Mt Shavano & Tabeguache Peak Standard Route Guide

Mt Shavano holds the distinction of being the southernmost Sawatch Range 14er. Along with its twin to the west, Tabeguache Peak, it anchors the bottom of this massive range. Mt Shavano is also home to one of the state’s most famous snow climbs, a snow field known as the Angel of Shavano due to its lady-like figure. Hike the peak in the late spring or early summer to see this special snow formation. Start planning your trip with this Mt Shavano & Tabeguache Peak Standard Route Guide. 

PLANNING A WINTER CLIMB? READ MY BLOG ON CLIMBING 14ERS IN WINTER CONDITIONS

Mt Shavano & Tabeguache Peak Fast Facts

  • Standard Route: East Slopes
  • Trailhead: Shavano/Tabeguache
  • Elevation Gain: 4,600 feet
  • Round-Trip Distance: 9 Miles
  • Difficulty Level: Class 2 Scramble
  • Range: Sawatch Range

Mt Shavano & Tabeguache Peak Standard Route Guide

Start out from the trailhead and take a short trail leading to the Colorado Trail. Take a right at this juncture, passing by cattle fencing and a large Aspen grove.

Mt Shavano Standard Route Guide

Continue for about a quarter mile along the Colorado Trail until you come to a second trail junction. Take a left on to the main Mt Shavano trail.

Mt Shavano Standard Route Guide

Take the trail up the gully, along the creek, for about a mile. Eventually you will reach a sharp right turn and begin climbing back up the ridge on the right up the gully. There may be a few patches of snow in the spring as you near tree line. 

Continue above tree line along the side of the ridge, heading towards the upper half of the Angel of Shavano snow field. You may need to cross the Angel’s neck if snow remains. Aim for the saddle, at which point you’ll take a right and double back towards Mt Shavano.

Now the crux of the climb lies before you: Mt Shavano’s southern face. Take the weaving, Class 2 path from the summit, across the slopes and up and around to the summit. There are several options to make it to the top. Enjoy your time up there, and make sure you check the weather before committing to go on to Tabeguache Peak.

Head beyond the summit, following the ridge that connects with Tabeguache. Take care to make sure you’re looking at the right summit. Downclimbing from Mt Shavano is the only challenging part of this climb, so take your time. 

Continue down several hundred feet to the saddle below before climbing back up. Tabeguache has a gentle slope up the ridge – talus hop for the last few hundred feet to reach the summit. 

Once you make it, enjoy it! Take pictures, enjoy a snack, but be sure to head down with enough time to make it to tree line by noon to avoid lightning risk. I hope you enjoyed my Mt Shavano & Tabeguache Peak Standard Route Guide.

Mt Shavano Standard Route Guide

Hiking & climbing 14ers is an inherently high-risk activity – do so at your own risk, and use the following best practices to help keep yourself safe.

  1. Bring the Ten Essentials and the knowledge/skill to use them.
  2. Leave your plans with someone back home along with a detailed itinerary.
  3. Start early, and end early: Be back at tree line by noon to avoid lightning.
  4. Check the weather forecast and stay home during inclement weather.
  5. Research your route and bring a compass & topographic map.

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About the Author: Alex Derr

Alex Derr is a mountaineer and blogger based in Denver Colorado. He is working to climb Colorado’s highest 100 peaks, and the 20 tallest peaks in California. He created The Next Summit to share advice, stories, history & reflections from the Colorado Rockies & Sierra Nevada. When not climbing, he is managing the Communications strategy at Visible Network Labs.