Marquette Mountain, located near Marquette the Upper Peninsula's largest city, has been a longtime mainstay in the UP ski scene, and it's no wonder.
Dubbed the Boulder of the Midwest, Marquette, the town and ski area, receives an annual snowfall around 225-inches. That's nearly 19 feet of snow each season. That's probably why you see racks and cargo boxes topping the majority of vehicles around town.
The ski area opened over 50 years ago in 1957 as Cliff's Ridge because it set on land leased from Cleveland Cliffs, a local mining company. The year GM Vern Barber came on board in1982 the name was changed to Marquette Mountain and has stuck ever since. The snow comes early and stays late with the greatest snowmaking machine in the world, Lake Superior, supplying snow measured in feet instead of inches.
"We normally get the mountain opened and covered sometime in November and keep our base through the month of March. Last season was one of the best I've seen in nearly a quarter-century. Hopefully we get more of that this winter," said the longtime GM.
Barber feels the Mountain's strength is its diversity. "Whether you want moguls, glades, long cruising runs, a terrain park, halfpipe, or a race course, we've got it covered. We also stay open Tuesday through Sunday nights until 10 p.m., and people come from as far away as Escanaba - 60 miles to the south - to ski and ride. Our skier counts on Tuesday and Thursday nights are often as big as Sunday afternoon."
With a 600-foot vertical drop, 25 runs, four terrain parks and a halfpipe, three chairlifts and a surface tow, it offers some of the best skiing and riding found around the Great Lakes. From the top of the Mountain you can see the city and Lake Superior. The ski area is within the city limits.
Advance lift tickets are on sale in five packs through Dec. 24, and the tickets have a two-year shelf life. If you don't use them all this season they will still be good for the 2010-11 season. The five pack is $135. The per ticket price of $27 is a good savings. Daily adult lift tickets will be $35 midweek and $40 on weekends this season.
More information. Or call 800-944-7669