No frills, all thrills

by: MISkier - Oct 20, 2009

  • Overall Rating 5
  • Family Friendly 0
  • All Mtn. Terrain 5
  • Terrain Park 5
  • Nightlife 0

    Pros: Vertical, terrain, value, collegiate atmosphere

    Cons: Sometimes sketchy conditions

    Recommended For: Singles

    Date Visited: Feb 1, 2009

Full review

Known as a skier's hill, Marquette Mountain is a day area that caters to the large number of collegians (Northern MI University) that ski/board there. If you like hanging out with the college kids, they're there in spades. Lift tickets are very reasonably priced, and there are deals to be had; check their website often. The terrain is some of the best in the state, with a couple excellent racing trails (which often tend to be closed for race practice and events). Marquette's racing prowess is best explained by the sign at the bottom of one of the lifts showing the number of state championships won by the boys/girls teams at Marquette High School. The view of Lake Superior (just three miles away) is really impressive from the top, especially at sunset. The top of the hill is closed at night but there are still plenty of trails to play on under the lights.

Occasionally, there can be issues with snow cover. The hill does get some lake-effect snow, but often the heavy bands hit east of Marquette and miss the hill. Probably the best time to visit is in January-February; December and March can be below par at times. One annoyance I have is that the one chairlift that goes to the very top only does so for a couple hours a day (there's an unloading ramp about 150 vertical feet shy of the peak).

No on-site lodging, but lots of motels within a few miles. I always stay at the Imperial Motel; nothing fancy for certain, but clean and very reasonably priced. Marquette Mountain's bar (The T-Bar) is pretty vibrant.