The Grizzly Couloir is a classic steep snow couloir that goes almost directly to the summit of 13,988' Grizzly Peak, the highest 13er in Colorado. It makes an excellent snow climb for the mountaineer, and one hell of a ski descent.
From the Grizzly trailhead at 10,560', walk 3.5 miles up the easy trail to Grizzly Lake at 12,400'. It would impossible to get lost, and most of the hiking is fairly flat. Hike around the lake, and up talus to the big snow couloir that comes down to the right from the summit.
Depending on conditions, the snow climbing will start at 12,600' or a little higher. The angle steepens as you climb, and near the top it is between 45 and 50 degrees(measured with a slope meter). The couloir tops out at 13,800' and the summit is only a few minutes scramble away.
If you are not skiiing, either descend the west slopes back to the road or very carefully glissade and downclimb the couloir.
If skiing, the couloir is fairly wide and has a long, safe runout. There is some rockfall from the cliffs on either side, so watch for rocks. You can go a very long way on this if you fall, but the angle lessens considerably at the bottom.
There are quite a few other chutes on this side of the mountain, some of which had tracks in them.
Crampons, ice ax, skis
The couloir we skied comes right off the summit an...
From: Los Alamos, NM
Oct 11, 2008
rating: Steep Snow
Trip report of our climb and ski descent from June 21, 2008.