Support 14ers.com
Buying gear? Please use these links to help 14ers.com:

More info...

Other ways to help...
 Peak(s):  West Spanish Pk  -  13,626 feet
East Spanish Peak - 12,683 feet
Point 11,594 - 11,594 feet
 Post Date:  11/07/2010
 Date Climbed:   11/05/2010
 Posted By:  Furthermore

 Gaining Prominence on E & W Spanish   


West Spanish Peak 13,626
Point 11,594
East Spanish Peak 12,683


November 5, 2010
Trailheads: Top of Cordova Pass and Wahatoya TH (4WD)
Total Mileage: ~16.7 Miles, Total Gain: ~6,500



Hiking toward West Spanish during sunrise.
Image

The alarm went off earlier than I would have liked at 3:00 AM and shortly thereafter, I was driving to Colorado Spring to meet up with my climbing partner Al. After I met up with Al at 4:30 AM, we made the drive to La Veta where we followed Colorado 12 to the top of Cucharas Pass. From the top of Cucharas Pass, we made a left turn and followed a Forest Service road for 6 miles to the top of Cordova Pass.

We geared up and we were hiking up the excellent West Peak trail by 7:30 AM. From all of the other 13eners I have been climbing lately, it was a nice change to have a great trail. Eventually, we broke out of the trees and started our way up West Spanish Peak's southeast ridge. Again, the trail was quite a delight as we worked our way toward to the top. Al had read a trip report of someone complaining about some loose obnoxious talus on this route. That wasn't the case and that chap needs to go climb some San Juan 13eners and report back.

Getting closer to West Spanish
Image

In the shadow of West Spnaish
Image

The southeast ridge of West Spanish.
Image

Al working his way up West Spanish.
Image

The last bit to the summit of West Spnaish.
Image

With perfect weather and little wind, we topped out on West Spanish Peak at 9:40 AM. Wow. Some of the best views in the state. We followed the well traveled trail back to the car arriving at 11:20 AM, took a short break, and continued directly south to the top of 11,594. The views weren't as good and we returned back to the car at 12:00 PM.

Al making his way toward the summit of West Spanish.
Image

East Spanish from West Spanish.
Image

Neat dikes.
Image

360 view on West Spanish.
Image

Now for the most complicated part of the day. Finding the Wahatoya trailhead. I had some "good" directions and if street signs existed, the directions would have been good. Here are some updated directions to the Wahatoya Trailhead. If you have a decent map La Veta, navigation isn't a problem. We did not have a good map of La Veta and Delorme conveniently puts La Veta right at a page change.

Take Colorado 12 south through La Veta. When you are on the very south end of town and about to leave town, Colorado 12 bends right (3 orange right turn arrows). Take a left turn (east) on Cuchara Street (UNMARKED) which is just past the closed Blue Rooster Bar and Grill, a wood building. Follow Cuchara Street for .2 miles where it will bend right (south). After the bend, follow this road for .9 miles and make a left turn (east) where there is a sign for Huajatolla Valley. Take this road for .4 miles (if you continue straight, there is a Dead End sign) and then make a right turn (south). Follow this road for 5 miles and look for a 4WD road on the right. There is a small wood sign marked Wahatoya Trail at the beginning of the 4WD road. Follow the easy, narrow 4WD road to the start of the Wahatoya Trail.


That might save you 30 minutes or more of driving in La Veta. I now know the back roads well on the east side of La Veta.

After 30-40 minutes of frustration, we finally found our way and made it to the Wahatoya trailhead (~9,800) at 1:20 PM. Shortly thereafter, we were hiking our way up the Wahatoya trail at 1:30 PM and after about 2 miles up trail, we reached the saddle, marked by a wooden post and a cairn, between East Spanish and West Spanish. From the saddle, we took a left onto a climbers trail and followed the trail up the west ridge of East Spanish.

First good view of East Spanish on the Wahatoya trail.
Image

Although the trail wasn't as traveled as West Spanish's, it was fairly easy to follow and between ~10,400-11,000 the trail steepened dramatically. The trail pretty much ended at treeline, and from there was a stable talus hike to the summit. Unfortunately, the last .3 miles were very deceiving and we arrived on the summit at 4:30 PM with perfect weather. I think East Spanish had better views from the summit than West Spanish.

West Spanish at ~10,400 on East Spanish.
Image

Out of treeline on East Spanish. West Spanish in the background.
Image

Al working his way up the talus on East Spanish.
Image

Last bit up East Spanish.
Image

It is only .3 miles.
Image

Al making the final steps up East Spanish.
Image

Al making the final steps up East Spanish.
Image

360 degree view on East Spanish.
Image

Since daylight was limited, our break was short and we returned on the route we ascended. Once we hit the trail, we hustled back to the car arriving just before dark at 6:30 PM. This was perhaps one of the best November ascents I have had with no snow, very little wind and crystal clear skies. I dropped Al off in the Springs and arrived home at 10:15 PM and passed out.

Sunset.
Image

Sunset over Blanca.
Image

Route Map.
Image


Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):
 


  • Comments or Questions (9)
dmccool


cool report     2010-11-07 19:50:57
thanks for posting. the weather looked great - beautiful area, too


mtgirl


Beautiful area     2010-11-08 10:49:03
I've been up West Spanish Peak a couple times, but it sure looks like I need to return for East Spanish Peak. Thanks for the beta. Such a beautiful area with great views.


Matt


One of my favorites plus beta     2011-01-18 20:38:48
Even though it's an easy hike, W. Spanish would be one of the five peaks I am most happy about experiencing and making the summit of in 2010. It's a magnificent mountain with amazing views.
Thanks very much for the driving direx and info on East Spanish. That's a non-14er P2k that wont be hard to find partners for.


Chicago Transplant


Nice Stuff     2010-11-09 11:05:10
Great day, and some very useful information on the routes, thanks! I hope to be spending some time down there next spring/summer as we are working on a project in the area, so I will be putting your La Veta driving directions to the test!


kaiman

Thanks for the trail info and pics     2010-11-10 10:59:47
definitely on the to-do list for the next year.


piper14er


11,594     2010-11-10 13:41:33
Where is the great pictures of you on that 11er?


Furthermore


11,594     2010-11-11 15:53:22
Mike - Hopefully those driving directions will not let you down like mine did.

Al - Um.. yeah... not a real big fan of the ”tree” photos. The others were much more exciting.


d_baker


spokes of a wheel     2010-11-12 12:13:17
Those rock dikes are cool! I first met Gladbach years ago when he lead a CMC trip up there, and I remember him describing the dikes looking like spokes of a wheel.
You sure do get around and out a lot Furthermore!
Thanks for posting, I might have to revisit the Spanish Peaks someday.


milan


Super report - it works!     2011-09-05 16:13:10
Thanks for posting this report, this weekend I hiked both peaks exactly like you did except I came Friday Night, slept in Cordova Pass and stayed in Wahatoya TH till sunday morning. I also did not hike the 11594 pt. Your report helped me a lot to organize the trip for one day hike and also to find the CR360 in La Veta. I was always thinking of those two peaks driving around them and finaly hiked to their smmits and it was worth of it. The views are just amazing and the area had much less people than the most of 14ers.



   Using your forum id/password. Not registered? Click Here


Caution: The information contained in this report may not be accurate and should not be the only resource used in preparation for your climb. Failure to have the necessary experience, physical conditioning, supplies or equipment can result in injury or death. 14ers.com and the author(s) of this report provide no warranties, either express or implied, that the information provided is accurate or reliable. By using the information provided, you agree to indemnify and hold harmless 14ers.com and the report author(s) with respect to any claims and demands against them, including any attorney fees and expenses. Please read the 14ers.com Safety and Disclaimer pages for more information.

© 2014 14ers.com®, 14ers Inc.