Mio Mountain –Mio, MI

Mio Mountain was on the South West edge of town. According to skiresorts.org Mio Mountain Ski Area was engineered through 60 acres of virgin landscape, with snowmaking capabilities, five electric ski tows and 18 ski runs, ranging from novice to expert, some up to 1,500 feet in length. It had a  200′ vertical drop with a summit at 1286′.

According to the Mio Mountain website in 2008:

“Mio Mountain forms the south border of the Au Sable river valley near the city of Mio, in northeastern Michigan.  Mio Mountain Ski Area opened in 1956.  It was the dream and creation of Charles “Charlie” Budesky.  Throughout the 1970’s and into the 1980’s it was a center of activity during the long winter months in Mio, Michigan.  As time passed and Charlie’s health declined the operation of the ski area was a big challenge.  But at age 92, Charlie spent his winter at the mountain giving the snow report and opening at least one run whenever conditions permitted.  In 1997, he sold the business to Dan and Cecilia Boyer, who had fallen in love with the place on their first visit.

“The Boyers opened the mountain for two weekends in January of 1998, having a glorious time.  The snow was marginal but the weather was sunny…it was a magical experience.  Difficulty with keeping the tow ropes adjusted and the beginning of a series of health problems for Dan prevented the re-opening of the ski area.  The dream didn’t die…but it had to change.

“Initially, reopening of the ski business is not a viable option, but the Boyers still dream of opening the ski area…to once again experience the thrill of skiing the My-Oh-My and Jack Pine runs, which overlook the beautiful, serene Au Sable River Valley.  It will take time, but among the things they’ve learned since 1997 are patience, persistence and hope.”

20 Responses to Mio Mountain –Mio, MI

  1. Deborah King says:

    Wondering If Mio Mt is open 2012? This place was a big part of my winter childhood; many years of great times were had there and I wish to share it with my kids. Spent every other weekwnd there skiing with a lot of great families. Klause’s, the Goat hearding couple, Sussie (?) and her family, Scott and Kathy (?) brother and sister, and many others. Would love to hear they’re open again. Last time I visited, I was very sad to see Charlie’s snowmobile sitting in the parking lot and the hills all torn up; very sad. Miss Charlie & Peral and all the great times.

  2. Beth Frauenknecht says:

    Our family spent many winter weekends at Mio Mountain, and I have so many good memories! The lodge room seemed huge back in the 70’s when I was a kid, and I loved all the sofas and end tables pushed together so tight you could barely get through! The hearth was at one end and the big picture window on the other end! The moms would pick a spot and camp the family’s stuff there for the day, and us kids would only come in for a picnic lunch at one of the picnic tables in the dining area and have some of Pearl’s delicious hot chocolate! Through the dining area was the tiny ski rental and repair shop, where Charlie and some of the staff would patch up whatever you broke and send you on your way! Took lessons from old Charlie myself back in the day over on the far “intermediate” slope! Used to love skiing without poles — just zipping around from rope to rope as fast as we could — what a great and wholesome place to grow up it was! Do you ever post pictures of old resorts? Would love to see some and share some of mine!

    • MILSAP says:

      Yes, Beth. We love to post pictures of the old resorts. Please follow the directions on the “About MILSAP” page to send them to us and we will be sure to put them on our site. We cannot allow pictures to be posted directly for fear of what some people would post.

    • Dianne says:

      What great memories! Thanks for sharing. Pearl was my Grandma and Charlie was almost my Grandpa. (Knew him my whole life.) Would love to hear more stories. Really – thanks for sharing. It warms my heart to hear this!

    • Dianne says:

      Hey Beth! So glad you have great memories of Mio Mountain. Pearl was my Grandma and I have just created a Facebook page. Please share with us some of your stories of Mio Mountain. It would be great to hear them! And yes, Pearl/my Grandma did make a great hot chocolate!

      Here’s the link: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Mio-Mountain-Ski-Resort/534585496638973

    • Dianne says:

      Beth –
      We would love to see your photos and hear your stories on our new Facebook page for Mio Mountain. Here’s our link: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Mio-Mountain-Ski-Resort/534585496638973?ref=hl

      We also copied the above and pasted it there. Feel free to add to it as much as you’d like. Pearl was my Grandma and I’d really love to get this page going and hear how Mio Mountain and Charlie and Grandma touched the lives of many. Thanks for sharing!

      Dianne

  3. marsha@mio.k12.mi.us says:

    Anyone know how to get ahold of the Dan and Cecilia Boyer family to see if they still own Mio Mt?

  4. Dianne says:

    Pearl was my Grandma and Charlie was ‘almost’ my Grandpa. It’s so nice to see people remembering of Mio Mountain and Grandma and Charlie so fondly. Thank you for that… Was searching the internet myself to see what happened to the place…

  5. Dianne says:

    Would love to see photos or hear more stories of the place. I miss my Grandma and Charlie. Your stories brings them ‘back to life’ and warms my heart…

  6. Dianne says:

    I created a Facebook page to share your stories and possibly reconnect with old friends from Mio Mountain. Come to our Facebook page at this link: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Mio-Mountain-Ski-Resort/534585496638973?skip_nax_wizard=true

  7. Dan says:

    Does anyone have any information on Charles Budesky’s “Portable & Self Propelling Ski Tow” which was patented (Pat # 2,690,230) in September of 1954. I’ve found most of one and would like to hear from people who are familiar with the machines.

  8. Rusty Yamada says:

    Is the mountain for sale?
    Rusty Yamada

    • MILSAP says:

      Last we heard, Rusty, it had just been sold. The new owners (from Colorado) were thinking about possibly re-opening a ski area on the site. There used to be a number of ski areas in North-eastern lower Michigan. Now I think there is only one public area and one private one and they’re near the center of the state.

      • Dan Boyer says:

        Rumors!
        Just to clarify, Mio Mountain Ski Area hasn’t been resold, nor is it for sale.

        Fact
        If someone really wanted to re-open the mountain for skiing the price of entry would be steep, not because the property would be too expensive but because of what would have to be done to make it functional in today’s economic circumstance. The people who have the $ resources to do the job wouldn’t likely be interested in such a small hill, as wonderful as it is.

        If someone local has $1.5 Million,or more, to invest and the know-how to do the job then we’d be happy to hear from them. Until then we’ll keep the taxes and mortgage paid and try to keep the place from entirely decaying. We enjoy our limited time there and dream of a sustainable future for the property, however we can work it out.

  9. Ron Osborne says:

    When I was 15 I actually worked for a week at Mio Mountain. I was helping Charlie make a small house / shed that was going to be used as for one of the tow rope control houses. I even got to ride the IMP as we pulled the building up the hill. That was 1974. I remember I didn’t get paid, I got free skiing when I came back in the winter. I never made it back to collect my free skiing… It was quite an experience that I’ll never forget.

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