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Posts tagged: Alta

Refresher Storm

By , March 6, 2017 3:19 PM

Not to complain about the skiing today but by this year’s standards it was nothing to write home about.  The storm totals were up there with Alta recording 14″ of fresh but the winds really put a damper on the snow quality.  In spots you could find turns that felt like they were waist deep but those turns were followed by either a chunky layer or some shallow cream.

We found our best turns in Eagle’s Nest where there was a bit of wind protection and even Thirds was skiing great before noon.  No gates opened today besides Catherine’s so as long as we don’t get any more 100 mph winds tonight the skiing in Backside and the Shoulder should be pretty rad tomorrow.  Get it while you can.  No major storms are forecasted to impact our area anytime during the next week.

All Time

By , February 23, 2017 9:01 PM

The past couple of days at Alta have brought some of the best ski conditions we’ve seen all season.  That’s saying a lot.  At the time of this writing Alta has seen a storm total of 39″ and counting.

Yesterday was deep but nothing compared to today.  It didn’t even matter that all of Alta’s gates remained closed all day.  The snow nuked so hard from opening to close that your tracks were almost instantly filled in.  I found my deepest turns in Thirds and North Rustler but you really couldn’t go wrong no matter where you skied.  Crowds weren’t bad either.

The forecast for the coming week looks great with additional snow forecasted tonight and another storm scheduled to impact the Wasatch on Monday.  Get those powder boards waxed!


President’s Day Weekend Pow

By , February 19, 2017 8:40 PM

What a pleasant surprise.  The storm produced more than anticipated. A few inches yesterday, a few more overnight and a burst this morning brought this storm total to 18″!  The mountain was busy, but it didn’t feel that crowded on the slopes.  

Conditions were good all over; deep and smooth.  The snow kept up all day, covering and melting on you at all times.  Always feels good to ski soft fresh snow and great to have the season still providing. Plenty of winter to come up at Alta!   President’s day will bring some crowds, but lots of openings will help disperse skiers.  The forecast looks promising with a good chance of snow Wednesday and Thursday. Keep it coming!

Refresher Storm

By , February 11, 2017 6:34 PM

This refresher storm helped tremendously after rain fell at Alta last week. Alta received 14 inches overnight and 17 inches overall from this storm, which refilled the mountain. Skiers had plenty to choose from today. Backside opened right away and the Shoulder late morning. Catherine’s and Supreme area skied soft and smooth.

It was on the warmer side today with temps in the 30s and rising through the day. Snow got a bit heavy towards the bottom. Mostly cloudy skies and some mist made for variable visibility. But it’s always a joyous occasion to make turns with friends and family. Alta has a way of replenishing the soul.

Sunday looks like it will be a clear, gorgeous day to go up to enjoy the mountains. High pressure builds this week and there is a good chance for new snow towards next weekend. Have fun and be safe up there!

Creamy Mid-Week Storm Cycle

By , February 7, 2017 7:35 PM

Looking for some fun activities this month up at Alta? Look no further than ACE (Alta Community Enrichment). They have some great happenings this month from the WEXL Ping Pong Invitational tomorrow night, Feb  8th (can someone say Balls of Fury?) to Flamenco dancing on February 20th.  ACE never disappoints when it comes to music, either. Stonefed, local jam band, will be playing at the Peruvian Bar on Sunday February 19th.  Whatever your pleasure, ACE has got you covered.

February has brought more than just snow, activities and music. Nate (The Daily Pow extraordinaire) and his wife Katie just welcomed their first little shredder on February 2nd.  We apologize for the not as frequent daily conditions reports, but Nate will be back before you know it.  The storm outlook seems promising, forecasting to start snowing again Thursday night. Last weekend was a nice break in weather, giving skiers their blue bird days before more weather rolled in. This week’s storm didn’t hit as hard as we all wanted, but skiing has still been smooth and creamy. Our hopes are high for this coming weekend.

Clear Skies and Clean Air!

By , January 29, 2017 7:03 PM

Another gorgeous day up here at Alta! High temps of 33 and not a cloud in the sky. Whether you were at Alta Java grabbing a coffee, drinking a beer on top of Baldy or shredding the pow that was left from this week’s storm, it was great to be out of inversion and in the mountains. Baldy Chutes opened and rumor has it, a local hiked a keg for a mountaintop celebration. Devil’s Castle opened just after one, which was a little wind affected, but still skied smooth and creamy in parts. The Apron looked to be skiing soft and groomers were ripping. Fun to be had all around!

Over 160 inches of snow fell in January and we don’t want to see it go, but the forecast has another storm rolling in on Friday February 3rd.  Let’s hope February gives us the goods.



Biggest Dump of the Year

By , January 24, 2017 4:41 PM

Alta has seen it’s biggest dump of the season over the past few days.  With a storm total of 74″ and counting conditions don’t get much deeper than today!  After a full day of road and mountain closures it was nice to get a taste of what we were all missing out on yesterday.

Patrol did a great job getting a good portion of the mountain open.  Right off the bat skiers were allowed to access all shots off of the High T and Wildcat Chair.  Sugarloaf had a delayed opening but was up and running by 11:30 helping to disperse the crowds.  The snow skied deep everywhere well into the afternoon with Powder Paradise claiming the top spot for deepest run of the day.

The forecast looks decent with a few more mini-storms scheduled to effect the Wasatch over the next 24 hours.  After that high pressure looks to set in.  Get it while you can!

Alta’s Top 10 Intermediate Runs

By , January 21, 2017 7:45 PM

Alta has a reputation as being a mecca for experts; however there are plenty of turns to be had for those mere mortal, moderate skiers. There are plenty of wide open, modest pitch blue/green runs for beginners, intermediates and for those who are interested in going off-piste.  You can also find intermediate bowls for those just learning how to ski powder.  If you are a beginner or intermediate skier, check out my top favorite blue/green runs here at Alta.


Mambo to Corkscrew

This combo run is for intermediate skiers which allow you to ski top to bottom, without stopping.  Ride Collins lift up and ski down Mambo and at approximately 2/3 of the way down you will catch Meadow and then connect to Corkscrew for the final leg. Alta recently invested in widening the top of Corkscrew to make it a more desirable run, which is now seamless from top to bottom.  


Devil’s Way to Devil’s Elbow

Ride Collins back up and just over the top drop in to Devil’s Way. It’s pretty steep at first, and then will level out. Be sure to keep your speed for the longer flat ahead. This will turn into Devil’s Elbow which meanders down the mountain at the perfect pitch. Be sure and stop to check out Devil’s Castle, a dark rugged peak that arises above Cecret Lake, for a view of the ultimate backdrop.


Upper Big Dipper to Rock N’ Roll

The main blue off of Supreme lift is Upper Big Dipper. This is a challenging Blue that allows you to ski down while being able to check out the black diamonds that jut down below.  Maybe you try those blacks next time ? About half way down, keep left and merge onto Rock N’ Roll for an Alta favorite.


Crooked Mile

For those who are still in the beginner stage, anything off of Sunnyside will be good for you. Remember that Alta offers a ski lift ticket for $5 after 3 pm on Sunnyside lift. Pretty awesome deal if you are teaching your kid to ski or have just started yourself. The Crooked Mile is my favorite off of Sunnyside.  This run strolls on down back to the lift, giving the skier views of back country locals beloved Patsy Marley. It also gives you direct access to Alta Java, located at Albion, where you can stop by a pick me up.


Aggie’s Alley

This solid blue run is located right off of Wildcat Lift. This does have a steeper pitch, but when you are ready for it, it will turn into a favorite. Aggie’s Alley drops you off at mid mountain where you can catch Meadow down and then hang right to the Rustler Cat Track.  Here you can enjoy a very modest pitch slope that ambles down the mountain back to Collins.


Sweet N’ Easy

Cecret lift is the most majestic and tranquil lift at Alta. It’s slow moving, but worth the beauty you get to witness.  The peaceful nature of this area is one not to be missed. There are two green runs off the top, Rabbit and Sweet N’ Easy. Life doesn’t get much better than that.


Racecourse Saddle

Another favorite off of Collins is Racecourse Saddle. You catch the Saddle Traverse from Mambo about a quarter of the way down. You turn right on to the traverse and it drops you off at the top of Racecourse Saddle. This steeper pitch is for upper intermediates who are feeling confident and ready to try some of the more difficult blues.



For those intermediate skiers that want to stretch their powder experience, you’ll want to make sure you try out Ballroom, located at the top of Collins and directly under Mount Baldy. This isn’t a groomed run and you will need to traverse to get there, which is why it is considered a blue square and black diamond combo.  Ballroom is a wide open bowl where you can practice skiing powder. It links directly up with Main Street, a moderate Blue run. So if you are having trouble, remember there is an escape route just around the corner. Nearly all the trails at Alta will connect with an easy way down, so don’t fret!



Similar to Ballroom in the sense that this is not a groomed run, Catherine’ offers those that have conquered the rest of the mountain a new set of challenges.  The slopes in this remote area are mild with a gentle pitch.  Accessible off of the Supreme Chair, Catherine’s provide skiers with a great place to start dialing in those off-piste skills.  The snow is always soft so don’t worry if you fall, it won’t hurt.


Greely Hill

Probably the most difficult of our top 10 intermediate runs because of it’s intimidating access.  To find this area you will have to overcome the rat-race that is the High-T.  Once you reach the top of Alta from the Collins lift follow signs for the High Traverse.  Take it slow as this traverse can become bumpy and icy days after a storm.  Follow the traverse all the way until you reach a green carpet that wraps you around to the backside of Alta.  From there continue North until you see the friendly slopes of Greely Hill to your right.  Wide open and always fresh up top, Greely Hill will give you a chance to see some of the areas where you’ll be skiing once you graduate to Alta’s expert runs.


Almost 40 percent of the terrain at Alta is considered suitable for skiers with intermediate skills. What a great mountain to try and stretch those abilities!  


Upcoming ACE Events

By , January 19, 2017 4:09 PM

Looking for something to do in the Alta community? You can always find interesting opportunities in Little Cottonwood Canyon through Alta Community Enrichment (ACE). Check out their website at ACE is a nonprofit aimed to promote learning and create opportunities for individual and group participation in arts, cultural events and education.

This month they have put on live music every Sunday night at the Peruvian.  They just finished a backcountry 101 Avalanche course for Alta business employees. On Friday January 20th, ACE presents Eric Foxman at Our Lady of the Snow at 6:30. He is a member of the Portland Storytellers Guild and will humor and inspire you with his true stories collected from around the world.

Also, don’t miss out on National Geographic’s explorer Mike Libecki.  This is his 18th annual presentation on his adventures around the world to some of the most remote, exotic locations.  This event is also a fund raiser for The Humane Society and Nepal Earthquake Fund/Human Outreach Project with a massive raffle of gear and clothing for the benefit.  Hope to see you there!

Little Chute Opens For The First Time This Season

By , January 15, 2017 10:07 PM

Mt. Baldy for the win today! This was where the party was at. Brilliant, blue bird skies and temps getting up to 32 degrees made for the ultimate hiking experience. Everyone was there, wanting to catch the opening of the Baldy Chutes. We skied Little Chute where the snow was soft and the turns were flawless. Even with the large crowds, there was still plenty of powder left for everyone.

Lift lines were a bit long in the morning, but cleared after lunch. Groomers off of Sugarloaf were fun and grippy. Highboy was bumped out, but the snow was still forgiving. It was a beautiful day to be up in the mountains and out of the inversion.  MLK Day will be another gorgeous one and by midweek we should see another storm rolling in. Thank you January, let’s keep it up!