- Overall Rating 5
- Family Friendly 4
- All-Mtn. Terrain 5
- Terrain Park 4
- Nightlife 4
Date Visited: Nov 8, 2007
Searchmont is arguably the best skiing in the midwest. Over 700 feet of vertical, real steeps, and far enough north that it doesn't get the freeze-thaw cycle that creates icy slopes. It's also rarely if ever crowded. If you usually ski in the lower peninsula of Michigan you owe it to yourself to drive another two hours north and give Searchmont a try. Once you get about 10 miles north of the Soo, the topography changes completely - it really feels like you're in the mountains. In fact, since Searchmont is on an escarpment rather than a moraine it's geologically distinct from anything found in the lower peninsula of Michigan.
At Searchmont, it's all about the skiing/riding. If that's what you're there to do, you'll love it. If you're looking for shopping, fine dining, video games, etc you probably want to head elsewhere.
Searchmont is a little north of the heavy lake effect snow zone; this means it doesn't get quite as much snow as Boyne Country, but it also means that it's more likely to be sunny at Searchmont than further south. Think about that next time you're skiing on one of those typical Michigan grey cloudy flat-light days.
One caveat: there's not a lot of truly beginner friendly terrain like you find at the Boynes or Nubs. Most of the green trails at Searchmont would rate blue anywhere in the lower peninsula of Michigan (and they'd be rated black at some hills.)
I live near Detroit, and Searchmont is the number 1 weekend ski destination.