Chutes and Cliffs on Crystal Mountain’s Gnarliest Lines

Expert-only freeride lines at Washington's renowned Crystal Mountain.

Greg Heil



by Crystal Mountain Resort

Creative Commons: Attribution


If you live in Seattle, Crystal Mountain is likely your go-to ski resort. Boasting over 2,600 acres of skiable terrain and a whopping 486 inches of snow per year, this massive resort not only serves the local Seattle population but draws in visitors from around the world.

While any skier or snowboarded can head to Crystal Mountain and enjoy a fantastic day filled with cruise-y groomers and wide-open powder bowls, this mountain is renowned as the “freeride capitol of the Pacific Northwest,” according to Crystal’s abundance of gnarly big mountain freeride terrain attracts numerous freeride competitions, including “the Northwest’s only Freeride World Qualifier 4-star competition,” according to SnowBrains.

In this guidebook we’ve collected the absolute gnarliest freeride lines that Crystal Mountain has to offer. You can expect chutes so narrow that you can’t turn your skis, massive cliff bands, mandatory airs both in and out of the lines, poor snowpack, high avalanche danger, and so much more. Many of these lines require the conditions to be absolutely perfect before they can be attempted. Some lines take all season to fill in and bury the boulders, and others require a perfect combination of weather and avalanche conditions to not instantly turn into an avalanche. But for the expert freerider, this insane level of challenge makes Crystal Mountain a mecca that you have to visit at least once in your lifetime!



Left Goat Chute

A narrow steep chute for experienced experts that requires mandatory air

Chute to Kill

A deep gully/couloir for experienced backcountry experts

Missing Finger

A narrow chute guarded by a cliff requiring mandatory air.

Tower 16 Face

A steep rocky face directly under the Northway Chair


A steep, narrow couloir requiring mandatory air.

Light Brown

A steep rocky face on the north side of the King for experienced experts only.

Pinball Chute

This narrow, no-turns couloir, along with the steep face to the left, is not for the faint of heart.


A steep, rocky face reserved for experienced experts

The Cliff

A steep cliff requiring mandatory air.

L-Tree Chute (aka The Ramp)

This rarely explored, deep couloir is too narrow for most experts. Usually this gully is jumped in competitions.

Two Easy Turns

This narrow chute is one of the most challenging runs in the Crystal backcountry


This north-facing chute starts in the open and doglegs through the trees.