Tag Archives: public lands

Plaintiffs Challenge Alta’s Snowboarding Ban as Unconstitutional

January 15, 2014 – Wasatch Equality, a Utah nonprofit, together with four snowboarders have filed a lawsuit against Alta Ski Area and the U.S. Forest Service today, in an attempt to overturn the anti-snowboarder policy and snowboarding ban that are currently enforced by the resort. The plaintiffs claim that the prohibition violates the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The lawsuit states that Alta treats snowboarders as unequal by not granting them access to the public lands on which the resort operates.

Alta is one of only three remaining U.S. winter resorts that ban snowboarders from their slopes, the other two being Utah’s Deer Valley and Vermont’s Mad River Glen. Unlike the other two, however, Alta runs under a Forest Service Permit, which states that the public lands “shall remain open to the public for all lawful purposes.”

“Discrimination without any rational basis perpetuates inequality by creating, fostering, and encouraging skier-versus-snowboarder attitudes that are hostile and divisive in a world where skiers and snowboarders, as a general matter, share the mountains, including those on all other public land, in harmony and without issue,” states the complaint filed in the U.S. District Court.

You can read the full text of the complaint here.