical days of lake-skating in the crisp sunny air. Take home message - bring your skates, because you never know what nature might provide.