Bogus Basin Today
Today’s Bogus Basin is a ten million dollar annual operation with about 600 full and part time employees. And volunteers are still part of the resort also, numbering two to three hundred. It has the people and fleet of equipment needed to groom sixty-seven runs, maintain and operate seven lifts and handle up to ten-thousand skiers per day. The area has the second highest number of skiable acres among Idaho’s nineteen resorts.
One of the biggest attractions about Bogus Basin is its affordability. In the 1990s management made a conscious decision to cut prices so anyone in the community could give the sport a try. The $199 season pass for adults is now a cornerstone of the areas long term business plan.
“That pricing has allowed us to attract a lot of people who but for that would not be able to be up here at all. Skiing was not on my radar when I was a kid, and it’s on the radar screen of all the kids in this town. We’ve got about 20 percent of the population that consider themselves skiers or snowboarders according to various lifestyle surveys and that’s about three times the national average.”
The Bogus Basin mission is about affordable and accessible mountain fun…in all its forms. A new lodge highlights a 37-kilometer Nordic trail system for those who prefer using their own power to ski both uphill and downhill. The tubing hill lets folks line up and make the ride down the slope either an individual or collective experience.
The area also has a tradition of supporting groups that form themselves…like the Vertigals. Since the late 90s, they meet Wednesday mornings to group up according to ability.
“We have young gals with their babies in day care while they come up here for a couple of hours. We have grandmothers, we have professional women. We have retired people. Everyone tends to leave their responsibilities behind for a couple of hours in the morning, and we’re so lucky and fortunate to be up here enjoying this beautiful place. And that’s our bond. We always look at each other and say this is better than anything else we might be doing for the couple of hours.”
Another group that’s been hitting the slopes of Bogus together for years is the Prime Timers. Mostly retirees, they share a certain geriatric, rather than gender, connection. Wednesday is also their day to enjoy the thrills of skiing. Bob Greenwood, the Treasure Valley ski shop pioneer, helped start the group back in 1986.
“I had a group of older guys that were skiing by themselves, I wanted to get people skiing with people, to get away from skiing by themselves, because skiing by yourself isn’t a good situation and it’s really worked out. We’ve got 40 to 60 skiers every Wednesday. Way over 200 signed up, not all of them ski, but they still like to hear about it.”
A younger generation of skiers also makes regular appearances on the slopes of Bogus. Youth racing is among the dozens of community affiliations with the ski area.
“The instructors and programs at bogus are wonderful about maintaining the kids abilities and knowing what they can and cannot do and giving them the confidence. Skiing some of the other, larger resorts you have so many people and I think you lose sight of what’s important, whether you go there as a community, you get involved in a community. People back home are always talking about Bogus and the skiing.”