Alta is one of the last great shrines to serious skiing in America. It's routinely acknowledged as having the best snow on earth (rated No. 1 in the country), and blessed with challenging runs worthy of such natural bounty.
Following an unusually dry January for most western ski areas, Utah resorts finally returned to the deep-powder conditions skiers and snowboards have come to expect from the area's legendary powder factories.
Alta's unassailable charms are snow (abundant and as dry as the perfect martini), terrain (wide-open flanks punctuated with butt-clenching steeps) and value ($40 a day), categories it is accustomed to dominating in the annual rankings.
Our annual Reader Resort Survey, now in its 13th season, may be the sport's greatest oxymoron. That's because these Top 60 resort rankings are unequivocally defensible¿yet utterly indefensible. Let me explain. n Year in and year out, we are awed by the insights and expertise of the thousands of geographically dispersed SKI subscribers who enthusiastically fill out our four-page survey. These people ski an average of 22 days a season, and they know their stuff.