| West Spanish Peak - high and dry
West Spanish Peak had been on my to-do list for several years, and since it seemed like the snow had mostly melted on the south-facing route, last Friday seemed like a good time to give it a shot.
Camped at Cordova Pass (great views, but cold and windy. Those seem to go hand in hand in Colorado) and hit the trail at 7 a.m., expecting a fairly easy and snow-free climb.
Trail was great, mildly sloping through twisted bristlecone pine forests with great views of the Southwest and the Sangres, until we hit treeline.
The "trail" then gains 1,600 feet of elevation in a mile, a steep scramble over loose talus, poorly marked with cairns, fading in and out of existence.
It took us 2.5 hours to reach the summit. A couple snow fields on the steep part were easily bypassed, and the snow at the top was hard and simple to walk on.
Overall, a great day. The wind about blew us off the summit, so we didn‘t stay long to soak in the great views of the Sangres and the Cuchara Valley, but we saw only two other people.
Total distance was 2.5 miles, with 2,200 feet of elevation gain. A good get-in-shape early-season climb. From the way my legs felt the next day, I could use a couple more get-in-shape climbs.
Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):