The sought-after Thanksgiving opening for ski areas has come and gone, with Sun Valley Resort able to get skiers on the hill on Nov. 22 thanks in large part to its extensive snowmaking system.
While Bogus Basin Mountain Recreation Area has to accumulate a lot of snow before it can open, resort officials are still planning for the future.
Bogus teamed with Boise State University's marketing and research class to conduct an online survey that asked skiers and boarders what they think of Bogus Basin, not only as a ski area but as a value to the community.
It's the largest survey the ski area has ever done, and Bogus Basin general manger Alan Moore said it represents an effort to have a better understanding of what the area's customers are really looking for in terms of pricing and amenities.
Of particular interest is the reaction to a proposal to increase the cost of season passes from the $199 Bogus has charged for the last 14 seasons. Moore said Bogus officials believe that the area needs the influx of cash that a roughly $30 increase could bring with it, pointing out that if the price had kept pace with the Consumer Price Index, a pass would cost $280.
"It's so important to Bogus Basin that we remain affordable because that's what's best for the community. But we need that $30-or-so increase to keep up," he said.
Other questions asked of skiers were what sorts of events they would like to see at Bogus and what ideas the public has for the future of the ski area. Moore said Bogus officials also hope to find out how much of the public knows that Bogus Basin is a nonprofit and can accept tax-deductible donations.
"We could sure use people's contributions," Moore added with a laugh.
More than 1,700 people responded to the survey before it closed Nov. 24, and Moore said he hopes to have the full results by mid-December. The info gleaned from the survey will help guide Bogus officials as they plan for the future.
Resorts across the area will open as soon as enough snow piles up. Despite early snows, warm temperatures caused many resorts, including Bogus Basin, to lose whatever fell. Brundage Mountain Resort in McCall has several inches at the base but has a long way to go to get the slopes open.