The evolution of geotechnical monitoring technology for assessing slope stability issues in real time has progressed rapidly in the last few decades. The technology has advanced the safety of open pit operations and has the potential to change the planning parameters, particularly in activities adjacent to public infrastructure, based on the additional confidence that operators gain from instantaneous access to information. This paper summarizes the experience of a coal mine operating in the rugged topography of the Alberta foothills, excavating extremely structurally complex coal deposits within thrust and fold belt geology. Case studies that involved open pit footwall failures are presented.