Hopeful Couloir

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Hopeful Couloir

Submitted By: mtnfiend on August 15, 2012

Administrator: mtnfiend

Views: 1304 page views

Starting Elevation: 10,000 (SG) and 9400 (WG)
Elevation Gain: 4000 (SG) and 4500 (WG)
Total Distance: 8ish miles
Avalanche Resources: http://avalanche.state.co.us/index.php
Snowmobile Access: Yes
Approach Difficulty: Moderate

Featured Descent

Colorado » Ten Mile Range

East Ridge and Bowls

There are two major east facing bowls to descend along the north side of the ridge.  They are pretty obvious to find.  One drops from very near the summit down to 13,100'.  The second begins just past the flat section of the ridge and drops to treeline at 11,600.  You can avoid the lower bowl if desired and ski right down the ridge crest, but the bowl has better skiing.  Just make sure you don't drop too low at the bottom, or you'll have to climb back to the trail.

From treeline, follow the trail back to your car.  Do not ski to the south directly down the fall line to Blue Lakes Road, though this is tempting... you will be trespassing on private property.

The East Bowls are moderate in difficulty - about D3-D4.  For more info on the D-system for rating ski descents, see here: http://www.wildsnow.com/articles/ratings/ski-board-d-rating-system.html.  They are steep enough to slide, but are one of the safer spring ski descents.  This route is not recommended in winter because it will most likely be wind scoured most of the time.



This asthetic, east facing couloir features an exciting entrance and a sustained steep pitch for about 1500+ feet.

How to Get There

From either Sheep Gulch TH or Willis Gulch TH one way to approach this peak is to follow the well defined trail to hope pass (saddle between Mt. Hope and Quail Mountain).  Then scramble up the ridge to the summit.  You can also climb the line directly.  A third option is to follow the trail from Sheep Gulch, but peel off before reacing hope pass and climb the SE facing flank of the mountain.

Access Issues

No access issues I can think of.

Approach Description

The trail is easy to follow if snow free.  When I climbed it, I climbed to the summit in trail runners with the skis and boots on my back.

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