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Flattop Mountain - S side

Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
Baby Dragon T 
Dragon's Tail Couloir T 
Dragon's Tooth T 
Enter The Dragon (aka Old Route) 
South East Face Couloir T 
Southeast Face T 
Steep Is Flat T 
Two Dragons T 
Unsorted Routes:

Flattop Mountain - S side  

Photos:  Recent | Best | Popular
Elevation: 12,324'
Location: 40.3092, -105.69 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 42,021
Administrators: Ben Mottinger, Leo Paik, John McNamee, Frances Fierst, Monomaniac, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Joel Levenberg on Mar 25, 2005
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BETA PHOTO: The Southeast Face of Flattop from Emerald Lake. ...


This submission was originally part of single listing for Flattop. Due to reorganizational effort, this was split into 2 sections. The first is here.

In a fine little drainage between Hallett Peak and Flattop mountain, you will find a multitude of rock and snow/ice routes. There are many possible routes up and down Flattop (due north), Hallett (due south), and Andrew's Glacier (west).

For the purposes of organization, we'll limit this subarea to those mixed/ice routes on the southern aspect of the mountain which are approached from the Emerald Lake area.

There are at least 8 distinct routes and 2 variations here including:

Tyndall Glacier, WI2 M2
Dragontail Couloir, WI2 M2
Dragon Tooth aka Tower Gully, M2 mod snow
Flang, WI5 M5
various SE Face routes, up to 5.7 WI 2.

Getting There 

Park at the Bear Lake Parking lot (newly renovated) at the end of Bear Lake Road. Hike to Emerald Lake. Skirt the lake and head up and right toward Flattop.

Climbing Season

Weather station 8.1 miles from here

8 Total Routes

['4 Stars',0],['3 Stars',3],['2 Stars',5],['1 Star',0],['Bomb',0]

The Classics

Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Flattop Mountain - S side:
Steep Is Flat   M5-6 Steep Snow     Trad, Mixed, Snow, Alpine, 4 pitches, 500'   
Dragon's Tail Couloir   WI2 M2     Trad, Mixed, Ice, Alpine   
Dragon's Tooth   M2 Mod. Snow     Trad, Mixed, Snow, Alpine, Grade V   
Southeast Face   5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b WI2+ M1 Mod. Snow     Trad, Mixed, Ice, Snow, Alpine, 2 pitches, 900'   
Enter The Dragon (aka Old Route)   5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b M4 Steep Snow     Mixed, Snow, Alpine, 6 pitches, 800'   
Browse More Classics in Flattop Mountain - S side

Featured Route For Flattop Mountain - S side
Close to the top.

Dragon's Tail Couloir WI2 M2  CO : CO Ice & Mixed : ... : Flattop Mountain - S side
Dragon's Tail Couloir is the first of two couloirs on the south face of Flattop Mountain, above Emerald Lake. Snow up to 50 degrees is possible, as are a few rocky steps that may or may not be iced over. 1,500 feet of "fun" snow climbing interspersed with a couple short, steeper steps puts you near the summit of Flattop, with some incredible views of the park. Climb it in the early season, it may be threatened by a cornice. ...[more]   Browse More Classics in CO

Photos of Flattop Mountain - S side Slideshow Add Photo
Dragon's Tail and Dragon's Tooth Couloirs, Flattop...
Dragon's Tail and Dragon's Tooth Couloirs, Flattop...
Dirk Bockelmann in the right "east" Drag...
Dirk Bockelmann in the right "east" Drag...
Dragon's Tail and Dragon's Tooth Couloirs, Flattop...
Dragon's Tail and Dragon's Tooth Couloirs, Flattop...
South side of Flattop from top of the east buttres...
BETA PHOTO: South side of Flattop from top of the east buttres...

Comments on Flattop Mountain - S side Add Comment
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By Joel Levenberg
Jun 1, 2005
After a week of good settlement in March '05 we snowboarded this north west facing couloir from 12,200 directly to about 11,000 ft. We tried to go back and snowboard it again in May, but the weather never softened the couloir up, so we bailed east along the top of Flattop to a northeast couloir at 12,000 down to about 10,800. This area offers excellent ski/snowboard mountaineering, but the wind and snow conditions are fickle.
By Anonymous Coward
Jun 19, 2005
Nice post Joel. .. My wife and I climbed the pictured gully on 6.18.05. It turned out to be a fun moderate snow climb to the summit of Flattop. I believe the route is described as West Couloir in Rossiter's RMNP guide. Straight forward approach, breaking off the Fern Lake trail at the junction with Notchtop and heading SW towards lake Helen and the obvious Ptarmigan glacier. The gully comes into view to the South shortly after passing Lake Helene, just East of the prominent snow fields. The climb followed an interesting gully on 40-50 degree snow, steepening to high 50s at the top. We didn't encounter any alpine ice as it was still pretty filled in with snow.

As a sidenote, looked like there were still some nice turns to be had in Notchtop couloir as viewed directly North of our position :)
By Eli Helmuth
From: Estes Park, CO
Mar 22, 2006
I think "high 50s might be an overstatement. An accurate inclonometer reading might be helpful! Like penis length, slope angles are usually over estimated.
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