Northeast Couloir

Page Type Page Type: Route
Location Lat/Lon: 33.37400°N / 105.808°W
Additional Information Route Type: Hike/Scramble
Additional Information Time Required: Half a day
Additional Information Difficulty: Class 2
Sign the Climber's Log


Follow the approach description on the main page.

Route Description

This route should be used if you are looking to make a faster ascent than would be possible on the trail. Because you'll be cutting across the ski mountain, it won't be as scenic of a hike, or even not possible in the winter months. From the parking lot at the trailhead, walk down the road toward the base of the ski mountain. From here, there are 2 routes. You may go up the steepest run that is in front of you, Capitan, for a direct route, or you may continue down the parking lot untill you reach Elk Lodge and travel out of the ski area for a route-finding direction. The Capitan route, though steeper, will be the quicker of the 2 routes. After reaching the top of the Captian ski run, follow the Game Trail (a blue) untill it reaches the clearing at the top of the Apache Bowl. Once here, angle towards Sierra Blanca and cross the fence, finding the route with the least up and down travel between there and the base of the peak. Once you reach the large boulder field in your path, begin angeling toward the east of the peak and the couloir you will use to reach the summit ridge. There is no trail to the base, so use your best route finding to get there. Along the way you will cross numerous elk trails, so don't let those lead you astray. On the Eastern ridge of Sierra Blanca, there is a main group of 3 couloirs. The center one is what you should aim for. Once you've reached the base, take the short scramble to the top, then walk over to the summit. Look in the pictures section for descriptions of the route in photo form.

Essential Gear

Appropriate clothing, and bad weather gear in case an afternoon thunderstorm rolls in. As always, carry more water than you think you'll need.

Miscellaneous Info

If you have information about this route that doesn't pertain to any of the other sections, please add it here.



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.