West Peak Trail from Cordova Pass
Climb date: October 5, 2013
Scott and I had seen this mountain so many times on our way across the state to hike 14ers. After finishing on Capitol the previous month, we decided to get one last high summit in before snow became a common sight. West Spanish Peak is the Easternmost 13er / 4,000m peak in the US and is the Las Animas County highpoint.
It's a long and interesting drive to the top of Cordova Pass, at 11,248'. There are restrooms, ample parking, and a picnic area. After a brief hike through some trees you come out to a big open meadow and the summit is visible right there in front of you.
|West Spanish Peak from the trail|
|Very pretty and easy hiking at first|
|At treeline, looking ahead|
|It gets steep and just goes up|
|Nearing the top, but it seems like it never ends|
|The slope relents, and it's an easy walk to the summit|
|East Spanish Peak from West Spanish Peak|
|Igneous dikes some 5,000 feet below us.|
|Scott, Kerry, and Dan on the summit|
|There is tremendous vertical relief from the summit|
|Every Sangre De Cristo 14er is in this picture!|
|Little Bear, Blanca, Ellingwood, and Mt. Lindsey (Blanca Group)|
|Crestone Peak, Needle, Humboldt (maybe more)|
|Culebra Peak (center)|
|Iced up waterfall|
|Coming down the ridge, happy to find something resembling a trail|
|Beautiful Day, nice trail, great friends|
|Wish you could bottle up this feeling|
|All in a days work|
If you haven't been to West Spanish, I highly recommend it. It's not difficult, although the trail above treeline is lacking. The experience is somewhat unique, the geology interesting, the views are tremendous, and it's a nice area of Colorado you probably haven't been to yet. This was our first 13er trip and we enjoyed it.