West Spanish Peak

La Veta, Colorado 81055

West Spanish Peak

West Spanish Peak Professional Guide

Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook

"This is an easy hike and scramble to a beautiful summit.

At Cordova Pass, turn left (north) onto Trail 1324 as it starts off through forest then open meadows along a gentle ridge. Just before the trail begins to climb, it joins the ridge and offers distant views north over the Cucharas River valley. As the trail begins to steepen, it meets the Apishapa Trail, which descends to the right. Follow the switchbacks and hike up through the thinning trees and past some impressive bristlecone pines just below the tree line to the first open views of West Spanish Peak above. Continue just to the right (south) of the ridge and follow a rough and sometimes loose trail to the summit.

The trail can be hard to follow, but it generally stays to the right (south) of the prominent ridge before it traverses to the right (east) across the upper slopes just below the false summit. From the false summit, hike the last rocky ridge to the top and enjoy the views of the Cucharas River valley."

More West Spanish Peak Professional Guides

Detailed Trail Descriptions from Our Guidebooks

Best Summit Hikes in Colorado (Wilderness Press)
James Dziezynski
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"The contrast between the enormous Spanish Peaks and the surrounding farmland is striking. These stand-alone mountains dominate the southern landscape and offer good climbs."
100 Classic Hikes in Colorado (The Mountaineers Books)
Scott S. Warren
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"Standing as true sentinels along the southeast edge of Colorado’s mountain province, the Spanish Peaks have long served as important landmarks for all who pass within sight of them. The Indians called them Huajatolla, or “Breasts of the World.” Early Spanish explorers used them as easily identifiable landmarks on their conquest’s northern frontier. Today they provide modern-day motorists along I-25 with one of the most stunning vistas in the state. Anyone who has driven by these sharply rising mountains and envisioned standing on the summit may be shocked to know that the taller of the two peaks, 13,626-foot West Spanish Peak, is accessible via a short hike."

West Spanish Peak Trip Reports

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First 2.5 miles pretty easy and it took about 1.5 hours. This will take you right to the timber line and then the rest of the hike is switchbacks up the west side of the peak. It is all rock and exposed. We got caught in a thunderstorm right at the first switch back so we turned around quickly. Watch the weather closely as there is no cover until you get back to treeline. Beautiful views and we will get back there to get to top soon!
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FR415 was closed 4.5 miles from Cucharas pass turnoff.
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This is not a trail for a beginner. this mountain changes constantly. Best time to climb is early AM, if the weather is good, and try to be down off the mountain by early afternoon befor the weather changes. The mountain can be cruel and unforgiving. The view from the top is well worth the rough hike. Not for everyone.

West Spanish Peak Photos

Trail Information

La Veta
Nearby City
2,500 feet
Elevation Gain
Trail Type
Moderate to Difficult
Skill Level
Day hike or backpack
Best March to December
11,100 feet
Trailhead Elevation
13,626 feet
Top Elevation
Spanish Peaks Wilderness, San Isabel National Forest
Local Contacts
USGS Spanish Peaks, Cucharas Pass, Herlick Canyon
Local Maps

Trail Log