Baldy Chutes - Alta

RATING: S4 ***
PITCH: 38–40°
ELEVATIONS: 8,500’ – 11,068’
 photo: Fremont Shields

Main Baldy is one of the most prominent and classic chutes in the Wasatch. When they are officially open, the Baldy Chutes have a convoluted approach, are crowded and bumped out, but generally worth skiing. For many reasons but most notably public safety, it’s not too surprising that they are rarely open. The best way to ski these are pre- and post-season when Alta is closed and it’s open chuting season. With generally leeward exposure to the wind, deep side walls and consistent talus bed, Main Baldy Chute is a virtual snow trap that fills in quickly and can be skied rock-free even when there isn’t any snow in the parking lot. If Alta isn’t open, the safest way to get there is to follow the trails up to the top of the Wildcat lift, then continue up the ridge, which can be windblown and treacherous. The shorter, faster and more dangerous approach is to trek to Ballroom, then climb directly up. Alta usually opens it for a few days at a time during the season and it can be especially sporty trying to ski it with a hoards of people in it.
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