Analysing terrain data
The exposure grade does not take into account objective hazards (stone fall, seracs, etc) but only the consequences of the skier falling.
Low Exposure (E1): Exposure is limited to that of the slope itself. Getting hurt is still likely if the slope is steep and/or the snow is hard.
Medium Exposure (E2): As well as the slope itself, there are some obstacles (such as rock outcrops) which could aggravate injury.
High Exposure (E3): In case of a fall, death is highly likely.
Extreme Exposure (E4): In case of a fall, the skier faces certain death.
The Remarkables plays host to some fantastic chutes that are found nestled on the ridge on the southern side of the Shadow Basin Chairlift, looking out directly towards the north face of Double Cone.
Frequently used as the location for the Freeride World Tour, this area gives some of the best freeride terrain in the area. Given the fact that they are only a short hike from the top of Shadow Basin and that they are within the resort boundaries (when patrol have opened them), this means that the Alta Chutes see a lot of traffic from skiers of varying ability levels.
Be aware that there are some people skiing in resort and have little consideration for avalanche safety or safe travel practices, and don’t be surprised if someone knocks a load of sluff down on top of you within these chutes! From the top of the Shadow Basin Chairlift, take your skis/board off and bootpack up towards the ridgeline that is ahead of you to your south east, you should pass a resort boundary gate and there should already be a track set from patrol securing the chutes each morning.
Elevator, Escalator and Alta Chutes are all accessible from this ridgeline. Elevator is the most classic and frequently skied of the line of chutes on this due to the awesome rocky walls either side of you creating a real ‘couloir’ feeling for almost the entire length down to Lake Alta. With it being the most popular of the chutes, you’ll probably find that Elevator has been tracked, even moguled by mid-afternoon onwards if the patrol team have managed to get it open from first lifts onwards.
The couloir is wide enough to be able to pick your own unique line down in an effort to find fresh snow however. Once out of the chutes, a simple westerly traverse (snowboarders stay high) is needed to be made before you reach Lake Alta to make your way back to the pistes and reach the lifts for another lap of these awesome chutes!