Alta Ski Area to open November 25, but recommends skiing for “experts only”

Nov 22, 2023, 3:00 PM

Fresh snow falls on skiers at Alta Ski Area on Thursday, Dec. 9, 2021....

FILE - Fresh snow falls on skiers at Alta Ski Area on Thursday, Dec. 9, 2021. (Spenser Heaps/Deseret News)

(Spenser Heaps/Deseret News)

ALTA, Utah — Alta Ski Area announced that it’s lifts will begin spinning on Saturday, Nov. 25.  The resort’s Wildcat and Collins lifts will start up at 9:15 a.m. However, there will be no access to Albion Basin. 

Due to current conditions, Alta Ski Area said it recommends that only expert-level skiers visit on Saturday. 

Upgraded avalanche mitigation system

A new feature this year at Alta includes an upgraded avalanche mitigation system. That means they’ll no longer use artillery for that purpose. 

“After decades of artillery use for avalanche mitigation purposes at Alta Ski Area, Alta Ski Patrol fired the 105-mm Howitzer for the final time in April 2023,” officials said in the press release. 

Instead, the ski area has been transitioning to modern avalanche control technology. Over the summer they’ve added five Wyssen towers to the resort. 

Wyssen towers are remote avalanche control systems. RACS systems can be enabled remotely. They aid in avalanche mitigation without putting ski or highway patrol personnel in harm’s way, according to Ski Area Management Magazine. 

Other improvements

In addition to the upgraded avalanche mitigation systems, Alta said it smoothed out erosion near the Supreme lift. Skiers can expect an “enhanced skiing experience on Sleepy Hollow,” as a result. 

Albion lift also received an upgrade during the off-season. Following 60 years in service, the lift was removed and replaced, according to Alta Ski Area’s website.

And Alta’s Alf Engen Ski School has expanded its lesson offerings this season. 

Alta invited beginner and first-time skiers to “join the adult beginner and novice class.  Lessons [will be] offered daily from 1:30-4 p.m. Have fun while acquiring the skills to navigate green slopes.” 

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Alta Ski Area to open November 25, but recommends skiing for “experts only”