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Ray of Light Couloir

Extremely Difficult
  5.0 ( 1 ) Favorite

Trail

0.4 mile 0.7 kilometer point to point
Ski Line
Extremely Difficult

Elevation

Ascent: 0' 0 m
Descent: -1,178' -359 m
High: 12,692' 3,868 m
Low: 11,514' 3,510 m

Grade

Avg Slope: 53% (28°)
Max Slope: 103% (46°)
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Trail shared by J. Bella

A gnarly exposed line through cliffs.

J. Bella
Type: Backcountry or Sidecountry
This is in a Wilderness, so no mechanized equipment or drones are allowed.

Need to Know

This is not recommended when hardpack conditions exist—falls may be deadly and self arrest can be impossible in certain parts of this line.

Description

This line offers fear-inducing exposure suitable for expert alpinists who crave the sense of living on the edge, literally. After a big snow year, this is rideable from the top and requires a harrowing off-camber traverse first above a chute funneling onto cliffs, then above a cliff to a narrow choke a couple board-widths wide.

Most of the time, it is recommended to climb the bottom half of the line and descend from there. From either the top or bottom, and within the couloir, most of the line is not visible. It makes a couple turns as it winds through the gnarly volcanic cliffs, then opens onto an apron amidst towering rock faces.

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Trail Ratings

  5.0 from 1 vote

#139

Overall
  5.0 from 1 vote
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Featured Ski Line Rankings

#7

in New Mexico

#139

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Extremely Difficult

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Photos

No fall zone ~ the harrowing traverse in the middle of the Ray of Light Couloir
Feb 10, 2018 near Taos Sk…, NM
Crowl's Couloir on West Simpson's northwest face
Feb 10, 2018 near Taos Sk…, NM

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