MILSAP Updates, May 30, 2017

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.

LATEST UPDATES

Hi. As I promised a couple weeks ago, I have gone through my E-mail and started working on the items sent to me over the past few months.

Ed Kovak sent pictures of Snow Valley and Mt. Frederick brochures which are now posted on those pages. The Mt. Frederick brochure has a picture of Jodie Almon, daughter of Al and Stevie, who contacted me a few weeks ago; I hope she sees it.

Bill Jamerson sent along a DVD copy of his movie, Winter Wonderland — Michigan’s Golden Age of Skiing, which aired on Michigan Public Television in 1995. It starts with ski jumping in the UP, covers the rise of winter sports parks in the 1920’s, and the development of downhill skiing in the 1940’s, 50’s and 60’s. It has great archival footage of Boyne mountain, Otsego, Caberfae, Pine Mountain, and Mt. Holly. I will see if I can excerpt a few clips to publish here on the blog. If you are interested in a copy of this great video, it is available for $20.00 plus $4.00 S&H from William Jamerson, PO Box 792, Escanaba, MI 49892. His website is http://www.billjamerson.com.

Casey Buckleitner sent along a great picture of the skiing page from the Detroit Free Press for January 6, 1961. It lists 74 areas open for skiing that year. It also had an ad for Mission Hill touting their lodging, double chairlift and lots of snow, confirming that the area was open under that name into the 1960’s.

Mark B. Snider sent a picture of his collection of Michigan ski patches and one pin. I have asked him to sent individual pictures of each of them as I do not have most of them in the MILSAP collection. He did sent along one great picture of a Mission Hill patch which was one of our original clues to the existence of an area operated by the Lakeshore Ski Club under that name before it became Iroquois Mountain.

Terry Edwards, former ski writer for the Detroit Free Press in the 1960’s and a founding member of the Metro Detroit Ski Council, sent along a BIG box of  clippings, press releases, photos brochures, etc. from her years in the business. It will take me some time(!) to sift through it all, but we will be publishing many items from this collection and will keep you apprised.

Please keep those reminiscences coming in the form of comments on our pages, posts to our Facebook page and emails to milsap@comcast.net. We love to hear what you have to say.

Bob Knox, Publisher
Michigan Lost Ski Areas Project

Posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments

MILSAP Updates, May 15, 2017

Hello there. It has been way too long since I posted an update, but I was on vacation with limited Internet access and when I returned there always seemed to be too many things to do. Well, enough excuses, there have been 32 comments in the last 3 months.

Amanda requested that Jeremy contact her about the Mackinac College Ski Slopes. She is working on a piece for “The Ski Journal,” a publication based in western Washington. Chuck Chaltron said he has an original road sign from Snow Bowl. He picked it up years ago while hunting, the day he got his first (and only) deer. We asked him to send us a picture. Paul said he has some old 8mm of his grandparents at Snow Bowl. He has transferred it to DVD.

Sean Lorbeske said that he explored Skyline on snowmobile with a friend this past winter and visited our site while researching the history of the area. Erich from the city of Grayling Zoning Department sent a request to Bob Sisco to forward any pictures he has from Skyline to use in a presentation they are developing to market the property. He posted an email link to the department.

Max R. Thiele left long, historical comments on both the Pinnacles and Tyrolean Hills pages. He also asked if anyone has pictures of the log lodge. Paul Ferszt wants to know is anyone remembers a waitress at Tyrollean Hills named Cheri.

Anne S. said she worked at the nursery at Sugar Loaf for the last 4 seasons it was open. She said she would look for pictures and would send them along if she finds them. Matthew Heinemann replied to Larry on the Sylvan Knob page. He said his family skied there in the ’60s and ’70s. The kids had to buy their $60 season pass. He remembers great hamburgers, fun slopes and jumps, and good times!

Bill Panzika commented to Dave on the Royal Valley page that he used to patrol with Dave and his dad. David Siekman left a reply. Ed Kobak replied to Jody Almon Seward on the Mt. Frederic page that he has an old brochure with a picture of her. He sent pictures to me and I will post them soon.

Tracey Sanders provided her contact information to Karen on the Mt. Grampian page. Mark Kimmerly requested pictures of Silver Bell. Dave Sherwood posted a link to a list of all the rock groups that performed at Silver Bell from the Motor City Music Archives. Detroit57 said he skied Silver Bell once in the ’65-’67 time frame. He recalled that it has about 125′ of vertical with two or three chairlifts, two T-bars and ropes. he said it faced away from M-24.

Michael Sleep found a picture of a painting of a ski jump at Caberfae from 1938 by Carlos Lopez, a professor at U of M. Old Goats and Nannies reminisced that he worked with Everett to build the golf course at Boyne Mountain. Dan Montgomery said he grew up skiing at Thunder where his dad was on the ski patrol. Bruce Clapp remembers that before it closed, Thunder was only open on weekends, so if there was a good snow week you could get great powder runs on the un-groomed trails first thing Saturday morning, then head over to ski Boyne Mountain on the same pass when the runs packed out. Michael Smith also skied Thunder. He sprained an ankle on Pico and then a knee on Sun Valley and wishes the deed restrictions would come off.

Doug Joy said he started skiing at Mott Mountain in the early ’60s. There were 2 ropes and he had to ride behind a “grown up” or a “bigger kid” because he wasn’t strong enough to hold the rope up by himself. Barb Kent said she skied at Snow Valley between ’55 and ’58.

Adez7 replied to Denise on the Fonro page that he remembers two men and one woman on the ski patrol: Tom Straley was in charge and he (the writer) was Tris Harkless. The woman was Olivia. He also remembers Tom Brost. Rhonda skied at Fonro in the early ’60s. Her last name was Lee and her uncle Harlan Brost and cousin Don Brost helped run the lodge. Susan Edwards said her family used to rent an A-frame at Cole Creek over Xmas break and she would ski all day on the two hills.

Bob Felton says he currently owns the property at Glacier Hills, he bought it in ’98 and built two homes there. The one at the bottom is a vacation rental with VRBO.com, and he lives in the one at the top. The Poma bases and rope remains are still visible. Eric Harder remembers racing at the Lansing Ski Club.

I have several items that you have sent by email to post on the site and I have also received a whole box of information by mail with many, many brochures and press releases from the ’50s and ’60s. I will get this information sorted and posted soon, I hope. We are still hoping to hear any information about a possible lost ski area named Thornapple. In the mean time, we hope you have been enjoying the discussions on our pages and please keep those comments coming to our blog and our Facebook page.

Bob Knox, Publisher
Michigan Lost Ski Areas Project

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

MILSAP Updates, February 14, 2017

Happy Valentine’s Day! It has been over 7 weeks since our last update and there has been a lot of activity on the blog and on our Facebook page. We have received 63 comments during that period, including 31 just about Fonro, with 4 more about the Lansing Ski Club and another 5 relating to Kandahar. We also have a new “lost” ski area: Mt. Kimberly, and are looking for another: Thornapple.

Mike Potter made a bold claim to more time on the hill at Lansing Ski Club than anyone! He skied there from the time he was 3 almost every season day, and later, night until it closed. He was into freestyle: moguls, aerials,  ballet, and later into racing. he went on to become a pro racer and raced against some of his Wild World of Sports childhood heroes. Eric Harder went to E. Lansing high and raced at LSC. Bob Ucman replied to Win Stebbins on the LSC thread “Hi Win,” and to Jan Harold Brumvand “Hi, we met on a lift at Snowbird.” Gary Goodridge worked there as a lifter in ’76 with some of his freshman dorm-mates.He says the job was boring, watching the chairs go by, but the end-of-season party was great, with traying down the hill.

Richard Laws commented that he remembers skiing at Middleville Ski Area with his 6th grade class in 1980, but that it was closed by 1989. Michael S. Jaskulski commented on Lost Pines Lodge that he was never there in winter but he remembers stables and horseback riding in ’70 or ’71. H. D. Laursen says he visited Big M while in HS. he never learned to ski, but he met his Sr. Prom date there when she broke her leg and he carried her books between classes for the rest of the year. Sam Seven reminded us that Pando has been closed for two years since Cannonsburg bought it, but says they have been re-modelling the lodge and hope to re-open next year. Timothy Thoits asks if anyone has heard of an area called Thornapple owned by Bill Seidman?

Kate Villereal commented on the Thunder Mountain thread that Tim taught her how to use the T-bar and Poma lifts. She then graduated to the slope next to the beginners slope where she was run over by the groomer. Her dad rescued her and took her to the hospital to be checked out (she was okay) and while the were there her brother was also brought to the hospital, quite a day! Robert Mogford wrote that in 1990 or ’91, Warren bought the old yellow lift from Nub’s and installed it at Mt. Holiday. Mark James said that his family had season passes for Schuss Mountain from ’68-’73, but one day when his dad was sick, they went down the road to Mt. Maplehurst. It was not much of a challenge.

Katrina Gross commented on Mott Mountain that she learned to ski there in 1971-73 on the rope and the chairlift. Dave Cox wrote on the Irish Hills thread that he went there several times with his family of 8 when the Toledo Blade offered a ski and lesson special of $10 per family-they couldn’t pass up the bargain. He said it is now a housing development. Jean replied to Dave that it is sad, but the memories of those days are great.

Jody Almon Seward commented on both Mt. Frederic and Ski Village threads that she is Al Almon’s daughter and wants to know what information we would like about those areas associated with her father. Primarily, we would like to know when the areas opened and closed, how many lifts and slopes they had during those years, and any interesting stories about their operation.

Mike posted on the Fonro thread that he would like more information about the airport. Danny P. Pfaff commented that the band that played there was “The Slick City Rockers” from Traverse City. he also said that his dad and uncle helped build the lodge and that his brother, Brian, worked there in the ’70s. Karen Giradot replied to Hope Suddon that she remembered her parents Art and Marion and her Grandfather Jules. He also replied to Karen Giradot as did several others that the family name was Suddon and they had 14 children. He wrote to David Fons that Danny’s father, Wayne, helped build the lodge and roofed the Tepee. Candice Van Nort replied to David that she had been to their home when his sister had a compound fracture.

Angie replied to Karen Giradot on the Fonro page that a few Suddons still live in the area. Dawn Fredrickson also told her that Carol lives in town across from the party store. Kathy told Karen that Art and Marion Suddon were her uncle and aunt. Hope Suddon replied to Karen that there were 14 children and some still live in Comins. Tony, Morgan, B Ballard, and Robin (Suddon) Ballard all replied to Karen that there were 14 chuildren, 7 boys and 7 girls, with Robin naming them.

Ted Duckworth posted in the Fonro thread that “all the stories about Fonro are true.” He said his great uncle Art Suddon was bartender there and Ted’s first job was there in ’77-78, the year it bacame Cole Creek Lodge. Robert Emig and Morgan replied to Preston that it is on Emig Rd. 1 mi. E of M-33.  Denise Peters Smith recalled that she loved going there in the ’70s and that her wedding reception was at Fonro. Robert Hink reported that his family owned a neighboring property. Mary Jones noted that she and her mother moved to the area in ’62. Her mom cooked and tended bar there and took reservations. Mary led horseback trail rides and helped with the snowmobiles. Jenny Balmer commented that when she was a waitress in the restaurant in the ’70s, she could make $60/night in tips–a lot of money in those days.

Mike and Marion Taylor have lived in Comins for 60 years and posted a detailed history of  the Fonro property over the past 35 years. They note that Fonro had horseback riding and snowmobiling and as Cold Creek Lodge had a regulation Trap and Skeet range. Their post is very comprehensive–you will have to read it if you want all the details. Denise thanked them for all the history.

Nathan Kurtz wrote on the Kandahar thread that he grew up across the street and his family all had great times there. Mary Ann Carrigan-Stadler echoed that, saying she likely ate more meals at Kandahar than at home. She remembers that when they called last run, she and her friends would put on their packs, go up the Poma and ski down Intermediate and across the road where they would stick their skis in the snow and go inside to make pizza. Heidi Harrison Brown remembers the great times skiing, sledding (sometimes down the ski jump) and swinging on the Poma poles and misses all the wonderful friends she made. Stephanie Martin Storhl remembers those days because of the pictures of the ski jump that were posted.

Daryl Turcott posted a link to a video of Silver Bell as it is now. Tim Gardner remembered being snowed in at Silver Bell for 2 days after the blizzard of ’67.

Robert Leopard commented on Black Mountain that he skied there once or twice. he said the ridge was steep, but not high and the ropes offered little variety in contrast to Sylvan. Robert also commented on The Pinnacles that his family had a membership in the ’60s or ’70s because it was closer to Alpena than Sylvan. He remembers the ski rental was run by Tom Staley from Alpena who was a former Olympic skier. He says the area is located at 45,05’04.5″N28,04.4″W. Tim Finn commented about Mt. Maria that his family skied there coming up from Detroit. He said the lodge had the perfect rustic ski atmosphere.

Our new “lost” ski area is Mt. Kimberly in Gogebic County in the UP. Anthony Grudnoski reports that it was open in the late ’50s. He said the ironwood Daily Globe listed it as open on Feb 21, 1957 along with Mt. Zion and Porcupine Mountains. He also found in the Wakefield News on September 24, 1969, that the Marenisco Twp board voted to discontinue operation of the ski area.

In the mean time, we hope you have been enjoying our Michigan ski season and please keep those comments coming to our blog and our Facebook page.

Bob Knox, Publisher
Michigan Lost Ski Areas Project

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

MILSAP Updates, December 23, 2016

 

Well, it’s been 5 weeks since our last post and the holidays are almost here! It is finally Winter and for the past week or two, the weather has been suitably wintry. Last month we learned of a new, lost area, and this month we have another new one and the possibility of a third! Merry Christmas to us. We have also received 14 new comments on our pages and a slew of activity on our Facebook page.

Our new area came from a Facebook post–Russell’s Ridge near Hart. It was mentioned in a post on Facebook and confirmed by an article in the Detroit Free Press dated October 27, 1968 which listed it as a new area scheduled to open that season. Another Facebook comment seemed to indicate it was closed in the winter of 1970, so perhaps it didn’t last long. If you know anything about skiing at Russell’s Ridge, please help us out.

Daryl Turcott replied to Trish Ellis on the Mt. Grampian page that he knew Marty, Marylou, and Elizabeth Ellis and lived down the street. Marc replied to Brad “Hoser” Miller on the Mott Mountain page that he just drove by the area today (11/18) and thought it was a cool place. Terry Feldman Keatley commented about Apple Mountain that she broke her leg there when she was 10 (51 years ago). She remembers skiing with her sisters, apples, cider, warm donuts and the slopes. Now lived in Colorado where the slopes are on mountains. Craig Bronson commented about Kandahar that he remembers breaking a leg on Chicken Ridge, his favorite hill was Apache (before they widened it) and he remembers crock-pots plugged in all over and stealing dad’s beer from the snowbank.

Jay commented on our Sugar Loaf page that there is a new owner. There were a number of announcements on Facebook that the may have plans to re-open it as a 4-season resort. However, on a tour of the property, he announced that “hammers will not swing” for at least two years. We look forward to returning the Loaf to our list of Current Ski Areas as soon as possible.

Bob asked on our Thunder Mountain page when it opened and if Herb Walker was the first manager. Bill Behse replied that it opened in ’57 and Joe and Donna Behse, the principal owners were the first managers. Eric Harder replied to Will Stebbins on the Lansing Ski Club page that Mr. Stebbins took him and Chuck Yost on a ski trip to the UP in the ’60s. Eric remembers learning to ski at LSC with Tom Green.

Bob Wiest says he skis at Big M a few times every year; he uses the x/c trails to access the slopes. It’s a blast to ski the hills on the newer fat nordic skis, telemark style, although you can also use regular x/c gear or snowshoes. Chris Morely replied to Ben Dancer on the Skyline page that he remembers going with Ben to Mike Russell’s ski camp in Tennesee. Jessica Hartlein commented on the Tyrollean Hills page that the log cabin was at the bottom of the chairlift, but has been gone for 10 or 20 years. She thinks the pool was filled in. Terry Edwards replied to kapollock asking if she remembered Snow Valley.

Terry also commented on our Brighton Ski Jumps page that in 1958, Steamboar Springs was celebrating an anniversary. They were looking for people who had won competitions there in days past. Terry located Henry and Clarence Hall, famous jumpers from Detroit and the UP. Henry had set a record at Steamboat many years before. The Ford Ski Club sponsored the brothers’ trip to Steamboat and henry took his jumping skis. They wouldn’t let him jump on the Holmenkollen jump where he had set his record, but his did jump on a practice jump.

Finally, Rex replied to Kyle V on the Bald Eagle page that his family owned property on Herringbone Ridge in Clarkston. He wondered it that was the same area as Bald Eagle. Can anyone help with this? Do we have another lost area in SE Michigan? Please let us know.

In the mean time, we hope everyone has a happy, snowy Holiday Season and thinks about the good times they may have enjoyed at Michigan ski areas in days gone by.

Bob Knox, Publisher
Michigan Lost Ski Areas Project

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

MILSAP Updates, November 15, 2016

 

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

 

 

 

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

MILSAP Updates, October 11, 2016

 

It has been a little over a month since our last post and we have received 15 new comments on our site and a LOT of emails, some with pictures, from Robert Sisco. Some of his emails with pictures have come through without the pictures, so we haven’t posted them yet, although other pictures have been received just fine. We are working to resolve the problem.

As our Michigan foliage changes color and the prettiest part of autumn descends upon our state, we look forward to a new season of snowsports even as we sit around the fireplace and reflect on winters long past and ski areas long remembered.

David Tubbs commented a reply to susangenovesi on our Tyrollean Hills page that he wants to sell a lot at the old ski area. Jessica Hertlein also sent a reply to Renee on the same page. Ted Perreault asked on the Fonro page if the Ro in Fonro stood for Ronains? He mentioned that in addition to skiingat Fonro, he often skied at Mt. Holly with the Shrine HS ski club (and that he still skis regularly at Mt. Holly). David Fons replied to Ted that the Ro in Fonro stood for Don Rosenbach who was a partner with Jerry and Wally Fons. He noted that the Rosenbachs were great supporters of Shrine HS. He also corrected Art and Marion’s last name to Suddon, not Sutton. Dan Boyer commented on the Mio Mountain page that the area is NOT for sale, but if you have about $1.5 million too invest to reopen it, he would like to hear from you.

John Roeser said on the Brady’s Hills page that in 1956 he made trips there with the Grand Rapids junior high ski club and remembers “boot-packing” the hill by sidestepping in the mornings after a big snowfall. (I remember doing this at Snow Valley in the late 60’s). He later joined the ski patrol at Boyne and then opened a ski shop at Vail. Judy Weighman Daines said that she and her friend Deb went to Timberline every weekend and that’s where she learned all her skills. Suzanne Carpenter commented that her family skied at Big M throughout the ’60’s. Her dad and uncle owned it for part of that time. She remembers the rope tow, her first ride up the t-bar, polka music on the speakers, great burgers and the big fireplace.

Bob Sisco commented on several pages that he emailed pictures, including Grayling Winter Sports Park, Skyline, Misaukee Mountain, and Echo Valley. Unfortunately, except for Echo Valley, the emails came through without the pictures. I have added a new gallery to the Echo Valley page with some of the pictures he sent of his trip there with his grandsons.They have a great display in the lodge of ole picture and news clippings of skiing there and especially ski jumping, as well as old equipment (skis and even an old bobsled!). Bob has resent some of the pictures and they are now coming through. We will add more to the site as I get them sorted out.

Denise Bosbous asked about the lake Shore Ski Club if it ever had a ski jump. I have no information about that, but many early area, particularly in the UP dis have jumps, so it is a possibility. If you know anything about a ski jump or “ski slide” at Lake Shore, please let us know with a comment or an email.

By the way, in a clipping on the wall at Echo Valley, Bob Sisco saw a mention of an area called MadCap in the Cadillac area. We had not hears of MadCap before. If you know anything about skiing at MadCap, please let us know that, too, so we can add it to our list of lost ski areas.

Please keep those comments coming to our blog and check out our Facebook page where we are also posting notices about upcoming ski sales and ski swaps, when we find out about them. We love to hear more about the old days (and modern days) of skiing in Michigan. But now that summer is long gone and the foliage is changing color form shades of green to yellows, golds, and reds you can start anticipating the coming ski season. The early projections are for COLD and SNOW due to the water temperatures in the Pacific.

Bob Knox, Publisher
Michigan Lost Ski Areas Project

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

MILSAP Updates, September 6, 2016

Another three months (almost) since the last post. Where does the time go? We have had 19 comments left for you since the beginning of July, many of them replies to other comments on the same ski areas. We love to see those exchanges about old friends and old times.

One of our more popular areas this summer has been Tyrolean Hills. Renee M replied to Susan and Jessica about grandparents and friends. Susan Genovesi replied to Renee about the old days. Keith Pollock replied to Eric that he would have liked to be there for Alpenfest. Susan Ayres Genovesi replied to Jessica and Keith about the current trail restriction legal problems and the ownership of the old lodge buildings. Everyone deplores the state of disrepair and wishes the area could still be open.

Carole Rogers replied to David about Silver Valley, asking if he knew when they moved the cross and the chapel (at the campground)? John Anthony Neslusan said he used to play bass in the band Canada Goose that played at Bear Mountain in the early ’70s and he met many fine people there. Larry commented about Sylvan Knob that all the lifts converge at the top which makes it a great area for families.

Merry Lou Loyer mentioned that her parents owned the Look Out Inn across the road from the Paul Bunion Memorial. She said there were no tows left on the old ski area across the road, but her brother used to climb the hill and ski down. Merry Lou also commented on the Greenbush Inn that the toboggan run was still reachable in the late ’60s and early ’70s from Everett Rd, west of US-23 north of Greenbush. She said that Schmidt also had the golf course and Saradella Dairy farm that are now part of the Lakewood Shores Resort. The old barns are still there on Cedar Lake Rd. just south of the Iosco/Alcona line. Larry also commented on the Greenbush Inn that his family vacationed there in ’65 and he has pictures of the dining room, tennis courts, and the pools. We’d like to see them, Larry, if you’d care to share them. Ken says he lived there summers with his family (his father worked there) from ’60 to ’65. He, too, would like to see Larry’s pictures. I should mention that we are still looking for evidence that Greenbush Inn ever had a ski tow or lift which might make it one of the earliest alpine ski areas in Michigan.

Paul Williams replied to Martin on the Briar hills page that he used to live across the field from the ski area. He also commented that he misses the many good times. Don’t we all, Paul. Rich Drouillard commented on Snow Valley that he learned to ski there as a teen. His mom was a nurse in Saginaw, and she took care of the son of a ski instructor from Snow Valley who had been seriously injured in an accident. His family was treated extremely well at Snow Valley.

Sandra McFarlin says she and her husband bought the former Dryden ski lodge property in the ’70s after it had been heavily vandalized. They remodeled what was left of the lodge into their home, although it no longer resembles the old structure. She would like any pictures of the old ski lodge.

Please keep those comments coming to our blog and check out our Facebook page. We love to hear more about the old days (and modern days) of skiing in Michigan. But now that summer is drawing to a close, although you wouldn’t know it from the temperature today, you can start anticipating the coming ski season. The early projections are for COLD and SNOW due to the water temperatures in the Pacific.

Bob Knox, Publisher
Michigan Lost Ski Areas Project

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment