Skiing at Alta, Utah

The Start

This was my second mountain in Utah, the first was Solitude. They in the same area so I am not 100% sure if they are the same mountain or not. But definitely the same mountain range!

We stayed at a motel near the bus station to take the public bus up. The road to the resort is pretty tight and windy. We didn’t want to deal with it plus parking. Which was great because people were parking along the shoulder all the way down!

The public bus is 953 from Midvale Union Fort Station. It is free for Ikon pass holders. Make sure to tap on and off, but if you forget to tap off, no big.

The Ikon pass is an international pass that allows you to go to all the resorts on their list with no separate fees. There are some restrictions, but check it out!

Set Up

Alta is pretty small. It is still a decent sized resort, but it is smaller than Jackson Hole and Big Sky. It is only for skiers, so sorry snowboarders!

There is one stop for Alta, which leads to the village. They allow you to leave your bags without a locker in the Goldminer’s Daughter lodge at the base.

We also went on a Friday- so many kids! Apparently some schools have Friday off in order for kids to go skiing. I am glad they are promoting fitness, but they should be in school! Or at least, not while I am skiing (haha).

Like the other resorts, you can go straight to the chairlift with your pass in your pocket. However, it appears the locals do not like the Ikon pass. I went up to buy lunch and asked if they give discounts for Ikon pass holders (some places do). The guy gave me so much sass.

“You should be happy you are allowed to ski here.”

I didn’t know what to say. I was thrown off by his hostility.

I also was tired of eating chili, see past ski posts, that I got a chicken sandwich. There is also free water! I saw there was one free refill for hot drinks- that seemed like a nice deal, but I don’t know how much it was.

I found that Alta was more expensive than the other places we went to in terms of resort food, but the food was good and we had no other choice haha! Brining your own food is always a good budgeting technique, but buying it at the hill seems simpler since you don’t have to carry it and heat it up (if you want something hot).

The Environment

I found that because it is skier only, lots of advanced skiers go here. I felt overwhelmed on the intermediate slopes as these advanced skiers are going so fast down the hill after just completing the double and some, triple, black diamonds.

The day was beautiful- sunny, no clouds, and the powder was great! You could see people walking along the mountain ridge to reach snow that has not been touched. Those are the true experts!

I found Alta more intermediate to advanced to expert. Not a lot of beginner runs.

We did some black diamond runs, which ended up not being as chaotic with people as the intermediate runs. There were a bunch of photographers about that you can look online later and purchase photos. Or do what I did and screenshoted them. They have a watermark, but that’s ok!

You can eat on the mountain, so no need to go back to the village. There are two main chairs at the very bottom and in between there is a rope thing that pulls skiers so they don’t have to struggle walking across. That was so cool!

Moving Forward

The rope thing

Besides the fact that I felt the advanced and expert skiers had no regard for us little skiers, I rather liked Alta. I wouldn’t mind going back. Of course, the day was beautiful! But, I think because they offer so many different levels of runs (from intermediate up), you can test your way to black diamond. For example, some black diamond runs are short so you can get a judge of the bumps and steepness.

I ended up buying some souvenirs for friends at the end of the day while Dad drank a $3 pint beer. The rest of the workers were very pleasant unlike the lunch guy. So maybe he was just cranky.

My recommendation is to get on the bus as it goes up the mountain (one more stop) because when it comes back south, all the seats will be full. Getting on now, will guarantee you a seat (unless there are a lot of people getting on with you).

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