Alta, UT Backcountry Report: Spicy Main Chute & Perfect Groomers

Miles Clark | | Conditions ReportConditions Report
Cane stoked to top out in Main Chute on 11,000′ Mt. Baldy at Alta Ski Area, UT. image: snowbrains

Report from November 17th, 2019

The past two days of skiing at Alta Ski Area, UT have been damn fun.

Hundreds of skiers and riders climbed up and slid down Alta this past weekend.

Sunshine, light winds, and good vibes ruled the weekend at Alta.

Unknown ripper gal blasting down Main Chute on Sunday. image: snowbrains

On Saturday, we hiked up and skied down the Collin’s lift groomer and both the run and the grooming were immaculate (we watched them groom it twice as we hiked up).

On Sunday, we hiked up Main Chute on 11,000′ Mt. Baldy.

Main Chute was chalky, pretty beat up by skier traffic, tight in spots, spicy at the top, and great fun.

Looking down the rocky top section of Main Chute off 11,000′ Mt. Baldy at Alta on Sunday. image: snowbrains

The top 60′ of the chute are rocky and funky and some chose to downclimb or skip this section.

We chose to sideslip and sidestep the top section and it was a bit spicy.

The rest of Main Chute was great:  chalky,  bumpy, grippy, and gorgeous.

Miss Erica cramponing up Main Chute. image: snowbrains

We skied it slow and were careful about the rocks on the apron.

Once on the apron, it’s best to traverse straight to the groomer as there isn’t enough snowpack to keep you from hitting rocks on every turn.

The groomer down, like on Saturday, was fantastic.

Ben just about to tackle the final pitch of Main Chute on Sunday. image: snowbrains

Alta was scheduled to open on November 23rd but that date has been pushed back to November 29th due to a lack of snow.

NOAA is reporting that Alta’s snowpack is at approximately 66% of average for today’s date.

There is a bit of snow in the forecast for Alta mid-week this week.


Alta snowpack at 66% of average to date. image: NRDS/NOAA, 11/18/19
The vast majority of the Western USA looking dry right now. image: NRDS/NOAA, 11/18/19


image: noaa, 11/18/19

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