Paradise Sign Chute

Crystal Mountain

Mount Rainier National Park

A classic narrow chute for experts.

Freeride Skiing Severe

Distance
317 m
Ascent
0 m
Descent
173 m
Low Point
1.8 km
High Point
2 km
Gradient
37˚
VIEW ON MAP
Paradise Sign Chute Map

Description

Paradise Sign Chute is a classic PNW couloir. Broad at the top and narrow in the middle, this chute offers steep skiing/riding for experts. This chute gets its name from the orange sign at the top reading "Avalanche Control Point". A few of these ancient signs still dot the slopes at Crystal. Another one can be found on Exterminator Ridge. These signs were once used by the ski patrol for reference. Note that once through the Northway gates, cliffs and other hazards are not marked. This is avalanche prone terrain. Ski/ride with a partner and carry the proper equipment. A large cornice builds at the top of this chute. Take caution as getting caught in a slide here could be very dangerous. Below is a narrow chute with cliffs and trees on either side. The upper section is the steepest part. Watch out for a hardened traverse track that forms halfway down when people enter Gate 4 and traverse across this chute. Below this traverse track, work your way through a narrow spot hemmed in by cliffs and trees to emerge on the apron below. There is also another slot to the skiers left, that is hidden from view. Follow the traverse track as it rounds the ridge, looking for an entrance below you. Either way, continue down the apron to Paradise and then onto Otto Bahn for a total of approximately 800 vertical feet.

Difficulty

Severe

Steep skiing at 38-45 degrees. This requires very good technique and the risk of falling has serious consequences.

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.

Remoteness

2 out of 4

Away from help but easily accessed.

Features

  • Trees
  • Cliffs

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area