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Copper Peak Ski Flying Hill, MI
mini location map1983-05-08
6 by photographer avatarBarrett
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Copper Peak Ski Flying Hill, MI 
Copper Peak Ski Flying Hill, MI
Hike & Climb avatar May 08 1983
Hike & Climb0.50 Miles 606 AEG
Hike & Climb0.50 Miles   1 Hour      0.50 mph
606 ft AEG
Onsight I G  • Sport • 3rd Other Good • 606 Feet 
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Copper Peak Ski Flying Hill, a 241 foot cantilevered steel structure sitting atop a 365 foot copper bearing outcrop in Michigan's Upper Peninsula, is the only ski flying hill in the western hemisphere. There are a few ski jumping hills (less than 120 meters) but at a 145 meter jump length, it's all by itself. Located in a remote area 10 miles outside the town of Bessemer, it makes for an awesome off-season adventure.
Mark L. and I arrived and parked at the end of the landing bowl, no locked gates or signage telling us not to. We hiked straight toward the landing hill, held together with telephone poles tethered horizontally to lessen erosion. There were wooden steps on the side, but they were in bad shape so we stuck to the dirt. At a 41 degree pitch, it is also famous for the snowmobilers who try to climb it.
Soon we arrived at the base of the tower, which has an elevator and stairs, but we found them to be locked. Fortunately, the lowest part of the ramp is an easy bit of buildering, and we proceeded right up the wooden chute. At 35 degrees, it wasn't as steep as the hill, and there were horizontal slats of wood that provided traction. The trees below grew smaller, and we reached the cantilever point, beyond which the tower noticeably began to bounce with our movement. Reaching the top, we turned around and looked down the ramp. Holy ****. :o The idea of leaning forward with a pair of skis on your feet looked suicidal. Serious gonads.
The views were amazing, Lake Superior to the north, and the rolling green of the UP cloaked in a light mist below.
A short exercise in how-much-should-we-make-it-bounce followed a photo session, and we headed back down. We decided we should haul a tire up here next time for a roll.
I returned with others years later, and we forgot all about the tire. Looks like I have an excuse to go back.
The past, the present, and the future walked into a bar.
It was tense.
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