I would have called this ten deadly runs to ski before you die but you might die while skiing them.

Fear is relative. A beginner may find Friday Flats at Thredbo terrifying.

If you’ve graduated from snow ploughs then I dare you to try any of these world’s most terrifying ski runs on for size to get those knees shaking.

Be warned your heart may displace to your throat and your bowels may flee your body in fear, unless you’re an expert or extreme skier in which case you’ll eat these for breakfast.

Disclaimer: of course we don’t condone anyone skiing out of their ability level and all that.

Corbets Couloir, Jackson Hole Wyoming

This list would be incomplete without Corbet’s Couloir. Take on the mighty twenty foot (minimum) entry drop and if you make it without losing your dignity in full view of the famous Jackson Hole tram then you’ll be rewarded with sweet softer snow on a forty degree pitch. Piece of Corbett’s cake, right?


Delirium Dive, Sunshine Village Canada

You won’t be allowed through the backcountry gate entrance to Delirium unless you have an avalanche transceiver, a probe, a shovel and at least one other person with you. Expect a forty to fifty degree pitch regardless of where you choose to drop in and some sweet sweet heart pumping turns when you do.

You may need to hike the ridge line to get to some good stuff and it’s not pretty if you suffer from vertigo with a sheer drop off on both sides.


Trifide Couloir, La Grave, France

The Trifide Couloir’s 750metres of vertical drop is nothing compared to the 2000 metres of the Glacier de la Meije and du Tabuchet but it is still the most deadly on the extreme mountain of La Grave in France. The Trifide has claimed at last count, eight lives.  The issue is the width, or lack of it, and the no fall nature of the run for falling could end in, well, death.

Poubelle Couloir, Chamonix France

The key word here is abseil. You’ll need to do that to access the Poubelle (Dustbin) Couloir.

Once you make it down the thirty metres you will be greeted by a steep and narrow couloir. If you can’t jump turn then you’ll be in trouble, at least until the bowl at the bottom.

But to get down even further, which by the way is the only way out, you will need to rappel another cliff band or you could just watch the video and pretend you’ve done it.

The Super C, Portillo Chile

Guests at Portillo’s big yellow lodge talk about the Super C in hallowed tones. It takes a good couple of hours to hike to the resort’s most awe inspiring and jaw dropping ski run. If you fall then you will no doubt go home in a body bag and that’s just while hiking the steep face to get there.

Super C 07_zo
Crossing the no fall zone past the point of no return on the hike to the Super C. Photo credit: Sent Productions

In a good season the narrow couloir will serve up smooth powder snow to make you forget the hike but mainly because you’re concentrating on staying upright on the fifty degree entry pitch. Sent Productions have an excellent blog post that sums up the entire experience perfectly.

Ski mountaineer, Chris Davenport, loves the Super C. Take a POV trip down the couloir in his video.

Harikiri, Mayrhofen Austria

Ritual suicide, that is the Japanese meaning of Harikiri. A rather apt name for the steepest groomed slope (thirty eight degrees) in the world in Mayrhofen, Austria. So steep that everything required to keep this run in pristine perfect snow condition is anchored by a steel cable.


Christmas Chute, Alyeska Resort, Alaska

If you don’t have expert tattooed on your forehead do not try the steep and deeps of Alyeska Resort and for gods sake don’t hit Christmas Chute’s fifty degree pitch. That is all.

Scoping lines. Photo credit: Alyeska Resort
Scoping lines. Photo credit: Alyeska Resort

Two Smokes — Silverton Mountain, Colorado

You won’t be allowed anywhere near Two Smokes without a guide to hold your hand. Of course he’ll have to let go to let you tackle the fifty degree plus dog legged chute. Did I mention it is less than three metres wide at one spot?

Check out the entry to Two Smokes on this video.

Rambo, Crested Butte, Colorado

The man made ski run known as Rambo at Crested Butte is at it’s steepest, fifty five degrees of pitch. It will be over before you know it though, as the run is a mere three hundred metres long.

Pipeline, Snowbird, Utah

You’ll have to wait for the snow conditions to be right and you’ll need to know how to rappel as a rope is the only way in. When you have both ticked off then sign the required waiver and off you go. Oh, and you’ll have to hike to get there.

We know there are a thousand more just like this, which ones do you think should be on this list? 

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  1. What about Dobes at big sky, you begin by skiing 3/4 of the famed big couloir, then you climb up the lower wall into the narrow chute known as Dobes. The chute sometimes requires a mandatory straight line at the exit

  2. There was a run I ‘did’ at Crystal Mountain, WA where you have to access through a gate that says “warning, avalanche area”. You then proceed to ski steep through trees and no actual run to be seen. Spent most of it doing 3 or 4 turns at a time….


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