Lookout Pass on a predawn Monday morning appears to be deserted until you’re out of the car and hear the sounds of the snowcats and snowmobiles far up the hill as employees work around the clock to prepare the resort for opening. There are 20-30 employees working at Lookout on any given weekday, and this number swells to 60 on busy weekends.
A busy energy flows behind the scenes as vehicles are repaired, food begins to be cooked and chair lifts spin to life for another day of work. Employees exude the typical positive mountain vibe even as they go about doing the more mundane tasks required to make the four-chair hill run smoothly.
The best job? That would have to be the snowcat drivers who pass the night alone on the mountain in the serenity of a heated cab surrounded by million-dollar views as they churn out fresh lines of corduroy snow to be enjoyed by all come daylight.
A snowcat finishes an early morning run down the hill. The snowcat will run for 36 hours straight preparing for the weekends.
Employees shovel snow off buldings before opening.
A snowcat grooms the hill while the chairs wait to start up at Lookout Pass.
Ski patrol members Jeff Gately and Cheryl Ward head to the lift to start work.
Lookout Pass mechanic Tim Matts working in the shop.
Lift Supervisor Stephen Jones snowmobiles to Lift No.4 for an inspection.