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Shavano: Recent Snow Conditions?

Colorado 14er peak questions and conditions should be posted here. 14er Trip Reports
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Shavano: Recent Snow Conditions?

Postby cojeep » Tue May 19, 2009 8:47 pm

Anyone laid eyes on the Angel's snow coverage since the last TR (5-2-09)? Any beta is appreciated.
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Re: Shavano: Recent Snow Conditions?

Postby RoanMtnMan » Tue May 19, 2009 8:52 pm

Drove by last Thursday. Almost no snow left above treeline. Definitely not skiable. The snow is very avoidable above treeline on foot but I hear there are still some posthole issues below.
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Re: Shavano: Recent Snow Conditions?

Postby usfgal » Tue May 19, 2009 9:29 pm

Went up this past weekend. We didn't have postholing issues below treeline. There are some short snow fields in the 11,000-ish range and higher, but they are easy to negotiate. I saw a few people with skis, but I don't know that they were able to use them. The angel looks pretty slim. If you're looking to hike, the trail is in good shape.

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Re: Shavano: Recent Snow Conditions?

Postby theskillets » Tue May 19, 2009 9:45 pm

Did you use crampons and an axe or were you able to avoid the snow?

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Re: Shavano: Recent Snow Conditions?

Postby usfgal » Tue May 19, 2009 9:55 pm

Some of the snow is unavoidable. I had my crampons in my pack and didn't use them. I stupidly left my ice axe in the car and wished I'd had it on the descent (especially when you first descend off of Shavano - just a few hundred vertical feet, but enough to be kind of stressful). Crampons are definitely not necessary. I don't think an ice axe is NECESSARY, but it would be very helpful to have it.

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Re: Shavano: Recent Snow Conditions?

Postby Phill the Thrill » Wed May 20, 2009 12:44 am

We climbed Shavano/Tabeguache on Sunday 5/17. You don't need crampons, though you may do some minor postholing. You will want an ice axe, however, as this hike has many glissade opportunities, including the Angel of Shavano couloir. We glissaded approx 1,000 ft. vertical down the right arm and body of the Angel, but snow conditions are deteriorating quickly. We had incredibly nice weather and were able to summit Tabeguache Peak with no problem.
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Re: Shavano: Recent Snow Conditions?

Postby theskillets » Wed May 20, 2009 7:57 am

Did anyone bring and/or use snowshoes this weekend on Shavanno?

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Re: Shavano: Recent Snow Conditions?

Postby usfgal » Wed May 20, 2009 8:37 am

No snow shoes are necessary; I did not see anyone using them.

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Re: Shavano: Recent Snow Conditions?

Postby nebraskaflatlander » Wed May 20, 2009 8:47 am

We brought and used snowshoes but only needed them to climb the angel, since none of us owns crampons. The climb was fun and the glissade down the left arm & body was even better.
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Re: Shavano: Recent Snow Conditions?

Postby cojeep » Wed May 20, 2009 8:29 pm

Thanks for all the insight. Sounds like crampons and ice axe are in order--just in case.
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Re: Shavano: Angel assault

Postby 5314ers » Thu May 21, 2009 6:48 am

Just for clarification, is what is being said is that a complete snow ascent up the Angel is out this year?
I was planning on doing it end of the month.

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Re: Shavano: Angel assault

Postby Phill the Thrill » Thu May 21, 2009 7:59 am

5314ers wrote:Just for clarification, is what is being said is that a complete snow ascent up the Angel is out this year?
I was planning on doing it end of the month.


As of Sunday, you could still do a snow ascent on the Angel, but do it soon, the snow is melting away quickly. There was continuous snow from the base of the Angel all the way up the right arm (climber's left), but very little snow remains below the Angel and snowshoes are not necessary on the approach.
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