Montana's Red Lodge Mountain, popular with snowsports enthusiasts on the western side of the Heartland, has announced they are beginning an improvement plan to upgrade the ski area's lift service to the lower mountain and improve the learning area terrain.
A busy weather setup from coast to coast with an active pattern taking shape for the upcoming Presidents' Day weekend. Here’s the latest forecast scoop in this week’s SnoCast.
This week brought more wild swings in the weather country-wide. The West has benefited greatly with building snow cover, and the East eyes the next weekend wintry wallop. Here’s the forecast in this week’s SnoCast.
Winter is here and committed, covering the U.S. in new snow from coast to coast. With more white stuff ahead for the East, Midwest, and West, we think this will be a February to remember on the slopes. Here’s where to find new snow this week.
With Valentine’s Day Friday and (hopefully) an extended holiday weekend for you, there’s a lot to love about the forecast!
Back in 1965, when Snowbird was still a dream coming together in Ted Johnson’s mind, an architect — designing the ski resort secretly taking shape in Utah’s Wasatch Mountains — pondered how to get thousands of skiers up Little Cottonwood Canyon, whose steep and narrow walls were lined with avalanche paths.
Several large storms will develop across the country in this week’s SnoCast. Great news as the ski season ramps up following the Thanksgiving holiday. Here are the latest details.
While you may not want to commit to the full ski bum lifestyle, plan your course schedule correctly and the student life can still accommodate plenty of slope time, especially if there’s a mountain resort nearby. While some just want to head to the mountains for spring break, living within easy reach of a resort means you can take full advantage of the many college-age season passes out there.
It’s been an incredible January for so many ski areas across North America. January will be one to remember with snow-packed storms, keeping soft turn after soft turn.
Nighttime in Alta, with Salt Lake City down the canyon. (Alta/Facebook)
Just by its name -- Alta Ski Area – you can tell that you’re skiing “old school.” The famed powder mountain is one of the oldest in the country, opening in 1939, and much is the same today. Don’t bring your snowboard: Alta’s one of three resorts that prohibit knuckle-draggers. But do bring goggles, powder suits and perhaps a snorkel for, typically, the Alta gets 500-plus inches.
Terrain. Alta is two cirques side by side. The front under 11,000-foot Mt. Baldy rolls gently down the middle. But get up on the sides, and that’s where Alta really speaks to you. Be ready for lots of traversing to get to iconic Sunspot or High Rustler skier’s right or Ballroom to the left off Collins high-speed. Take Wildcat chair for a trip up into Alta’s original trail – and peek over into Snowbird. Or traverse over to the backside for an array of wide-open slopes in Greeley Bowl, the gnarly drops off Supreme lift, or the only greens on the hill -- gentle long cruisers all the way to the base.
Tickets. Used to be cheapest day ticket around, but now at full retail of $96. Online, reloads and multi-days cut prices. Alta is in the Mountain Collective, also has combo with Snowbird. Beginners get late-afternoon deal for novice-only tickets for Albion lift.
Ski School. Alf Engen Ski School among nation’s best, especially for powder skiing. Alta Lodge hosts renowned multi-day “performance ski camps.”
Eat. Basic skier’s fare on the hill at Watson’s Shelter on the front, and Alf’s Lodge on the back. Down below, the same during the day, but the fondu flames fire up every evening at lodges.
Lodging. Three classics await -- Alta Lodge, Peruvian Lodge, Rustler Lodge – with European cuisine, cozy rooms and steins of beer. Goldminer’s and Snowpine a bit newer but also compact. A limited number of condos and townhouses up near the mountain. Down below, town of Sandy is full of VRBO’s and motels.
Transportation. The airport-to-lift trip is the quickest in country. Utah encourages taking a bus up Little Cottonwood rather than fight the traffic, which can be monumental if it’s snowing. Shuttles run regularly back down to town and nonstop to the airport. Parking’s cheek-to-jowl around the base (no lot shuttles).
Insider Tips: You want challenge? Head skier’s left off Wildcat and stick near the boundary rope. All it does is get steeper, cliff-ier and longer the farther you go. Want to miss crowds? Stay overnight and hope the access road is closed by avalanche.
It'll be skiers only at Alta Ski Area after latest ruling from federal court. (Alta)
A final round of appeals by a group seeking to force Alta Ski Area to admit snowboarders has failed, leaving the Utah resort as one of three U.S. mountains that only skiers can enjoy.
All across ski nation, winter mountain resorts are devising ways to grow the sport by keeping kids and beginners coming back to the slopes. Utah is no exception.
The pre-World War II years were halcyon days for the ski industry in the American West, with more than two dozen iconic ski areas firing up their lifts for the first time – including Alta Ski Area in 1938.
It's official. The season - at least in Utah - is going down as the warmest and driest on record. According to the National Weather Service, temps were consistently 7 to 13 degrees above normal from December to March; and that news comes on top of the reports that our nation’s winter overall was the 19th-warmest in the last 120 years.
Conversations have begun in earnest to figure out how to more efficiently connect Salt Lake City with seven of Utah’s ski and snowboard resorts -- and reduce environmental impact at the same time.
As I sat in in Alf’s watching the world ski by, including my daughter’s AYC (Alta Youth Club) class, I overheard a woman behind me. “Did you know you can ask them to slow down a lift for you?” she said incredulously to her husband.
Because of its renowned ski school and equally famed terrain, Utah's Alta Ski Area has become a center for adult ski camps aimed at giving the experienced skier a way to get better. The lodges at the base of the Utah resort play a critical role in bringing comfort and convenience to these multi-day sessions.