Kalamazoo Ski Club — Plainwell

As sent to us by profesorav (Dr. Karen Vocke of WMU), the Kalamazoo Ski Club operated a ski facility a bit north of the city for many years starting in the 1960’s and ending in the 1980’s. The club itself was founded in 1960 and dissolved in 1988, according to the State of Michigan.


The ski hill and lodge were off AB Avenue between Douglas and 12th Street. It looks as though the slopes may have faced east and been accessed by a driveway running west from Douglas, but perhaps some of you from Kalamazoo could set us straight.

This area has been reported on the Vanished Kalamazoo Facebook group. One poster said the area had a rope tow powered by a Corvair engine, mounted in a shed using automobile wheels as pulleys.

If you have any fond memories of skiing at the Kalamazoo Ski Club or know why the “Z” in Kalamazoo is backward, please leave a comment.

2 Responses to Kalamazoo Ski Club — Plainwell

  1. Chris says:

    I grew up neighbors and played in those woods quite a bit with the kids that lived there after it closed. Don’t really know anything about the history of it. Nobody I’ve talked to really even remembers it in operation.

  2. Will Hartman says:

    I learned to ski there at the age of 4, my mother was on the board of directors in the 1970’s. It had 2 rope tows, the small rope may have been powered by a Corvair engine? Idr?.. but the main rope was a in line 6 cylinder.. my dad used to keep it running. I have many fond memories of that place, having hot chocolate, sitting around the fireplace, in the center of the lodge. I grew up 2 miles away.

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