Hogadon's Finishing Touches

Casper, Wyoming - After a long year of construction, Hogadon Lodge will officially cut the ribbon this weekend but for skiers and snowboarders, the season opener is still some time away as finishing touches are still be added.

“They got a lot of life out of the old building, but it was time to upgrade it a little,” said Chris Smith, Hogadon’s Superintendent.

The area that once housed the small, outdated lodge is now home to a state of the art ski lodge that weeks before it's grand opening, was already booking weddings and office parties. It's all about the view.

“It’s a little over a 180 degree view of the area and on a clear day you can see all the way to the Big Horns,” said Smith.

Hogadon employees are still hard at work preparing the rental booth as well as adding some new features for beginners.

“The first one people experience is a mini half pipe, and it's where you learn the basics and fundamentals and some slightly more complex skills,” said the lodge’s new snowsports instructor, Jeff Brier. “And when you've advanced from there you go to an area that's shaped banked turns. That helps you link turns together and learn how to transition from left to right basically.”

One of the biggest worries of lodge goers is an increased price of season passes. But dread not says Chris Smith, for the prices have not changed.

“This year, you end up with a brand new facility, but no changes for passes or ticket prices for this year. So passes are on sale now for $265 through December 1st. Then they'll go back to their regular rate,” Smith said.

The crew at Hogadon, as anxious as us to try it all out; next week the snowmaking is expected to begin. One can only hope Mother Nature isn't too far behind.

“If the weather holds, we'll start making snow next week. Looks like right now we might get four good days of snow making in,” said Smith.

Saturday's ribbon cutting begins at 3 followed by an open house. If you haven't seen it yet, it may have you running to grab your skis.