The suit filed against Alta and the Forest Service is frivolous and misguided ("Suit claims Alta’s ban on snowboards violates rights," Tribune, Jan. 15).
Everyone is welcome to buy a ticket at Alta. The fact that you are required to ski to ride the lifts, rather than snowboard, snowmobile, snowshoe or fatbike does not discriminate against people but only choices of recreation. Snowboarders are welcome if they choose to ski there as many snowboarders do and experience how unique and friendly it is.
The joke is Alta stands for A-Lotta-Traversing-Always. The geography and traversing make it unlike any other ski area. Skiing the best of Alta requires serious work (side stepping, skating, poling) to hold and gain elevation in a way that snowboarders can’t without walking.
Alta requires skiers keep their skis on for traverses. This is primarily for safety; you are a lot more secure with a metal edge than a plastic boot on ice and snow with 1,000 feet to slide below. Also, walking on packed traverses breaks up the snow, speeding wind and sun exposure of bare ground making the traverses impassable, like closing a bridge.
Thanks to Alta Patrol for keeping the High T "bridge" open in a low snow year!
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