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Couloir del Emperador

As good as anything in the Dolomites

Ski Touring Difficult

16 km
1.4 km
2.2 km
Low Point
904 m
High Point
2.2 km
Couloir del Emperador Map

Take the Bannalp lift (cash needed they don't take cards). We skinned up the piste to skinners left and then descended to the valley floor before booting up the couloir. With 2ft of unconsolidated snow, a much, much better idea would be to rap in from the top... but i only found out later that this is an option (one 60m rap (50 is too short), or 3 20m raps - so I'm told).


The couloir itself is a deep gash surrounded by towering cliffs. Mostly 35-40deg and 10+ m wide, but with one narrow section through which you can side slip.

Take care when skiing down to the valley floor (from the lift if you are an idiot like us) or more likely return to the lift station - the slopes are avalanche prone and require safe conditions.

Also if skiing back to the base of the lift, be sure to scope the snow cover first. It's unlikely to work for you past early March

Enjoy this unknown gem



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

High Exposure (E3)

3 out of 4

In case of a fall, death is highly likely.


2 out of 4

Away from help but easily accessed.

Best time to visit

between January and April


  • Cliffs
  • Couloir
  • Ski Mountaineering

Equipment required

  • Rope
  • Skins
  • Ice axe
  • Crampons