Peak(s):  Mt. Shavano  -  14,229 feet
Date Posted:  05/05/2012
Date Climbed:   05/05/2012
Author:  gonzalj
 Angel's Hollows  

Yesterday Steve Gladbach, his daughter Alise, myself & Colin ('climber') made our way down to the Shav/Tab TH and camped in anticipation of an early morning start to make our way up the fading angel. The day needless to say became an incredible struggle where only Steve & his daughter summited and it extracted amazing amounts of frustration, energy, route finding, but also made for a very good lesson learned at the end of the day. After a little bit of a rough night's sleep we start on the trail at daybreak at 5:30. After about half an hour on the trail we noticed the first downed tree of many more to come and thanks to Steve were someahat able to find a way to make it out of the trees in the basin below the angel about 3 hours after we started. The two things on this day I was so thankful for is that I brought my gps and tracked our route up and that Steve was able to provide first hand intel of helping us make our way to the angel. At that point taking me 3 and a half hours to go 2 miles and 2300' of gain coupled with not the great sleep in the world really wore on me and I started feeling not all that great with most of my energy warped and at that point in time based on what lie ahead of me decided to go back early and try to maneuver my way back to my car while Steve & his daughter continued. At that point Colin and I followed my gps route down to where we entered back into the trees. For a while we were able to stay close to our original way up, but after a while of trying to find the path of least resistance we just totally lost our original route up. After about 2 to 2 and a half hours descending needless to say we were lost in a heap to fallen trees almost everywhere and no signs of a trail, fence, people anything and all of a sudden I started getting a little worried wondering if we're going to be able to find our way back. So Colin and I kept looking around trying to find the path of least resistance while also keeping an eye on the compass and elevation functions on my gps to give us a bearing of where we might be. For the most part we kept heading east as we knew that's the way we needed to head back to make our way to the TH and when we had moments where we could see the angel or shav or in some cases Mt. Ouray we made slightly adjustments to our route either heading east, northeast or southeast using shav as our main reference. Eventually we were able to find our way back to the Colorado trail about half a mile north of the TH and then made our way back and never feeling so excited about something that didn't involve summiting a mountain. Anyway, this was a very tough day that created all kinds of challenges and was by no means a class 2 sawatch 14er hike up. If you plan on going, just beware and definitely take your gps.

Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):

 Comments or Questions
Nathan Hoobler

05/06/2012 03:05
I can't believe how little snow there is on the Angel. That's truly amazing for May 5!!


04/02/2015 19:45
Compare to last year - May 7, 2011


05/06/2012 12:51
Yep, it's totally crazy how little snow the angel has. Summer season is upon us.


Learning Experience
05/07/2012 22:10
If this trip taught me anything it's that good old fashion orienteering using a compass is a lost art that I need to work on more. I will get my revenge Shav/Tab!


05/07/2012 22:23
It was a great feeling working together to get out of our predicament & definitely a good idea to brush up on those skills. I'll definitely come back for my revenge, but not until those trees are gone.

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