When winter blankets the area with feet upon feet of snow, many locals get excited for the chanceto get out and play. It becomes tourist season once again. The Midwest's finest ski resorts - Boyne Mountain, Boyne Highlands, Nub's Nob, Shanty Creek and Schuss Mountain - are all within an easy drive. The City of Charlevoix offers one of the few municipal ski facilities left in Michigan. Mt. McSauba is designed with families in mind, from the beginner to the intermediate downhill skier. Equipment rental and ski lessons are available. Snowboarders and cross-country skiers also enjoy this friendly facility. The 80-acre Charles A. Ransom Preserve, Sleepy Hollow Preserve, North Point Nature Preserve and Fisherman's Island State Park are ideal for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing. Charlevoix's 19-mile snowmobile trail is linked to one of the nation's best snowmobile networks. Each community also hosts a local ice skating rink where families can glide along as the snow slowly drifts down.
CROSS COUNTRY SKI TRAILS
Charlevoix Cross Country Ski & Snowshoe Trail— The Charlevoix Cross Country Ski Trail offers three loops, from one to six kilometers long, suitable for novice to advanced - from flat ground to steep hills. A free 2k lighted groomed cross-country trail is available as are 80 acres of ungroomed trails. One mile north of Charlevoix, west of U.S. 31, follow the signs to Mt. McSauba Park. Cross Country skis and snowshoes are available for rent for just $12. Snowshoe rental is also available at Revolution Bike located in the Oleson's Shopping Center downtown.
Fisherman's Island State Park—Scenic trail is three kilometers long. There is plenty of wide-open space for skiers to blaze their own trail. Located two miles south of Charlevoix on Bell's Bay Road.
Little Traverse Wheelway —The Little Traverse Wheelway is an ungroomed, non-motorized trail situated along Lake Michigan on the north side of US-31. The trail runs up to a 26-miles round trip along Little Traverse Bay. Trail users may bike, skate, ski, walk, run (pick your favorite sport for any season) from Charlevoix to Petoskey.
Mt. McSauba— The City of Charlevoix offers one of the few municipal ski facilities left in Michigan. Mt. McSauba became a municipal ski resort in 1956 and is ranked as one of the top three small ski areas
in the United States. Mt. McSauba is perfect for the beginner or intermediate skier with a sprinkling of slopes for the more advanced downhill skier. It offers six runs, four rope tows, lighted skiing and a free-lighted sledding hill. Snowboarders, snowbladers and snowshoers will enjoy a day spent at Mt. McSauba. Equipment is available for rental. Skis are $8 while snowboards are just $12. Group lessons and private lessons are also available. Skier or not, the view from atop Mt. McSauba is spectacular!
Shanty Creek and Schuss Mountain
Some of the finest downhill ski facilities in the Midwest are located within a snowball's throw of Charlevoix. Many skiers find Charlevoix to be an ideal base for operations as all of the hills are almost equidistant from the community.
Charlevoix Trail— A 19 mile trail that runs between Charlevoix and East Jordan. The Charlevoix Trail head is located just 1/2 mile south of Charlevoix off U.S. 31. The East Jordan trailhead and the snowmobile clubhouse are located near the M-32 & Mt. Bliss Road intersection - south of East Jordan. The Charlevoix Snowmobile Trail connects with the Northern Michigan Snowmobile trail Network.
For maps and trail conditions contact: The Charlevoix Snowmobile Club at 547-1901, www.chxsnowmobile.com, The Charlevoix Area Chamber of Commerce at 231-547-2101 or the East Jordan Area Chamber of Commerce at 231-536-7351.
Chandler Hill Trail —The 34-mile Jordan River State Forest Trail begins east of Walloon Lake Village near the intersection of Howard & Chandler Roads and connects to the Jordan Valley Trail to the south and the Wolverine Trail to the north. For trail maps, conditions and lodging, contact: the Boyne City Chamber of Commerce at 231-582-6222 or the East Jordan Area Chamber of Commerce at 231-536-7351.
Lace up your skates and head over to Mt. McSauba! The skating rink is open Monday through Friday, 4 to 8pm; Saturday, 12, noon, to 8pm; and Sunday, 12, noon to 6pm. Rental skates are available for $2 for residents or $3 for non-resident. For additional information, contact Mt. McSauba at 231.547.3267.
UNIQUE CHARLEVOIX WINTER ATTRACTIONS
Earl Young Homes—The Earl Young Homes, also known as Mushroom Homes, Hobbit Houses, or Gnome Homes, are one or the most popular attractions in the summer time, but most people don't get a chance to see them with snow sloping off their irregular shapped roofs. Seeing these unique homes in the winter is a whole different experience and gives the houses a different personality of their own. Stop in the Chamber of Commerce for a tour map and the history of these one-of-a-kind structures. Photo Courtesy of Robbie Small
Santa's Workshop—For as long as anyone can remember Dale and Marilyn Boss have been decorating their house to spark the imagination of kids and adults alike. Every winter families flock to the cornor of Maple and Pearl street to take their picture in front of the Boss Christmas display.
Charlevoix Snowmobile Ride-In —The Charlevoix Snowmobile Club sponsors an annual snowmobile ride-in each year. The ride-in participants rendezvous in downtown Charlevoix's East Park (weather and snow permitting) where riders can warm up by the bonfire and enjoy free hot dogs, chili, hot chocolate and coffee. Drawings are held throughout the afternoon for a wide variety of door prizes donated by area merchants.