• Date - 04/26/2019
  • Elevation - 12,324'
  • Route - Smoke and Dragons Couloir
  • Miles - 5.0
  • Elevation Gain - 2,540'
  • ACME Mapper - Link
  • CalTopo - Link
  • Partners - John Balciar, Mark Andes


After some quick planning, John, Mark, and I decided to try a new snow climb in Rocky Mountain National Park.  Smoke and Dragons Couloir starts up Dragons Tooth Couloir on the east face of Flattop Mountain.  About one-third of the way up the Dragons Tooth Couloir, you enter Smoke and Dragons Couloir on the right side and climb a series of rock steps and snow ribbons and end at the top of Dragons Tail Couloir.  It was a fun climb similar to Dreamweaver Couloir on Mount Meeker.  Snow conditions were really good for late April.  None of us were interested in trekking over to Flattop Mountain so we just picked up the Flattop Trail and hiked back to Bear Lake.  It took an hour to get to the base of the climb from the trailhead and our car-to-car trail time was 5 hours and 15 minutes.


Dragons Tooth Couloir and Dragons Tail CouloirMarkJohnJamesJohn approaching the climb across Emerald Lake.
SunriseGearing UpMark starting the climb up Dragons Tooth Couloir.John starting up Dragons Tooth Couloir.James in Dragons Tooth Couloir.Mark with Emerald Lake below.James at the entrance to Smoke and Dragons Couloir.Mark approaching Smoke and Dragons Couloir.James and John at the entrance to Smoke and Dragons Couloir.James and John in Smoke and Dragons Couloir.John kicking steps.MarkMarkMarkJohnMarkMarkMark and JohnJamesJamesMarkJames in upper Smoke and Dragons Couloir.JohnJamesJames and Longs PeakJohn finishing the climb.John finishing the climb.John finishing the climb.John at the top of the climb.JamesJamesJames at the top of the climb.Mark and Longs PeakMark at the top of the climb.James, Mark, and JohnHiking Out