OverviewThere are 3 distinct ribs with NE aspects angling down from the summit ridge to the north. I snowboarded the middle one, because it was easiest to get to, and avoids lots of avalanche danger. I would like to call this Lambornghini Rib, and the skiing fits the name. This NE bowl provides 2500 to 3000 ft. of continuous skiing. Angles near the ridge are at the 45 degree range, and mellow out quickly and sustain at ~35 degrees for 1400 ft.
A very aesthetic descent would be the NW Gully, running 3600 ft. before any bushwhacking.
Getting ThereFrom Paonia take 2nd street East to 0.05 DR for about a mile to 42.80 RD (Dry Gulch RD). Take this for about a 1.5 mi then park when you see the Forest Road to Lone Cabin Reservoir on left, RD 798. There will be a gate prohibiting motorized access here.
Route DescriptionFollow Forest Road 798 untill your elevation is 7180 ft., then veer off to the SE following the clearings on the USGS map to Sams Divide. Gain the broad ridge S of Sams Divide and follow it S to a point near 8000 ft when you cross the creekbed to the west(bushwhack). Scan the horizon for the next clearing and go for it. Once in the large clearing below the N Face angle up and to the SW shooting for a bench at about 8800 ft. below the NW gully. Follow the gully up if conditions allow, or hop on one of the distinct ridges on either side. I climbed the ridge on the W side of the gully and encountered mostly class 2 with some 3 and one short section of class 4 climbing. Once on the summit ridge, pick your descent.
If the snowpack is stable, the most aesthetic line around is the NW gully. This provides 3600 ft. of continuous skiing without bushwhacking.
The NE ribs are a good bet for a questionable snowpack. For a bonus, once at the small flat at 8850 ft. ski the left gully for 500 ft. Then skin back up and over to the W to meet up with the big clearing under the N face again.
Don't get caught bushwhacking more than you have to. Use a good map and travel in the clearings.