December 24, 2000 in South
Dan and I decided to hike this short and sweet peak located on the southern edge of the Gore Range as a conditioning hike for our upcoming trip to Cotopaxi in Ecuador. We left Denver early one Saturday morning in December and drove to Vail Pass on I-70 where we began the hike. The day was perfectly clear but the area had recently received a lot of snowfall so we brought our snowshoes.
There’s a big trail leaving the north side of Vail Pass heading north and slightly west. The trail emerges over a little ridge into a broad valley. We hiked along the valley for a while and then made our choice of wooded gullies to head up in order to gain the ridge on Uneva.
The snow was in great shape and we had no trouble getting up to the ridge. We also picked a great route. Although you can’t see Uneva from Vail Pass or the open valley, if you’ve studied the map, you ought to be able to pick the correct gully to go up. After we broke out of tree line, the snow became hardened by the wind. This made the hiking a lot easier because we didn’t have to slog through deep snow. Also, because of the hard snow, there was no danger of avalanche. Eventually, we arrived on the ridge where we were greeted with this view of Uneva Peak (right). Uneva is the peak on the far right. Although the first peak looks to be a lot of unecessary up and down, but actually, you only descend maybe 50 feet at most before you start heading up Uneva.
The top of Uneva was pretty cold. We only stayed for maybe 45 minutes. From here we had commanding views all around. Uneva is a great peak for views as it has 360 degrees of unobstructed views. To the north (left) you can see the southern peaks of the main section of the Gore Range. In this photo, you can see Willow Peak, East Thorn, Red Peak, and Demming Mountain.
Uneva is a great winter hike because it is fairly short and doesn’t involve a lot of elevation. It’s probably about 5 miles round trip with 2000 feet of elevation.