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Wedge NW Couloir

A Whistler classic steep ski line not to be underestimated!

Ski Touring Difficult

1.3 km
3 m
608 m
0-1 hrs
Low Point
2.3 km
High Point
2.9 km
Wedge NW Couloir Map

Wedge Couloir is a huge line, visible from Highway 99 in Whistler and a common early steep ski line in skier's careers but also a serious undertaking. Wedge is the biggest peak in the corridor and the line itself is long and conditions may change throughout.


Access via booting the line makes it easy to find and dealing with the entrance is less of a concern but you are exposed to significant overhead hazard and you may find yourself being sluffed by other parties skiing in from the top (to whom you are invisible). Conditions may change significantly from the bottom to top!

Access via the top is usually done by climbing the NE Arete (a classic in it's own right) to the summit then skiing down the west ridge to the entrance at approx 2780m. This entrance can be tricky to find, rocky, firm, and narrow. A rope to scout is highly recommended as well as the ability to build a belay in a variety of circumstances. Entering the couloir, it's important to trend skier's left through the steepest portions, until you enter the main couloir and then the skiing becomes considerably easier. A fall at the entrance would be very bad.

It's also possible to ski a bit further down the West Ridge to ~2650m and enter the couloir from the side. This may have a cornice that makes entry tricky or prevents it altogether.

Once you're in the couloir, it's pretty straightforward and the couloir is exceptionally wide! Make a short climb back up to the Parkhurst-Wedge Col to return to Wedgemount Lake via the Glacier (or a slightly longer skin up Parkhurst to hit Parkhurst Couloir).



Serious gradient of 30-38 degrees where a real risk of slipping exists.

Medium Exposure (E2)

2 out of 4

As well as the slope itself, there are some obstacles (such as rock outcrops) which could aggravate injury.


2 out of 4

Away from help but easily accessed.

Best time to visit

between January and April


  • Alpine
  • Couloir
  • Ski Mountaineering

Equipment required

  • Rope
  • Skins
  • Ice axe
  • Crampons
  • Glacier kit

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area