by: sewardhorner - 18th January 2010

  • 3
  • Beginner
  • Intermediate
  • Expert
  • 3All-Mtn. Terrain
  • 3Family Friendly
  • Aprés Ski
  • Terrain Park
  • Overall Value
Extremely friendly and helpful staff
Size

Full review

Ratings are based on SW MI, obviously it isn't the rockies or even N. MI. This is an update for this years ski season to an earlier review. As always the staff is extremely friendly and helpful and the ownership tries very hard with what they have to work with. The snow so far this year was good and the runs groomed nicely. There are 3 lifts which serve basically three runs: one easy beginner, one easy intermediate that is the longest, and one that is half terrain park and half "advanced" with a very short semi-steep section that flattens out quickly. You can read more about the beginner area and my thoughts on tow ropes below. The lifts are fine and well maintained. The main lodge, bar, ski shop, and rental shop are all no frills but are clean and seem well maintained though the fact that they are in 3 different buildings can be a pain and is my biggest complaint (outside of the tow rope). There is a nice fire pit in the shop/Bar building. They have great chili/cheese dogs in the cafeteria. All in all it is what is: a small area that is very close to northern indiana. If live in Indiana and you don't want to drive 3-4 hours to go skiing, Swiss and another SW MI area called Bittersweet are better than not skiing at all. We took our 3 year old skiing for her first trip and wanted to teach her at Swiss like we did our son for memeories sake. Swiss is very family friendly in that beginners and kids are welcome however I had forgotten how much I do not like using tow ropes. They wouldn't be so bad if they would slow it down. After 3 trips up it trying to hold my daughter with one arm, grab the rope and hold on with the other I remembered why I swore off the tow rope after teaching our son. One piece of advice - if you will be using the tow rope bring your oldest and worst pair of gloves as it will destroy your nice ones. I decided I had enough and we went over to the regular runs (the "bunny" hill is off by itself) and it went much better. The lift operators were extremely helpful in assiting us on the lift. If you are not a strong skier though I would not recommend takig your 3 year old on the lift as you will need to hold them when it is time to get off so you will need to decide for yourself on doing that. I really wish they would invest in a magic carpet for the beginner area. If they did this would be the best place in SW MI for teaching beginners.
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