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North Pole Gate



0.5 mile 0.7 kilometer point to point


Ascent: 292' 89 m
Descent: -36' -11 m
High: 12,699' 3,871 m
Low: 12,432' 3,789 m


Avg Slope: 14% (8°)
Max Slope: 32% (18°)
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Trail shared by Rachel Vecchitto

Avalanche risk for Jul 10, 2019: Unknown

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Full forecast for CAIC: Vail Summit Zone — Brought to you by CO Avalanche Information Center

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Access to the lines on the south side of the East Wall, including the Notches and the North Pole.

Rachel Vecchitto
Type: In Bounds (completely inside ski area boundary)


This hike takes you up the ridge behind the East Wall, over the peak of Little Lenawee, and across the ridge on the south side of the East Wall. The views are gorgeous and the hike isn't hard, but the altitude can make it feel tough. In return, you get access to some of the best steeps in Summit County.

Ski over to this gate by turning left off the Lenawee chair or skiing straight ahead off the Zuma chair. Walk up the obvious staircase to the first viewpoint, then hang a left and continue up the ridge to the top of Little Lenawee. The bootpack is very obvious the whole way. Once you're at the top, take a few minutes to enjoy the gorgeous views over Peru Creek, with Keystone and Breckenridge in the distance.

At this point you turn right and venture as far across the ridge as you'd like. If you're on skis, it's usually worth it to put them on here for the first downhill section across the ridge. As you cross the ridge, you'll first come to the entrance to First Notch, followed shortly by the entrance to Second Notch. Roughly where you start working your way uphill again you'll hit the entrance to Narrow North Pole. You'll have to take your skis off if you want to hike the entire distance across the ridge.

Once you go as far as you can, all the way to ski patrol sled, you're at the entrance to North Pole.

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Mar 30, 2019
Quentin Ribierre

Trail Ratings

  3.0 from 1 vote


  3.0 from 1 vote
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in Colorado


9 Views Last Month
842 Since May 5, 2016



Enjoy this stellar view about 1/3 of the way down First Notch, with the narrowest section straight ahead.
Feb 7, 2017 near Keystone, CO
Looking down into the entrance to North Pole.
May 11, 2016 near Keystone, CO
Looking back across the ridge from near the North Pole entrance, with two skiers standing at the Narrow North Pole entrance and Little Lenawee Peak in the distance.
May 11, 2016 near Keystone, CO
North Pole hiking gate, showing the first section of the bootpack.
May 5, 2016 near Keystone, CO
Looking up the second segment of the hike towards Little Lenawee Peak.
May 11, 2016 near Keystone, CO


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