Trip Report: Hiking Shavano

I woke up at 0330 with plans on hiking Mt. Shavano and Mt. Tabeguache.  This hike would include my other love, motorcycle riding. Loaded up Giselle (my KTM 950 Adventure) and headed out close to 4am.  It was a bit warm here in Colorado Springs but the weather has shown some temps in the 30’s for higher towns in Colorado, fall is coming! Put insulating liners in my riding pants and also wore a fleece vest under a shoft shell and riding jacket. I hesitated on the layers but it would pay off.  The setting moon infront of me gave the illusion that the road would take me to the surface of that orange globe.  As I approached Trout Creek pass the thermometer on the bike registered 36 degrees F. Thanks to the extra layers I was warmer but I was still a bit chilly and welcomed the warmth of the sun as it was rising behing me.  The Roach book tells you to turn on County Road 252, it is 250. It is quite a long dirt road that has some pretty brutal washboard on it.  Passed a few minivans on the road and there jealous drivers as I ripped along at a pretty good clip.

Here is the view from the road. This was taken on my exit..

I arrived at Blank’s Cabin TH for the Colorado trail and started getting ready for the hike. Had to secure the bike with a cover and lock.

You hike ~1/2mille on the Colorado Trail then head off onto this trail. Get used to rocky uphill trail that is unrelenting. The guide books detail some short mileage and you may think this will be an easy day. NOT. Maybe it was drinking and eating greasy happy hour fair at a local dive or riding up Cheyenne Canon on my bicycle the day before but when I started hiking my legs were not feeling up to the task. My good fortune of wearing extra clothes for the ride were erased by my poor nutrition the days prior.

Once you get above tree line you can see the saddle that will take you to the summit and you think yes, there is still a bit of hking and it gets steeper. The sky was typical Colorado blue, beautiful.

Summit from the saddle.  I could see one person infront of me and another behind. The guy trailing seemed to be moving pretty quick and I thought he was on a bike. Met him on the summit on my descent and he was. He rode from Salida, honorable.

Looking North to Antero, Princeton and collegiates.

Tabeguache from Shavano. I was hoping to make this but I met another hiker coming back and he told me it took him 1 1/2 hours to traverse there and back. I was already behind schedule and his time for the traverse was double what I had planned. Made the tough decision to descend because I was behind schedule, did not plan for a longer day, and I was not feeling it. Next time I will incoporate a 13er when I return.

Summit shot. The clouds were starting the build a bit but they were remaining happy little cumulus so I was not worried. Met several people that were making good time coming up the trail. They were obviously having a better day than me!

Well that was the up. Seemed to take forever to get down.  Usually I am not very hungry but I ate quite a bit on this hike.  I also consumed 3L of water, way more than normal for me so that tells me how my body was doing this day.

I have had constant blister problems with boots so I wore an old pair of trail running shoes.  My current boots are Salewa, supposed to be blister free, NOT! I will be posting review soon. I also used my Mammut alpine pack instead of my Camelback. Ever wonder if that mesh in the back pad makes a difference, it does!  Aside from my physical state it was a beautiful day in the mountains so I can not complain.  Except that it was Friday so the tourons were in full force on the ride home. Giselle not only makes nasty dirt roads easy work but has plenty of power to overtake the RV’s doing 45mph that seem to refuse to pull off for the line of cars behind them.


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