A Love Story About Casper, the Mountain, and Skiing
Third generation Casperite Rebecca Hunt recently published her fifth book this year: Casper Mountain Ski History.
"I could not have done it without the team," Hunt told K2Radio News.
She also wrote about Wyoming Medical Center for its centennial. She wrote a history of Natrona County thereafter as a fundraiser project for Fort Caspar Museum, and a compendium of pioneer stories for the Bishop Home Museum and Daughters of the American Revolution.
WATCH: Rebecca Weaver Hunt Talks to Pinky Ellis in 2010 about Wyoming Medical Center and Natrona County.
You might know her as the lady in the red hat who tells stories at Crimson Dawn for the annual Midsummer’s Eve celebration.
Not only is Hunt a storyteller, but she’s a retired history professor as well. She spends most of her time in Colorado, but comes home for the summers to stay in the cabin that her father built when she was young.
It’s a round stone house with an A-frame, she told K2Radio News. Her father was inspired by Frank Loyd Wright when he built the house in the 1940s.
“It’s ours, and it’s gonna be our grandkids’ one day” she beamed.
Hunt wanted to write the book because her dad was one of the founders of skiing on the mountain.
He learned how to ski from boy scout leaders Ted French and Bill Haines.
"For my Uncle Wayne it meant that it got him in the 10th mountain division in World War II. For my Dad it meant that he came back and he wanted to keep it going for the next generation," she said.
She was able to collect over 40 oral histories and 100 photos from people in the community.
Hunt said, “From the very first skiing in the 1920s forward this was always interlocking communities of people working together with the end that they wanted recreation on the mountain, they wanted skiing on the mountain–downhill, crosscountry–and so they worked together in the old days to set up a corporation, create Hogadon, buy lifts, train ski patrol…”
One of the unique things about Hogadon is that you park at the top and ski down to catch the lift back up. Hunt said that so many other early ski resorts were modeled after what Europe was doing in the Swiss and Austrian valleys, but Casper was bucking the trend, “Both in terms of who put it together and in terms of what people created.”
Locals can find the book around town at Wind City Books, Mountain Sports, Lou Taubert Ranch Outfitters, the Fort Caspar Museum, the National Historic Trails Interpretive Center and Hogadon Basin Ski Area.