#1: Plymouth State University
Ask any snowboarder, of any era, from any state in New England to name the most notorious shred college on the East Coast, and you’d better prepare yourself for a wild, probably illegal story involving the snowboard Mecca that is Plymouth State. Once a college (somehow, it’s now a “University”…) known primarily for providing the East with its gym teachers, recent years have seen PSU step up the academics significantly – they’re now considered one of the top Meteorology and Earth Sciences schools in the country, in fact. But for all the attempts at educational progression, Plymouth’s student body has never wavered in its pursuit of good times – noted by ranking as Playboy’s 8th wildest party school in the nation back in 1987, and holding steady at #9 for 2010. School does happen at this lifestyle jewel of the Granite State, but it’s strictly held to the Mon-Thurs range.
The best park riding in New Hampshire is just down the road, with Loon and Waterville essentially being PSU athletic facilities. Such close proximity to the mountains makes it almost impossible not to take part in the vast snowboard community that lies at the core of the PSU student body, many of which keep the vibe going year-round. Some may reminisce about the great times of the past at the Blue Lodge (ask just about anyone who ever lived in NH about that one…), but ride a day and send a night with the kids at 14 Pleasant, and you’ll believe in the game all over again.
In short, Plymouth State is home to the most dedicated and historic community of collegiate shreds on the East Coast. If you’re looking to ride everyday, party every night, and have the time of your life while basically just pretending to attend college, then this is your new home, hands-down.
Nearby Resorts: Tenney Mountain (15 mins), Loon Mountain (30 mins), Cannon (30 mins), Waterville Valley (35 mins), Ragged Mountain (40 mins), Pats Peak (1 hour)
Snowboard Club / Team: Plymouth State Snowboard Club
Shred Alums: Lots. HCSC’s Preston Strout, Shane Flood (honorary), Luke Mathison, Noah Brandon, Jaime MacLeod, Steven “Jib” Hunt, Greg Maxwell, Chris Carr, Brian Barb, Nate Sheehan, numerous New Hampshire Dirts, and many more.
Extra Credit: Two words: “Snowboard Formal”. …It’s also worth noting that Paul Reubens (Pee-Wee Herman) went here, which helps explain how some of the creatures on this list actually got into a college…