Weekend Getaway – Alta

My good friend and former roommate Seth Masarik, has this wanderlust persona that seems to keep him perpetually on the go. After two months traveling with his girlfriend throughout Europe he made a brief stay in Boise and then ventured south to catch the remainder of cold smoke that the little cottonwood canyon consistently boasts about.

With only a few more weeks left before Alta’s forest service permit forces them to close their doors I chose this past weekend to check out Seth’s new diggs before it was too late.

My first stop in Salt Lake had me visiting David, a friend from high school. We chatted about his winter life down in Valley over of delicious spaghetti meal that he made. With the light quickly fading, I decided to make my move up to see Seth.

I made it to Seth’s new home at the Alta Lodge by 9pm on Friday, just in time to catch a brief tour of the hotel and to unwind at the Sitzmark. The Sitzmark is the type of bar that you want to have in your house. All of your friends, good music, decent micro brew selection and plenty of room to hang. The majority of the lodge guests enjoy this cozy hang out from roughly 5-8 leaving it open to the employees to enjoy until 10:30. The closing hour makes it perfect for getting to bed early enough to catch that 9:15 am first chair. I highly recommend checking this place out if you’re looking for some apres ski ambiance or for a nice quaint place to stay.

After a relaxing evening meeting the crew and enjoying a red tail ale we were ready for bed. The employees at the Alta Lodge are provided with dorm room like quarters for a minimal monthly fee. Seth’s room was a close quartered room with a bunk bed, sink basin and clothing dresser. It was a tight squeeze but managed to crash quickly on the floor.

The chiming of Seth’s alarm woke us early enough to grab a bite to eat before journeying out to schralp the gnar at Snowbird. We quickly jetted over to the tram doc to meet up with another good buddy of mine, Tim Nelson. After finding him, we were ready to take on the April conditions. The warm weather throughout the weekend coupled with the fresh snow overnight left conditions on the south facing slopes tricky to navigate. Fortunately, the north slopes of Baldy and the Bookends provided us with much more forgiving snow pack selections. Tim helped to remind me of the favorite spots that I had briefly become familiar with during my year of school at the University of Utah and rallied fast enough to keep our legs burning after each run. On one of our tram rides I spotted a longtime friend of mine, Nick Greener. (Nick was a pseudo celebrity at Snowbird after his win at the big mountain comp back in 2006) The three of us, Nick and our crew were able to make a couple runs together over on Baldy. I had forgotten how good Nick had become. When our legs couldn’t withstand anymore we headed back Lodge to soak in the hot tub and enjoy an ice cold Gretchen’s Gold lager. The hot tub had lulled us into a near coma state so we opted to transition slowly by watching the Memphis game. When the blowout had subsided, we made our way to the kitchen. Employees are treated to a nice dinner every evening before the big rush begins. Our plates were filled with steak, salmon, ravioli, mashed potatoes and salad. Not too shabby if you ask me.

The next move had us scoping out the lovely twilight view from the Lodge down canyon. I could definitely get used to that image every night (well, that scene comes and goes with the ebb and flow of the glorious canyon storms.)

View down to Salt Lake with Superior on the right

When our fingers could bear no more, we headed back to Seth’s room to watch a fixie movie called Mash. I can watch that movie over and over again without getting bored. Those dudes are so damn talented. Definitely check out the full thing or get a quick taste by watching the trailer. The movie came to an end and both of us were more than ready for bed.

Seth was up early to work breakfast. I slept an another hour before getting my ski gear on and heading out to make some turns at Alta. The inch overnight wasn’t quite enough to make the off trail skiing enjoyable so after three runs in various places I made my way back. I met Seth back at his room and enjoyed some leftovers from breakfast that he had brought back for me. Fully fueled, I was ready to jet down to Salt Lake to see a few other friends before departing home. Seth and I said our goodbyes and I was on my way.

My Salt Lake stop placed me on a porch drinking coffee with my friend Trevor whom I had met while I was living down in school. We exchanged stories of the past and detailed what potential future plans had in store for us. It was good to catch up. When the conversation came to a close we hopped on our bikes and went to check out this rad cat that Trevor had been eyeing at the local pet shop. After filling out his adoption papers we jetted across the street for some burritos at Barbacoa Grill. Once our bellies were filled with delicious Barbacoa pork burritos we headed down to a parking lot with a great paved side hill perfect for skids down. The better part of an hour was spent trying the crazy tricks that were thrown down in Mash. I definitely have a long way to go. When the progression slowed, I decided to call it a day and headed back to car.

The drive back put me in Boise in just under four and half hours. I thought about how much I missed skiing real mountains the majority of the drive back. I will always be drawn to Salt Lake for its skiing and the friends that I have there but for now I am still quite content on living in Boise. I will look forward to my next quick jaunt down to Salt Lake. Thanks to everyone who made my stay so rad.

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~ by skier2435 on April 7, 2008.

One Response to “Weekend Getaway – Alta”

  1. Nice photo!!

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