I just came across A Man and His Mountian earlier this evening and knew before I was half  through that it was one of the handful of best Michigan based ski/snowboard film I’ve seen.  Go ahead and scoff Alaskan or western readers, but there is actually considerable competition in this category.  Just to off the top of my head the list has  my brother’s films Sanity, and The State of Michigan vs Teddy Knape, the opening 15 minutes of Aspen Extreme, the Mulligans Hollow documentary Heaven on Earth, and the Pete Proos Air Pup video.  There are two or three more slipping my mind at the moment as well.

Anyway, the video about an abandoned ski area in Mancelona Michigan must be viewed for a number of reasons.  First off, its loaded with classic Michigan skiing quotes like “if there was powder it would be crazy”, and “if I won the lottery I would buy this place” to go along with the talk of an ongoing plague of vandalism (not cool northern Michigan youth) and the constant discussion of the obvious potential that sadly has next to no chance of being realized.  Apart from that there is a stoked Mechanic that slaves away at an ancient T-Bar while wearing a wolf hat, as well  driving an antique snowmobile and the type of old snow-cat Cannonsburg was still grooming with when I was a kid.  At the end of the film he busts out an American flag bandanna, and makes sure to point out that he isn’t getting paid.  I used to see this place out the window driving too and from Boyne Highlands, and it has always intrigued me.  Especially as I’ve had good luck skiing the now shuttered Sugarloaf and learned how good a closed Michigan ski area could be.  So go watch the video, check out The Alaska Lost Ski Areas Project and visit these abandoned gems out, for both some history and interesting skiing.

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