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Indy Pass Road Trip: Upper Wisconsin, Upper Michigan

Big-Powderhorn-Resort-Facebook A sunny day at Big Powderhorn.

A unique Indy Pass road trip in the upper Midwest would be to combine a trip visiting northern Wisconsin and Michigan's Upper Peninsula for skiing at three of the Heartland's larger ski resorts; Granite Peak, Pine Mountain, and Big Powderhorn.

The Indy Pass is good for two free days at each resort, plus 25% off the daily rate for a third day. Focusing on independently owned mountains, the Indy Pass is accepted at 59 resorts across U.S. and Canada.

It would make a perfect week-long road trip for Chicagoland skiers and those in Wisconsin and Minnesota. Think spring break in the Midwest instead of driving out west.

Start with Granite Peak, which rises over 700 feet above the city of Wausau. They offer 74 runs that cascade down the mountain face, five terrain parks, and seven chairlifts, including three high-speed. The variety of runs ranging from long cruisers and glades to short cliff drops on top of the mountain. The city of Wausau offers a fine selection of lodging choices as well as restaurants.

It's 138 miles north, a little under a three-hour drive, to Pine Mountain Resort in Iron Mountain, Michigan. The resort has hotel accommodations with trailside lodging and fine dining, 27 downhill runs, three terrain parks, and five lifts. Located on a ridge overlooking the city it offers a 500-foot vertical drop and scenic views stretch as far as the eye can see. They offer lodging and dining packages that don't include lift tickets. Iron Mountain also offers lodging choices.

A little over 100 miles up U.S. 2 in the Upper Peninsula is Big Powderhorn Resort, which offers 45 ski trails, two terrain parks, nine lifts and an impressive 622-foot vertical drop. It’s one of the few Midwest areas where a trail map really comes in handy. From the top of the mountain, high peaks stretch across the valley providing an alpine view unequaled around the Midwest. Powderhorn has lodging, and nearby Ironwood offers several lodging and restaurant choices.

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