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Shady couloir keeps snow well into the summer.


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Map Key

1.8

Miles

2.9

KM

Ski Line

14,086' 4,293 m

High

10,973' 3,345 m

Low

0' 0 m

Up

3,113' 949 m

Down

33%

Avg Slope (18°)

50%

Max Slope (26°)
Type: Backcountry or Sidecountry

Overview

III D3 R2
A fun, easy intro to ski mountaineering with little to no avy danger during the spring season.

Description

Hit this thing well after the rest of the lines have melted. Good fun line, and depending how much you enjoy schlepping skis, you can get a few runs in a day.

Once at the top of the "body" of the Angel (the wide section of snow that starts at treeline), you'll have a choice to make. Generally, the best option is to follow the "right arm" of the Angel (climber's right, see photos for details), which follows Mt. Shavano's east ridge. When the conditions are right, this route can hold snow all the way to the summit, and is also the most likely route for a summit ski.

The "head" of the Angel goes straight up the drainage aiming for the summit, but often dries up just short. This means having to boot up a talus slope for a few hundred feet, depending on the year.

The "left arm" will often hold snow all the way to Shavano's south ridge, but from there it's a toss-up. This choice leaves a lot of vertical gain to the summit, but in the right season might have a chance of providing a summit ski.

The general recommendation is to follow the Angel's "right arm," but there are times when the other two options are better. I climbed the "left arm" my first time on Shavano and descended the "right arm," sticking to what I'd heard. The snow was definitely better on the south ridge, leaving me with core shots and bent edges upon getting back to the "body." Choose wisely!

Access from Eastern Shavano Trailhead. See this link for more photos and details.

Contacts

Shared By:

Thomas Beatty

Trail Ratings

  3.7 from 3 votes

#563

Overall
  3.7 from 3 votes
5 Star
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4 Star
67%
3 Star
33%
2 Star
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1 Star
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Ski Line Rankings

#224

in Colorado

#563

Overall
36 Views Last Month
2,293 Since Nov 19, 2021
Intermediate Intermediate

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Photos

Above treeline on the winter approach to the Angel of Shavano, looking at the rest of the route (Angel is center).
Mar 6, 2023 near Alpine , CO
At the top of the body, just after the steepest section. Three options are available to ascend.
Nov 24, 2021 near Alpine , CO
Further down the line looking back.
Mar 6, 2023 near Alpine , CO
Fresh turns on bad snow in the Angel.
Mar 6, 2023 near Alpine , CO
The "body" of the Angel of Shavano with some fresh corn turns on it!
Nov 24, 2021 near Alpine , CO
Looking back at the skin up through the trees, just above treeline.
Mar 6, 2023 near Alpine , CO

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Mar 4, 2023
Jake Albright
Apr 14, 2019
Jeff McGowan
May 30, 2013
Regina Primavera
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