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Bogus Basin abruptly closes, as rain falls on already diminished snowpack

Bogus Basin abruptly closed for the season Saturday afternoon as rain fell on the already slushy snow. An announcement posted on the non-profit ski resort’s website just said, “We are closed. See you next season!” Resort spokeswoman Susan Saad told the Idaho Statesman, “Rain did no favors to the snow – it got beyond repair.” The season was 86 days this year. “It was a rough year for us, for certain,” Saad said; she said ticket sales were 44 percent lower this season than last year.

Both lodges will be open Wednesday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. this week for people to pick up their gear from lockers on the mountain; they’ll also be open next Monday through Thursday from 9-4.

Bogus announces this is its last full week of skiing for season; weekends-only starting Sat.

Here’s some truly sad news: Bogus Basin has just announced that this will be the last full week of skiing for the season at the non-profit Boise ski resort, which normally stays open until early April. Bogus will be open weekends only starting this Saturday, March 14. After this coming weekend, it will remain open weekends only “as conditions allow.”

A spring carnival is planned for this Saturday with activities and prizes, outdoor music near the Simplot lodge from 11:30 to 5, and food and beverage specials at both lodges. Tickets will be discounted to $25 starting Saturday, with skiing on the No. 1 Deer Point, No. 3 Superior and No. 7 Coach chairlifts and the Easy Rider magic carpet; the No. 2 Morning Star chairlift will be open for access only. This coming weekend will be the last for food and beverage service at the upper Pioneer Lodge; the Nordic lodge and tubing hill already are closed.

Snow in the mountains…

Here's some good news for skiers: Almost five inches of new snow has fallen at Bogus Basin, as of 9:15 this morning. It was needed; things were getting a little thin up there. Brundage is reporting 7 inches of new snow; Tamarack is reporting 5 new inches; and Sun Valley has 4 new inches. The forecast calls for more snow in the mountains today, tonight and tomorrow.

Winter inversion season has arrived…

Inversion conditions – when colder air, clouds and pollution get trapped in the valley, with clear skies above in the mountains – set in this morning in the Treasure Valley, seen here from above at Bogus Basin, which had bluebird skies. A yellow air-quality alert was issued for Boise by the Idaho DEQ, with a prediction for moderate air quality continuing through Wednesday. But by mid-afternoon today, the clouds had lifted down below, and up on the hill, as we left, the fog was arriving with a few snow flurries. As I’m posting this, it’s 22 degrees in Boise and 15 degrees up on the mountain, which is the opposite of an inversion.

Still, the forecast calls for inversion conditions tomorrow, too. If so, I know where it’ll be clear…

Lost skier avoids night on the mountain

Here’s a news item from the Associated Press:

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — A skier who traveled out of the boundaries of the Bogus Basin Ski Area near Boise almost spent a night on the mountain before being spotted by a grooming machine operator. Thirty-year-old Remington Kendall of Boise managed to alert the snow cat operator by signaling with his camera flash after his cell phone died at about 10:30 p.m. Thursday, KBOI2 News reported. He had been reported missing at about 1 p.m. and searchers had called off efforts at 9 p.m. due to darkness. Authorities say Remington was not injured. Snow cat operator Jasun Temple tells KBOI-TV (http://bit.ly/13zr2DQ) that he thought he saw a light but then it disappeared. On the next pass through the area he stopped again and spotted Kendall signaling.

Backside of Bogus set for limited opening Tuesday at noon

Bogus Basin has announced that, thanks to a foot of new snow in the past 72 hours, it will open the No. 6 Pine Creek chairlift on the mountain’s backside on Tuesday, starting at noon. That’s a big step, opening up much more terrain at the local non-profit ski hill during this week’s holiday rush. The ski resort said limited grooming will be done on the Pine Creek side of the mountain on Nugget cat track, Lower Nugget and Easiest Way Down. Also, the Pioneer Lodge will open on Tuesday, and night skiing will start Friday night. Ticket prices will rise to $49 full-day for adults. For now, lifts are open from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. There’s more info here.

Bogus Basin announces Friday opening

Bogus Basin has announced that it will open for skiing on Friday from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., with three chairlifts on the front side of the mountain operating: Deer Point (#1), Showcase (#4), and Coach (#7), along with the Easy Rider magic carpet and a small terrain park in Stewart’s Bowl. Lift tickets will be discounted to $35 for adults for the limited opening. A limited opening also is planned for the Nordic center, with tickets half-price at $11, or $8 for Nordic skiers who arrive after 1 p.m. Round-trip bus service will begin Saturday, as will holiday hours: 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. through Jan. 4. Click below for Bogus’ full announcement.

Brundage to open Friday for the ski season

Brundage Mountain has announced it will open Friday for the ski season, with three lifts, the BlueBird Quad, Lakeview Lift and Easy Street, operating from 9:30 to 4:30 and seven-day operations planned. Early-season conditions remain on the lower half of the mountain, according to spokeswoman April Whitney, due to recent warm temperatures, so the Bear Chair and the lower portions of some runs won't be open, but conditions are expected to be excellent on the Lakeview side; Brundage has gotten 6 inches of new snow since Saturday, and has a 10-inch base but 36 inches at the summit. "Terrain for beginners will, unfortunately, be limited," Whitney said. "We have some snow in the forecast and will open more terrain as soon as it's safe and feasible to do so." Lift tickets will be discounted to $48 for adults; there's more info here. Meanwhile, Bogus Basin, which is reporting a 13" base, is hoping to open for the holiday break by this weekend but has made no announcement; there's a chance of snow in the forecast from tonight through the weekend.

Bogus Basin to stay open yet another week, ‘til April 13

It’s happened again – Bogus Basin is extending its closing date for another week, with daily operations now scheduled to run through April 13 due to good snow conditions, including 23 inches of new snow in the past week. “Spring skiing conditions couldn’t be better,” the resort announced today. The non-profit community ski resort will begin discounting daily lift tickets to $25 this Friday. Weekday operations will be 10 a.m. to 4:30, and weekends 9 a.m. to 4:30. The Nordic center and trails also remain open.

This Sunday, Bogus will celebrate with a “retro” costume theme day and live music from “Bread and Circus” inside the Simplot Lodge at 1 p.m.; on Sunday April 13, there’ll be live music outside the lodge, also at 1. There’s more info here.

After today’s powder dump, Bogus decides to stay open for another week

I’ve been feeling really fortunate that this is my week off work, because the skiing has been great up at Bogus Basin, where there were sunny spring conditions early in the week, followed by a reported 5” (much more in places) powder dump today that made for an honest-to-goodness powder day all over the mountain. Bogus had been scheduled to close for the season this Sunday, but has just made an announcement: “Due to all the fresh snow we’ve gotten, Bogus will be open an additional week! Regular mountain operations will continue until Sunday, April 6th. The entire mountain will be open except for Chair #4 (Showcase, accessible from Chair 1 Deer Point) and Chair #5 (Bitterroot, already closed for the season). Lift tickets will be $25 this Sunday and $39 for the remainder of the week.”

The end-of-season party is still on for this Sunday; it’s just changing its title to the Spring Snow Party, and Boise’s non-profit community ski area promises more music and activities on the mountain the following Sunday. For the remainder of April, there still could be additional “bonus weekends” if snow permits. Night skiing operations have ended for the season.

Legislative session decompression: Spring skiing…

Boise’s non-profit ski resort is delivering the spring skiing this week, from soft, smooth, forgiving corduroy on the frontside in the morning (pictured at right) to sweet spring slush on the backside in the afternoon (shown above). It’s the last hurrah for Bogus Basin; the resort has announced that its last day for the season will be this coming Sunday, with possible “bonus” weekends into April if weather and snow conditions permit. Final-day festivities on Sunday will include $25 lift tickets; the annual PBR Ribbon Hunt and kids’ scavenger hunt from 9-2:30; and a live band from 1-5 p.m.

Bogus is reporting that over the course of the season, it had 240,000 skier visits, a figure consistent with the last two seasons; taught lessons to 27,000 skiers or snowboarders, 70 percent of whom were children; and employed more than 600 seasonal workers. This year’s season started Dec. 8, 2013.

Bogus Basin kicks into gear…

Great skiing up at Bogus Basin this weekend, where the mountain is now in excellent shape, opening up favorite spots that hadn’t been accessible all season until now. Paradise was closed for the weekend for the annual Trudi Bolinder Memorial Super-G race, a USSA qualifier in which hundreds of young ski racers 16 and older from several states competed, bringing what looked like our own little slice of the Olympics to town; here’s a view of the start as one young woman pushes off.

Bogus kicked off its sales of season passes for next season over the past week with strong results; though the $229 sale is over, passes still are available for $259, good for the rest of this season plus all next season. And if you have to pay the additional $30 because you didn’t buy by Sunday night, there’s the consolation that the money’s going to a good cause: Boise’s non-profit, community-owned ski area.

Bogus opens Superior chair

For the first time this season, Bogus Basin has announced that it's opening the Superior chair on the backside today, the last major section of the mountain that's not been able to open so far due to the thin snowpack. There's more info here at the Bogus website, which reports that 5 inches of new snow fell overnight. Superior will be open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., the non-profit ski area announced. Early-season conditions remain, with a reported snow base depth of 23 inches. The best news: There's more snow in the forecast all week, including a National Weather Service forecast for 5 to 9 inches more accumulation overnight tonight.

Bogus Basin opens Pine Creek, Bitterroot, night skiing…

Skis whispering through untouched snow, fog drifting in and out, snow falling lightly but persistently, the delighted whoop of a happy skier – that was me, actually. Bogus Basin did something today that granted a holiday wish for lots of area skiers and snowboarders: It opened up the backside of the mountain. The Pine Creek (Chair 6) and Bitterroot chairs both opened for the first time this season today, nearly doubling the available skiing terrain at Boise’s nonprofit ski resort. The tubing hill also opened today, and night skiing began; that means lift tickets are up to regular-season rates of $49.

The No. 3 Superior chair isn’t open yet, nor is the Paradise area off Pine Creek, as more snow is awaited, and there are still early-season conditions, especially off-trail. But things are up and running in time for the holidays, and plenty of people are having plenty of fun up there. Take it easy on the often-slick road up, and enjoy! I’m off for the next week, and will do the same.

Bogus opens for the season, skiers delight

What a fabulous surprise for Treasure Valley skiers, when Bogus Basin opened yesterday on just one day’s notice. I certainly didn’t expect to be laying down tracks through untouched powder at my home ski resort over the weekend, but there we were! The non-profit resort sprang into action Saturday after receiving close to 5 inches of snow, opening Sunday with three front-side lifts and welcoming nearly 2,000 skiers and snowboarders. Considering the thin base of just 17 inches, the conditions were surprisingly good, and the first tracks were sweet.

I forgot my phone and don’t have a picture to post, but it was particularly beautiful first thing in the morning, with blue skies and sunshine across the cold sparkle. And cold it was; below zero, even. Fortunately, the remedy for cold toes was easily at hand – a hot chocolate break in the lodge. Bogus will be open 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. through the week, 9 a.m. on weekends, and will open more of the mountain when conditions allow; lift tickets are now discounted to $25.

With snow in the forecast, Bogus drops pass prices for this weekend only back to $299

With snow in the forecast, Bogus Basin has launched a surprise, this-weekend-only $299 season pass sale – a price skiers otherwise would have had to buy by Sept. 30 to get; until today, the passes were being sold for $389. At $299 for a season pass and $49 for a single lift ticket, it only takes six days of skiing to break even.

“Snow is on the way, the forecast looks great,” said the non-profit ski resort’s general manager, Alan Moore. “We wanted to give people another chance to secure their season pass. The mountain is ready for snow.” He noted improvements over the summer from new lighting on the terrain park to extensive brush-cutting, thanks to community support that raised the needed funds. The pass sale is good until midnight Sunday, but at the moment, online sales are down, so the best bet is to go visit the Bogus Basin office in person at 2600 Bogus Basin Road; it’s open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The National Weather Service forecast for Bogus, which is just 16.5 miles north of Boise, calls for snow tonight, with 5 to 9 inches accumulation possible, followed by snow showers on Saturday with another possible 2 to 4 inches.

Time to gear up for winter: It’s the 63rd annual Ski Swap…

As the seasons change in Boise, there are a few sure signs each year that winter is on its way. First, the leaves turn, which they did in spectacular, fiery fashion this year. Then, there’s the Ski Swap – and it’s arrived. This year is the 63rd annual Boise Ski Swap, a benefit for the Bogus Basin Ski Education Foundation; equipment check-in at Expo Idaho started at 3 p.m. on Halloween, and the swap opens to buyers at 5 p.m. on Friday. Hours are 5-10 p.m. Friday, 10-8 Saturday and 10-3 on Sunday; it’s a place to find deals on ski or snowboard equipment for the family, outfit the kids, sell off outgrown gear and get ready for the season, with exhibits from everyone from the resorts to the volunteer ski patrol. Admission is $5 on Friday, $3 on Saturday, and either $3 or a can of food on Sunday; kids under 12 are admitted for free. There’s more info here.

The next sign of winter is on the way: The annual Warren Miller ski film, which is coming to Boise’s Egyptian Theater Nov. 21-23. This year’s flick is entitled “Ticket to Ride.”

Snow hits, Bogus Basin extends season pass sale thru Thursday…

It’s snowing again, and Bogus Basin has extended its season pass sale through Thursday at the $229 price.  The week-long sale that had been scheduled to end last night at midnight saw a dramatic change once snow hit the mountain late last week, general manager Alan Moore reports; last Monday, pass sales were about half of normal, but as the week progressed and 9 inches of new snow fell, that turned around to where sales were above normal on the sale’s final day. “As we all know, snow changes everything for Bogus,” Moore said. “We just want to make sure that no one is left out that would have bought a pass with the changed conditions.” The low-priced season passes allow skiers to ski right away, plus all through next season; it only takes five trips to the mountain to break even on buying a pass. Click below for Bogus’ full announcement.

Great view above the city; tricky road up requires patience…

This was the view up at Bogus Basin yesterday as the sun slanted through the clouds. Despite a thin snow cover so far this year, the local non-profit ski resort delivered an outstanding weekend of skiing, with warm, sunny, spring-like conditions on Saturday and a more wintry feel on Sunday complete with crisp air and new snow.

The new snow, which fell overnight Saturday night, left the resort’s access road very slick Sunday morning, but it had cleared off nicely by the afternoon, rendering all the more inexplicable the fatal accident in which a 50-year-old Boisean in a blue Porsche careened off a 400-foot embankment and was killed. It’s a narrow and winding road, and buses and other slow vehicles sometimes slow down traffic, but with a little patience, everyone usually gets down safely. Be careful out there.

Up where the air is clear…

While we shiver and sniffle in the frigid temperatures of the inversion-plagued Boise valley, there's a whole different world just 16 miles to the north at Bogus Basin. This view from the top of Chair 1 yesterday afternoon snows the smog-filled valley below in which the city is hidden. The non-profit ski resort's snow cover may be a bit thin, but it is just gorgeous up there. Yesterday, it hit better than 45 degrees with deep blue skies, bright sunshine and fresh, clean air. There were people skiing in sunglasses and no hats; everyone was shedding layers, unzipping coats and slathering on the sunscreen. Rock skis still are in order, and there are few runs they're now able to groom, but the terrain park is open on frontside to the joy of a whole lot of kids, and the snow is holding up beautifully in the Superior and Triangle areas on the back side, especially for those who enjoy skiing bumps. Best of all is the weather - it was really hard to leave yesterday and head back down the hill…

Bogus opens Superior for night skiing

Now here's some news: Bogus Basin has announced that having received more than 9 inches of snow over the last few days, it now has enough to open the No. 3 Superior chair for night skiing. That high-speed chairlift, on the back side of the mountain, has previously only been open for daytime skiing; click below for the full announcement from Bogus.

Up above the fog…

Even though I know it'll be there, there's something startling about coming up out of a frigid, foggy inversion, with snowflakes floating around in the low, gray sky in Boise, into brilliant sunshine above it all up at Bogus Basin. It was like an island of blue sky and sun up there today, with an ocean of cold fog lapping at the edges of all the surrounding mountains down below us.

Bogus is still going strong despite the thin snow cover, but rock skis still are in order.  

Bogus Basin to open night skiing, Superior chair on Wednesday

Bogus Basin has announced that it'll open for night skiing on Wednesday, Dec. 26th, and also that day will open the No. 3 Superior chairlift, the resort's newest high-speed quad and the last major side of the mountain not yet open for skiing. Starting Wednesday, a full day/night lift ticket will be $48; a night lift ticket will be $22; click below for the full announcement. That makes tomorrow - Christmas Day - the last day for discounted, $30 lift tickets; the resort will be open from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Dashing through the snow…

It's amazing how much difference a few inches of snow can make. Our local ski mountain was starting to look a little like a bran muffin in places on Saturday, but after 3 inches of snow overnight, Sunday morning it was transformed into a glittering, frosted cupcake (albeit with a few nuts and raisins still poking through). This shot was taken Sunday; it's the view from Paradise. Really. From the run called Paradise on the back side of Bogus Basin. Since then, a few more inches of snow have fallen, and then a few more inches. The wind did its part, redistributing the snow around the mountain, and today was an awesome powder day.

Opening day at Bogus Basin…

This shot of sunrise at Bogus Basin this morning was taken before the lifts opened, but not before skiers already were getting their gear ready and heading out to the lift base. Despite early-season conditions, it was a very fun opening day for Boise's local non-profit ski resort, with some untracked powder up-top early, a variety of conditions around the mountain and through the day, and a whole lot of smiling skiers and boarders. There was even plenty of room to spread out, with Chair 6, Pine Creek, on the backside opening today along with the whole front side.

The kids I rode up with on the first chair ride this morning had counted - they said we were on the 10th chair (woo-hoo!). And kudos to Bogus for opening up despite the thin early snow; everyone I talked to, without exception, was just glad to be up there and out on the slopes again, even if it meant some rocks and the like were still poking through (bring your rock skis).

Next up: More snow. We're ready…

Bogus Basin to open for skiing Friday

It's looking mighty pretty up toward Bogus Basin today, with the recent new snow shining in the sunshine, and now Boise's non-profit ski resort has announced that it'll open up for skiing on Friday.The resort will open its front side plus the No. 6 Pine Creek chair on the backside, and skiers are advised to expect early-season conditions; lift tickets will be discounted to $30, and hours will be 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. You can read the resort's full announcement here. Local skiers have been anxiously awaiting this news, after last year's record-late Jan. 19 opening.

Sending off the season…

Spring skiing, costumes and frivolity were the orders of the day as Bogus Basin held its end-of-season sendoff on Saturday, marking the close of a late-starting but still-fun ski season for the local non-profit ski resort. Bogus has announced a bonus weekend, when it will reopen next Saturday and Sunday with just the No. 1 Deerpoint and Coach chairs operating, along with the Easy Rider carpet; tickets will be discounted, and there's more info here.

Spring on the mountain…

Some years, Bogus Basin doesn't get any spring skiing, because winter runs right up until closing day, and then it's all over. Not this year. Over the weekend, as temperatures nudged and topped 70 degrees in the valley, Bogus Basin skiers enjoyed a cornucopia of corn snow, a slathering of soft slush, and the warm feeling that spring has sprung…

Bogus Basin to open new Superior chair Sat.

Bogus Basin has just announced that it will open its new Superior high-speed quad chairlift tomorrow for the season. In addition to the new lift, the resort also will open the Pine Creek and Bitterroot Basin areas of the mountain on Saturday; night skiing will start Wednesday.

Finally! Bogus Basin gets enough snow to open lifts

WINTER SPORTS — After getting 10 inches of snow on Wednesday, Bogus Basin Mountain Recreation opened for the ski season today.

The Jan. 19 opening is the latest in the history of the southern Idaho ski area, according to this report in the Idaho Statesman.