Saturday, March 31, 2012

La Veta/Trinchera Peak (the hard way)

We were in La Veta for the weekend:

And hoped to climb West Spanish Peak, one of my Colorado to-do's.  Unfortunately, the road from Cucharas Pass to Cordova Pass was snowed in, and we backtracked to the road up Cucharas Creek to Blue Lake.  This road was blocked by snow, too, close to the highway, but we started hiking anyway.  We thought about turning around at Blue Lake, but one step led to another and soon we were on the approach to Trinchera Peak (13,517 ft.):

More photos here.

It's a striking summit, and triggered a lot of good memories for us.  We spent a fair amount of time in 2001 climbing in the Sangres, and here we were revisiting the sights from a new perspective.  The Mt. Blanca Massif:

Culebra Peak:

And of course the dramatic views down into the San Luis Valley.  Of course we'll be back to try West Spanish Peak when the snow melts:

It was a big day - the only way we made it up there was by following the packed-down snowmobile track on the North Fork Trail to treeline.  Even then, there was a fair amount of postholing.  It's good to see a fair amount of snow up there even with such a warm and dry March.  Plus we were apparently the first ones up there this year:

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