Welcome to MILSAP! We are dedicated to collecting and publishing information about the history of lift-served ski areas in Michigan. If you have fond memories of flying down the slopes on your favorite hill, but the area has closed, let us know about it. Michigan has a long, rich history of skiing and sliding and it should not be forgotten. Please help us keep it alive by sharing your recollections, snapshots, memorabilia, news clippings, home movies, or whatever you may have that would remind you and others of the places where people used to enjoy winter in Michigan.
For more information about our site, check the About MILSAP link on the navigation bar above or at the top of our page links in the right-hand column.
Well, it’s been just over a month again since our last update and we have received news of a new lost ski area as well as 16 comments and emails of patches and pins. Ski season is rapidly approaching, so we may have a chance to get out and see some of those lost areas (or even ski them, if the are not posted).
We got an email from Mark B. Snider with a picture of a Mission Hills ski patch. Apparently, Mission Hills was an earlier name for the area we had identified as Iroquois Mountain outside of Sault Ste. Marie. If you have any information about this area, please post it on our new ski area page for Mission Hills. Mark also sent us an intriguing picture of a wall full of old ski patches. He has promised to send individual pictures when he gets home from the trip he is on.
We have also learned of a new lost ski areas website for Wisconsin! When we get a chance to check it out, we will post a link on our resources page. Good luck, guys.
Hill or Stream posted on our Sugar Loaf page that they want to know the vertical. Does anyone out there have the stats for the Loaf? Jay also commented with a news article about Sugar Loaf changing hands and we have received a couple of posts on our Facebook page recently that the Loaf that the new owner is planning to re-open it. We will keep you apprised.
On the Brady’s Hills page, Pam Mork replied to Aaron Besemer asking him if he is related to the VP of Timberlee Hills? Ken McClellan replied to Tom Fullerton on the Elbert Mountain page that the hang gliding hill is not the same as the old ski jumping hill, but is further south; you have to drive down the beach and climb it from the front. The top of the ski jumping hill can be reached from town.
Jon Mann commented about Lansing Ski Club that he attended MSU in ’79 and started teaching skiing there. He moved his teaching to Alpine Valley Michigan in ’80 and now teaches at Stevens Pass, Oregon. He tells a funny story about “borrowing” his boss’s goggles from a bench in the lodge on a snowy night when he broke his own goggles. Will Stebbins responded to Jon that his dad, Rolly, formed the club in ’48 with about 10 other guys from Lansing when they purchased the land. They lost it in bankruptcy in ’85 due to debt incurred from the over-the-top chairlift, snowmaking, and the year-round athletic club. He is writing a history of the ski area. John Baumer remembers a ski trip to LSC from Lansing Eastern HS that got him skiing all through high school. He now skis 4-5 times per week.
Bob Morris wrote on our Mt. Brighton page that his dad, Don Morris, was a patroller at Brighton in the 60’s and 70’s. He had many great times there and remembers a run called Big Riskey and a guy named Ferris Steinhauser. Bob also thanked us on the MILSAP Updates page for providing all these memories. You’re welcome, Bob.
On our Hansen Hills page, Kristen Grierson asked whatever happened to the polyhedron lodge? Anyone out there know? Dave Cook left a comment on our Avalanche Peak page that AP was the name of the area when it was owned by Boyne City. His dad, David E Cook, purchased it in ’58/’59 and renamed it Barn Mountain. A double chair was installed in ’67 and the area went to bankruptcy in ’69. Ev Kircher of Boyne bought it and eventually gave the property back to Boyne City with a covenant that it never be redeveloped for downhill skiing. Dave says there are stunning views from the top–I concur.
Mark Holston commented on the Tyrollean Hills page that he doesn’t remember the pool and the log cabin. Keith Pollock, son of the ’70s owners, replied that the pool, sauna, and rental shop were added in the ’70s. They also added night skiing and the back hills with the Poma tow.The pool was on the left side of the lodge and the ski shop and lounge in the front. The log cabin warming hut was torn down by a subsequent owner in the ’80s. The “Ford” log cabin on the banks of the Black River was dismantled and relocated outside of Otsego County.David Tubbs responded to Keith that his parents knew Keith’s and he has fond memories of the area and many of the people who owned chalets there. Susan Ayres-Genovesi commented that of the people mentioned, only the Dunnigans still own land there.
Kenneth N Collier left a comment on our Skyline page that he happened upon this area and it looked like a ghost town with vintage chairlifts with wooden seatbacks and old tow ropes and wheels still in place. A ski area where time stands still.
Please keep those comments coming to our blog and check out our Facebook page where we are also posting notices of up-coming ski swaps and sales, when we find out about them, and deals on lift tickets and passes. Soon, we hope to advise our followers about ski area openings as the weather turns more seasonably cold.
Bob Knox, Publisher
Michigan Lost Ski Areas Project