Sayres Benchmark is a bicentennial thirteener, standing high as the 129th highest peak in Colorado. Sayres' North Couloirs are the aesthetically pleasing couloirs many notice from the summit of La Plata Peak
. There are many options to choose from on the north face, but only the easiest and most difficult routes are described.
Sayres Benchmark's North Couloirs
Drive 14.5 miles west on CO 82 from the US 24-CO 82 intersection or 9.2 miles east on CO 82 from Independence Pass to the well-signed La Plata Trailhead.
Folow the La Plata Gulch trail until it starts climbing out of La Plata Gulch and up La Plata Peak and continue up La Plata Gulch. Sayres Benchmark's striking north face will soon dominate your view. Climb and/or descend either couloir. The looker's right, called Grand Central Couloir, is the easiest and is rated as a D7 on the D Scale
with a maximum slope angle approaching 40 degrees. The looker's left, called X Rated, is the most difficult and is rated as a D13 on the D Scale
with a maximum slope angle of 48 degrees.
Sayres Benchmark's North Couloirs. Click to enlarge.
Ice axe and crampons if uncomfortable on frozen snow.
External LinksAndy Dimmen's Trip Report
April 19, 2007 Trip Report
June 10, 2006 Trip Report + History
June 19, 2005 Trip Report