Goodbye Alta, Hello Powder Magazine
Words by Alta athlete, Drew Petersen.
It was a no-brainer. For my last day before moving away from the mountains I wanted to go skiing. Sure, it was the last weekend in May, but the month on the calendar carries little weight in my decision-making process. It was also an easy decision on what to ski: Main Chute at Alta.
We skinned up in T-shirts, but it was still too warm. I was sweating like a stuffed pig at a Hawaiian Luau. Nearly halfway up I paused for a breath and looked around. There was not a hint of snow on the other side of the canyon. At that moment, another drop of perspiration ran down my brow, and I thought, ‘Wow, maybe it is summer.’
We topped out and took in the view down the valley. Little Cottonwood was green, lush, and vibrant. The vegetation of the lower elevations looked alive and ready for the welcome sight of summer sun. But still, we were on top of Baldy, skis in tow, and ready to descend the remaining snow from an interesting winter. The conditions in Main Chute were admittedly warm and heavy, as is to be expected this time of year. It skied well though, allowing for fast speeds and fun turns.
I smiled my way down the mountain, constantly being reminded of the good memories from the winter that has come to a close. The snow grew warmer the lower we dropped, until finally we arrived at the Collins base area. I removed my boots for the last time this season and took a seat on the tailgate of my truck. I was disappointed to admit that my ski season had finally ended, but I was elated to have skied one last lap in such an amazing place.
The following day, I ironically drove across the desert of Nevada. The thermometer read 109 degrees Fahrenheit, but my mind continuously reminisced on the previous day’s turns. Furthermore, I daydreamed of the 2015-2016 winter to come, especially at Alta. I fantasized about my favorite powder stashes off Wildcat, the countless laps I would take through the steeps of Eagle’s Nest, and of course the next time I would find myself dropping into Main Chute.
I have moved away from the Wasatch for now, to Southern California, but just for the summer. It seems wild, but I moved here to continue chasing my love and passion for the sport of skiing. I will be working as the Editorial Intern at Powder Magazine. I may be 750 miles away from Alta, but these are just the people and just the environment that understands why I didn’t hesitate when I chose to ski Main Chute this past weekend.
See you back at Alta next winter, skiers.