Dead Elk Couloir Approach
ElevationAscent: 470' 143 m
Descent: 0' 0 m
High: 11,955' 3,644 m
Low: 11,485' 3,501 m
GradeAvg Slope: 19% (11°)
Max Slope: 33% (18°)
Popular ski lines nearby
Dead Elk Couloir
0.5 mi 0.8 km • -1,726 ft Descent • -526.18 m Descent
Otis Redding Couloir
0.3 mi 0.4 km • -466 ft Descent • -142.11 m Descent
0.7 mi 1.1 km • -712 ft Descent • -216.97 m Descent
Lower T-Bar (a.k.a. Lift Line)
0.5 mi 0.9 km • -739 ft Descent • -225.28 m Descent
Hidden Valley "Ptarmigan"
0.2 mi 0.3 km • -128 ft Descent • -38.9 m Descent
North Face of Longs Peak
0.3 mi 0.4 km • -726 ft Descent • -221.31 m Descent
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“Route to the top of Dead Elk Couloir from Bear Lake.”— Jacob Winey
In the winter, you can walk straight out of the bear lake parking lot towards flattop without even hiking to the lake. Once you pass the top of Flattop East face, keep going until the incline begins to mellow out. The top of Flattop is often wind-scoured, so be prepared to boot pack.
The two entrances to Dragontail Couloir come up quickly on the left side and can be recognized by one, mellower line entering westward into the couloir and another past that which enters facing east and is much steeper. Another couple hundred yards along the ridge will bring you around a small hill of scree and to the entrance of Dead Elk. The top part of the couloir may be scoured a little bit and there will be a noticeable choke to the couloir as you look down it.
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Land Manager: National Park Service - Rocky Mountain National Park