Reminiscences of my version of Alta’s 75th ski season

I have come to really love this place. Skiing at Alta has kept me sane and entertained for two winters now, and I am now at a loss for entertainment on my random days off. If I wasn’t at work, I was skiing. That’s what you do when you have a season pass. And now, the 75th season at Alta is coming to a close this weekend.

In front of Devil's Castle.

In front of Devil’s Castle.

East Castle from Supreme lift.

East Castle from Supreme lift.

Alta is a place with tradition, and I think that is why I like it so much. And it involves mountains. (Those are my reasons for loving Austria so much, too). Alta is a skiers-only mountain and unabashedly so. The locals don’t use the new safety bars and waits at the lifts are few and far between — like maybe 10 minutes an hour after Supreme opens on a powder day.

I am comfortable skiing Alta, but there are still plenty of challenges and areas I haven’t skied because powder and steep slopes still make me nervous. I learned to ski as a teenager in Ohio where powder does not exist and the slopes are covered in ice.

Showing Catherine's Area's powder to my dad.

Showing Catherine’s Area’s powder to my dad.

I ski alone every day, too, which also makes me nervous, which is a bit irrational. I’m not afraid of skiing Alta’s far back corner of expert terrain called Catherine’s Area because someone gave me a brief tour this year, but I am afraid of hurting myself somewhere off the High Traverse, in plain view of the Collins lift, and no one coming to rescue me. This means that I have skied Devil’s Castle and not Alf’s High Rustler. I hope that I can make that run Sunday.

Looking up at the rocks above the High T.

Looking up at the rocks above the High T.

Up close and personal with Devil's Castle.

Up close and personal with Devil’s Castle.

Alta scared me the first time I skied the terrain. I wrote about it here: Surviving (and liking) skiing in Utah. The mountains were tall and scary even when they were shrouded in clouds. And now I love skiing them. I love the view of Devil’s Castle from the Sugarloaf lift and from Catherine’s Area.

Devil's Castle from Sugarloaf lift.

Devil’s Castle from Sugarloaf lift.

I love the view downcanyon from the top of Mambo and High Main Street.

The view downcanyon from the top of Mambo and High Main Street.

The view downcanyon from the top of Mambo and High Main Street.

I love the frosty trees below the Supreme lift.

Frosty trees from Supreme lift.

Frosty trees from Supreme lift.

I will be sad to see the season come to a close. Here’s a couple more photos of some views of my ski season:

Mount Superior from Catherine's Area.

Mount Superior from Catherine’s Area.

Looking from Alta, across Snowbird, to Mount Timpanogos.

Looking from Alta, across Snowbird, to Mount Timpanogos.

Mount Baldy from Collins lift.

Mount Baldy from Collins lift.

Fresh tracks in the Ballroom.

Fresh tracks in the Ballroom.

Jon and I at the torch parade on New Year's Eve.

Jon and I at the torch parade on New Year’s Eve.

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