Dragon’s Tail Couloir

Rocky Mountain National Park has some of the most aesthetic lines I have ever seen.  After being introduced to the Terrain Park last year, I’ve loved exploring the park a little further for more lines.  Dragon’s Tail is by far the coolest one.  Jon and I had a beer and a burrito on Friday night and discussed a couple options until we landed on the Dragon’s Tail and it was a no-brainer.  Zach offered to drive and picked Jon and I up the next morning for a late start.  We were on the trailhead headed up to the top of Flattop by 9 am.  After a quick steep scramble on the other side of Bear Lake, we hooked up with the main skin track that was a well-established route straight to the top.  Just below the summit, the looker’s left side of the Y at the top of the Dragon’s Tail dropped away from the summit ridge.  We strapped in around noon and were relieved and surprised to see the entrance to the couloir wasn’t a 20 ft drop and the line continued without interruption through an apron onto Emerald Lake below.  After snapping a few shots of Longs Peak in the background, I was the first to drop in the upper bowl.  The snow felt stable after the first couple turns and I got a bit more aggressive before finding a safe spot to give the go ahead to Zach and Jon above.  We all ripped down the couloir one at a time next to the nearly 1,000 ft rock wall that towered over our right shoulders.  Some slushy turns down by the lake and a couple high fives wrapped up an awesome day.  I’ll definitely be back for round two sometime down the road.
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Dragon's Tail Couloir from Tyler Grubb on Vimeo.

-Tyler Grubb

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