Dead Dog Couloir

Page Type Page Type: Route
Location Lat/Lon: 39.64280°N / 105.8208°W
Additional Information Route Type: Mountaineering
Additional Information Time Required: Half a day
Additional Information Difficulty: Med. Snow
Sign the Climber's Log


Magnificent Torreys Peak.
On Approach

The Dead Dog Couloir is a very popular snow climb on the Front Range. It is also a great expert ski descent. The approximately 50° slopes with a convenient finish near the summit guarantee there will be several groups attempting this route when it is in especially on the weekends.

Once on I-70 go to the Bakerville exit #221 (East of the divide) and proceed south on forest service road 189. Look for the brown forest service sign pointing the way to Grays Peak. Depending on road conditions, the clearance of your vehicle and the number of cars in the Stevens Gulch trailhead parking lot, drive about 2 miles to the trailhead. The road can be impacted from avalanche slides so access to the trailhead may be uncertain; it is not maintained during the winter so your vehicle can get stuck.

From the Stevens Gulch TH (11,150ft) take the trail that heads towards Grays. Once in the upper valley, at near the base of Grays and Torries, cut over to the base of the obvious couloir that cuts the peak in half. It is 1.5 to 2 hours, at approx 12,000 feet, from the trailhead. Keep in mind that the trail passes the south end of Kelso which can expose you to avalanche danger depending on conditions.


Climbers often camp near the base of the route to skip the alpine start/drive from Denver. Note the CMC often camps here also as part of their training outings so the route could get crowded on the weekends.


Route Description

 Some of the routes on...
Dead Dog Route
Late Spring Conditions

Dead Dog is the obvious line that runs up the middle of Torreys as seen in the picture on the right. The steepest sections are approximately 45 degrees toward the top but very manageable.

Exit the couloir to the right and join the ridge to the summit. This ridge is the finish of the Kelso route.

Unless you are skiing the safest way off is to descend from Grays.

Essential Gear

CharlesD and brenta near the...
Equipment Required

Ice axe, crampons and helmet are needed to safely attempt this route. Avalanche gear might be needed depending on the time of season.

Watch out for falling rock and skiers depending on the weather and time of day.





Parents refers to a larger category under which an object falls. For example, theAconcagua mountain page has the 'Aconcagua Group' and the 'Seven Summits' asparents and is a parent itself to many routes, photos, and Trip Reports.