Copper Peak

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Copper Peak
Copper Peak Ski Flying Hill.JPG
City or Town Ironwood Township, Michigan
Country United States
Opened 1970
Expanded 1980, 1988
K-spot K-145
Hill record Werner Schuster, Mathias Wallner
(158.0 m in 1994)
Copper Peak
Copper Peak is located in Michigan
Copper Peak
Location within the state of Michigan
Location Ironwood, Michigan
Coordinates 46°36′04″N 90°05′25″W / 46.60111°N 90.09028°W / 46.60111; -90.09028Coordinates: 46°36′04″N 90°05′25″W / 46.60111°N 90.09028°W / 46.60111; -90.09028
NRHP Reference # 73000948[1]
Designated MSHS January 22, 1971[2]

Copper Peak is a ski flying hill located in Ironwood, Michigan, United States. Built in 1970 it remains the only ski flying facility in the Western Hemisphere. In 1994 a K-spot on Copper Peak was at 145 meters (476 ft), allowing jumps up to 158 meters (518 ft). Although there have been no flights at Copper Peak since 1994, there has been some investment in improving the facility to meet the standards of the International Ski Federation (FIS).

Ski flying at Copper Peak involves going much greater distances than normal Ski Jumping.[3]

View looking up the inrun


Between 1970 and 1994 there were ten competitions in the hill.[4] The hill record is 158 meters (518 ft), set by Mathias Wallner and Werner Schuster (both Austria) on January 22, 1994, and January 23, 1994, respectively. The hill was expanded in the 1980s, but the profile is still outdated compared to current standards.

From summer to fall, the public can visit an observation platform 18 stories up the tower of the "highest man-made ski flying hill in the world". Open on weekends, it presents a view promoted as "the most awesome vista in the Midwest". Clear days give a northeasterly view of the Porcupine Mountains with the Apostle Islands 35 miles (56 km) to the west. Exceptionally clear days—caused by a Canadian high pressure system moving in—permit a view 85 miles (137 km) across Lake Superior to Isle Royale and Grand Marais, Minnesota.[5]

World Cup[edit]

Year Winner Nationality
1981 Alois Lipburger[6] Austria AUT
Alois Lipburger Austria AUT

Hill Record[edit]

Date Name Length
1970 Czechoslovakia Zbyněk Hubač 134 m (440 ft)
1973 Japan Akitsugu Konno 136 m (446 ft)
1973 United States Jerry Martin 137 m (449 ft)
1973 Japan Akitsugu Konno 138 m (453 ft)
1974 United States Tom Dargay 144 m (472 ft)
1974 United States Jerry Martin 144 m (472 ft)
1975 United States Jerry Martin 147 m (482 ft)
1976 East Germany Hans-Georg Aschenbach 154 m (505 ft)
1981-2-13 Austria Alois Lipburger 154 m (505 ft)
1990 Czechoslovakia Stanislav Vasko 156 m (512 ft)
1994-1-22 Austria Mathias Wallner 158 m (518 ft)
1994-1-23 Austria Werner Schuster 158 m (518 ft)


In 2012 the hill was under reconstruction. They have completed reprofiling the landing zone angle with filling the soil from 41° to 36°. New K-point will be at 170 meters (560 ft), new HS[A] at 180 meters (590 ft), allowing jumps up to 185 meters (607 ft). They have already finished digging a large 2,830-cubic-meter (100,000 cu ft) collection pond at the bottom of the hill and a 710-cubic-meter (25,000 cu ft) at the top of the hill from which they intend to make snow.

Currently they are installing safety fence along the landing slope and plans to be completed in the latter half of 2012. Installing the pipes, pipes etc. will commence in summer 2012.[dated info] They also plan to build new judges tower.

The USA Ski Jumping organization announced that an exhibition ski flying event would take place at Copper Peak, February 28 to March 2, 2014,[7] but this event has been cancelled. Instead, the Copper Peak board announced that Copper Peak will be converted to a ski jumping hill, with competitions beginning in 2015 or 2016. The plan is to hold ski jumping in the summer as well as the winter which would make Copper peak the largest summer ski jumping hill in the world.[8]

See also[edit]

Two other ski jumps located in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan:


  1. ^ "HS" means Hill Size, and it is a unit of measurement (and a rating system) of the size of each hill (jump size) in Ski Jumping. Russell, John F. (January 29, 2009). "Weather delays ski jumping qualifier: Junior Olympic event takes place on smaller hills". Retrieved February 21, 2013. 


  1. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. March 13, 2009. Retrieved June 12, 2012. 
  2. ^ Staff (2009). "Copper Peak / Chippewa Hill Peak". Historic Sites Online. Michigan State Housing Development Authority. Retrieved June 26, 2010. 
  3. ^ Murray, Dave (September 6, 2011). "Bad postcards: Copper Peak operators promise their ski flying hill is more impressive than card depicts". The Grand Rapids Press. OCLC 975013. Archived from the original on June 14, 2012. Retrieved June 12, 2012. 
  4. ^ Baulch, Vivian M. (February 1, 2002). "Michigan's long history of ski jumping". The Detroit News. ISSN 1055-2715. Retrieved February 13, 2011. [dead link]
  5. ^ Hunt, Mary; Hunt, Don (2009). "Bessemer: Copper Peak Ski Flying Hill". Hunts' Guide to Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Albion, MI: Midwestern Guides. Retrieved February 12, 2011. 
  6. ^ FIS-Ski - results[dead link]
  7. ^ Graves, Pete (June 7, 2013). "Ski Flyers to Soar Again at Copper Peak in 2014". USA Ski Jumping. Retrieved November 17, 2013. 
  8. ^ Krueger, Andrew (December 9, 2013). "Copper Peak looks for comeback to world stage". The Daily News (Iron Mountain, MI). 

External links[edit]