1995 - 2000 vintage Dash Covers
1997 hood is opened by just lifting the hood like the hood of a car with a little resistance.
The large curved (at the top) dashboard is enclosed at the top by an upholstered quarter spherical bubble-like cover. This is hinged at the back (toward the windshield). Maybe the latches located at either side of the this dash cover is very tight and will not let you open it.
Place your hands on either side of the cover and pry upwards. You really want these latches to grip the cover tightly so don't lube them to make opening the cover too easy.