Categorized under About Alta
Who’s the best at forecasting the weather for Alta? If you’ve been paying any attention over the last couple of ski seasons the local weather forecasters have taken a beating. And what I mean by taking a beating is they seem to be having a more difficult time than ever predicting storms here at Alta, the Cottonwood Canyons, and the Wasatch Front in general. I can’t recall how many times a promising snow storm fizzled out leaving a lot of skiers and boarders frustrated looking for someone to blame.
But of course, do we really blame the weatherman? Yes… yes we do. I mean, we did our part by making numerous sacrifices to the snow gods throughout the year. We just want you to hold your end of the bargain with all this swirly weather windy stuff. It’s not scientific for us as we prefer to keep it at a shamanistic level. There’s nothing scientific about “lake effect” at all, don’t you know.
So who are our local Alta snow forecasters? My new favorite is Evan over at Wasatch Snow Forecast. His forecasts are very detailed and always include interesting information, and most importantly, he knows the intricacies of the Cottonwood Canyons and his weather forecasts have been quite accurate. So to Evan… wherever you are… thank you and keep up the good work! Check it out, wasatchsnowforecast.com.
Storm skiing here at Alta is something very special. The solitude and oneness one feels with the mountain is incredible. The skier’s powder caked grins in the lift lanes are huge. The snow just keeps piling up run after run after run. Free refills!.. they say. There’s nothing to hold you back, it’s just you, the mountain, and the liftie with a mustache. By the way. Did you know that an Alta liftie’s mustache not only looks cool but will also help float the liftie’s head above the snow in an avalanche? Yep.
So yeah, that first step outside into the storm can be really tough. There is obviously some well rooted ancestral gene involved in the decision process here. Something probably like… cave warm, snow cold, stay in cave! And let’s admit it, lounging next to the fire in the cozy lodge… or cave, sippin’ hot cocoa and watching the snow pile up outside is very appealing and satisfying as well. In fact, it’s just too appealing for most. But if you can manage to escape the gravity-like pull of the ancestral gene, then you’re in for a treat.
A brief break in the storm allows the sun to peak through – Wildcat Ridge – Alta, UT
The ride up the lift during an all-out Alta snow storm is quite religious. The snow seems to pile up on you providing a warm insulating layer letting you forget about the cold. The elation of the insane powder run you just had keeps going through your mind. You make mental notes, your next run is going to be even better. (more…)
Following up a day of skiing Alta with a few beers and friends is always fun. Skiing and beer go together like bacon and eggs. The bond is unbreakable… Skiing and beer sittin’ in a tree… K I S S I N G. Yeah, it’s that serious (Did you use your school girl voice while reading that last little bit?… ok good). Well, as anyone who has experienced Alta knows, the good times have been happening in these parts for quite some time now. So which came first, beer or skiing?
It’s hard to say when the first beer was swilled down here at the top of Little Cottonwood Canyon. But if you know anything about the history of Alta, you’ll know it was once a thriving silver mining town. It all started back in the mid 1800′s with the discovery of silver in the area. It didn’t take long for the word to spread and soon a town with a population of well over 1000 sprung up. It is said that at one time there were well over 20 saloons lining Alta’s main street. Word is the hippest joints of the time were called the (more…)
Alta is a quaint resort town which is surrounded by beautiful scenery and world quality skiing conditions. This is a perfect vacation spot for lovers of the outdoors with wild life spotting, hiking, mountain biking and many more activities on offer. Our friendly Alta Peruvian Lodge staff can help you discover some excellent locations that only the locals know about and also help you find transport, but in the meantime here are five stunning reasons to visit Alta. (more…)
There are many great things to see in and around Alta, Utah and our Alta resort but one of the most amazing to visit, especially if you love the outdoors, is the Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest, which covers most of Utah and parts of both Idaho and Wyoming. The forest is 2.1 million acres and is filled with stunning lakes, trees and views which will appeal to every outdoor enthusiast.
The forests name is derived from several different historic locations:
Uinta – The native word for “Pine Forest” or “Pine Tree”
Wasatch – An Ute Indian word meaning “low place in high mountains”
Cache – A French word referring to caves where trappers used to hide their furs
What to see near our Alta Resort: Highlights of the Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Park
There are several beautiful recreation areas and wilderness areas within the parks grounds. While all of them are beautiful, we recommend visiting the Twin Peaks Wilderness Area, which can be found just to the East of Salt Lake City. Originally carved by glaciation and currently remodeled by erosion, this area consists of narrow canyons and high peaks (including Twin Peaks, Superior Peak, and Dromedary Peak) that combine to form a rugged and spectacular display. Much of the higher terrain is classified as alpine and characterized by large cirque basins and exposed rocky ridges.
If you’re just looking for a stunning scenic drive, State Route 190 follows Big Cottonwood Creek along the northern boundary and separates this Wilderness from Mount Olympus Wilderness to the north. State Route 210 follows Little Cottonwood Creek along the southern boundary and stands between Twin Peaks and Lone Peak Wilderness to the south. The canyons of both these creeks are highly scenic, and you’ll find trail heads along both routes.
What to do in Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Park?
The park is known for its great hiking trails (although many are considered to be quite strenuous) and beautiful cycling routes as well as:
- Fishing in the lakes
- Picnic areas for day outings
- Nature viewing
And much more!
If you’re looking for a great place to bring the family during your next trip to Utah, our Alta Resort, the Alta Peruvian Lodge, definitely recommends stopping by this stunning park. Whether you’re interested in viewing the scenery, getting some exercise or looking into doing some hunting, fishing or horseback riding excursions, the park and the surrounding areas have everything that you’re looking for. For more information on the park, visit the Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Park website.
After a long day of skiing on the famous Alta Mountains, there is nothing better than a nice warm drink or a satisfying large meal to recuperate for the next day. Whether you are going out with friends or family, there are a variety of restaurants, bars and cafes which are perfect for a fun night out before heading back to the hotel.
Enjoy dining while on your Alta vacation
Alta Java – For a hot drink and a tasty snack, look no further than Alta Java. They have one of the best coffee selections in the area and also have some tasty cookies or biscotti.
The Albion Grill – This brilliant grill has been in business for 21 years and for a very good reason, they make delectable homemade food. Their soups, wraps and even cookies are all made from mouth-watering custom recipes.
Baldy Brews – If you’ve worked up a thirst after a day of skiing, Baldy Brews is the place for you. Their selection of Local Uinta micro brews and domestic beer is a great way to relax on the mountain.
Alf’s Restaurant: This restaurant is conveniently located at the base of the Sugarloaf lifts in one of the most scenic dining spots. They serve a range of food such as charbroiled hamburgers, baked treats, fajitas and also claim to have the best fries in the area!
Watson Shelter: Near the Collin’s Lift Angle Station is the Watson Shelter Cafeteria. The famed 100-percent grass-fed Utah beef hamburger is a must try for any hungry visitor.
Shallow Shaft: This intimate dining experience has breath-taking views of the Wasatch Mountains and an eclectic menu with local and organic ingredients. They have won several awards and are now in their 34th season for creative meals such as the Wild Salmon Au Poivre and Niman Ranch Lamb T-Bones.
Why not enjoy your Alta vacation at the Alta Peruvian Lodge?
The Alta Peruvian Lodge has been the preferred destination of holiday makers since 1948 and offers a combination of rustic charm and stylish modern accommodation. We are located directly underneath the mountain with ski-lifts right by our front door. For easy access to some of America’s best skiing conditions and great restaurants, come stay in luxury at the Alta Peruvian Lodge.
Alta isn’t just an excellent skiing, wedding and vacation destination with an annual snowfall of over 500 inches. It also has an interesting history and played an integral part in the creation of the modern day ski resort model. Although the area is now a favoured celebrity hangout and the Park City area annually hosts the famous Sundance Movie Festival, Alta began as a modest mining town and was almost a ghost town at one point.
The history of Utah’s famous Alta Resort Town
Alta began as a mining settlement in the 1880s with the first verified silver claim staked in 1865. Its name is a Spanish word meaning “upper or higher” possibly due to its mountain location. Central City was the name of the first settlement in the area, it only had a few small houses and businesses with a population under 200.
The town peaked in 1872 with 3000 residents, but declining silver values, land issues and inaccessible ore meant the population fell back down to 300 by 1880. Despite several discoveries by the Jacobsen Brothers in the Columbus Mine and the production of silver ore peaking, Alta became a ghost town with only six registered voters in the early 1930s.
Luckily, the mayor of Alta gave acres of land to the U.S Forest Service to develop a ski area in 1937. Norwegian skiing legend Alf Engen was hired to help develop the area, and Alta opened its first ski lift a year later. Its first ski lift was made a year later from pieces of an old aerial mining tram and was home to the second chairlift in American history.
They purchased 86,000 ski lifts in the second season and the first international competition was held in 1940. During World War II, paratroopers from the 10th Mountain Regiment trained on the slopes.
The resort was enlarged again in 1960 because of the growing popularity of skiing and tourists were attracted to Alta’s natural beauty. This unique town has continued to develop over the decades and still holds its place as one of the world’s best skiing destinations.
Interested in an Alta resort vacation? Come visit the Alta Peruvian Lodge
If you want to discover Alta’s interesting mining past and witness its beauty personally, why not come stay at the Alta Peruvian lodge. The classic hotel was built in 1948 and has a delightful mix of rustic charm and modern sophistication. It is perfectly situated right next to the mountain and within just a few minutes of the Alta’s visitor attractions. For more information contact the friendly Alta Peruvian Lodge staff.