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Couloir Series: The X Couloir on Mount Whymper

It's one of the more serious and committing couloirs in the area

The X Couloir is a feature on Mount Wymper in the Canadian Rockies that has been skied a handful of times. The line is accessed via the Chickadee Valley and can be done in a morning session.

The mountain is found on Highway 93 South between Banff and Radium, which many locals call “powder highway.” The approach to the X Couloir takes up you up towards the North Bowl, which is another popular ski line.

In 2019, the X Couloir was skied by Matt Ruta and friends. Ruta said here, “I’ve got a bit of a running mental shortlist of excellent couloir experiences, and this one easily made the cut. The X is a proud line and conditions were near perfect from top to bottom. The valley mush was still solidly frozen, so we cruised easily out, ensuring that Joel had more than enough time to make it to work in Canmore by 2 PM. All in all, a fantastic way to ease back into the rhythm of Rockies steep skiing season.”

The mountain was first climbed in 1901 by Edward Whymper Joseph Bossoney, Christian Kaufmann, Christian Klucker and Joseph Pollinger. Wymper also made the first ascent of the Switzerland’s Matterhorn in 1865.

The X Couloir was skied in March 2021 by Brette Harrington, Mark Herbison and Shane Kroeger, and linked with the east face of Wymper. You can watch the descent below. Like all backcountry ski lines in the Rockies, this should only be attempted by veteran ski and splitboarders. Be sure to check avalanche conditions before heading out here.

X Couloir

Couloir Series

Grand Daddy Couloir, Rockies
Corbet’s Couloir, Jackson
Saudan Couloir, Whistler
Kindergarten Couloir, Boom Lake
Popes Peak’s North Couloir