Alta is currently defending itself at a federal appeals court on Friday from a lawsuit saying that their exclusion of snowboarders is unconstitutional.
“Quite simply, the Constitution neither recognizes nor protects a right to snowboard,” Alta attorneys wrote in court documents
The Alta attorney actually went so far as to say that the skiing experience at Alta is “safer” due to the lack of snowboarders because skiers don’t have to worry about being hit by snowboarders-sideways-stance-blindspot and their wide, sweeping turns. This means that Alta attorneys are saying snowboarders are more “dangerous” than skiers.
The US Forest Service who issues a use permit to Alta ski area is backing Alta in this court case.
“Defendants [Alta] have transformed public land into a private country club controlled by those exclusive, elitist, and discriminatory views.” – Wasatch Equality attorneys wrote
The 4 snowboarders who filed the appeal say that Alta’s snowboarding ban is based on outdated stereotypes and encourages beef between skiers and snowboarders. They state that keeping snowboarders off public forest land is discrimination.
These snowboarders had initially attempted to get a judge to see their case in September 2014 but US District Judge Dee Benson threw the case out of court. Judge Dee stated that snowboarders don’t have a constitutional right to snowboard and added that allowing their lawsuit would open the flood gates for many other groups to claim discrimination against private companies.
Oral arguments will be heard from each side of the case this week.
Only 2 other ski resorts in the USA prohibit snowboarding: Deer Valley, Utah and Mad River Glenn, Vermont.