Peak(s):  Rosalie Pk  -  13,575 feet
"Epaulie"  -  13,530 feet
Epaulet Mtn  -  13,523 feet
Tahana Mtn - 11,980 feet
Kataka Mtn - 12,441 feet
Post Date:  12/02/2012
Date Climbed:   11/30/2012
Posted By:  dehrlich101
Additional Members:   tdawg012

 Tanglewood Creek - Mount Evans Wilderness     

Rosalie Peak 13575' - Co Rank 153
"Epaulie" 13530' - Co Rank 181
Epauliet Mountain 13523' - Unranked
Tahana Mountain 11980' - LOJ
Kataka Mountain 12441' - SP, LOJ

Date: Friday, November 30, 2012
Start time: 7:15 am
Summit Rosalie: 10:15 am
Summit "Epaulie": 11:15 am
Summit Epauliet Mountain: 11:40 am
Summit Tahana Mountain: 12:20 pm
Summit Kataka Mountain: 1:45 pm
End time: 4:15 pm
Elevation Gain: 5,875 feet
Milage: ~ 18 miles
Company: Tyler aka tdawg012

Resources -
Derek's TR - Welcoming Spring : Mount Evans Wilderness
Summit Post - East Ridge via Tanglewood Creek
Nat Geo Map #104

Rosalie Pk is named after Rosalie Bierstadt the wife of Albert Bierstadt; The famous 19th Century painter who Mount Bierstadt is named after. Mount Evans was originally called Mount Rosa after Rosalie but was later renamed after the Colorado Governor John Evans. Interested in more? Lots of info here

Tyler was able to get a day off work, and we decided to go for the Rosalie Group in the Mount Evans Wilderness from the Deer Creek Trailhead just outside of Pine Junction. We left Denver at 6:00 am, and arrived at the Trailhead at 7:00 am. The road to the trailhead is paved for most of the way, and then becomes dirt for the last mile. Any passenger car can easily drive it. From what I read on Summitpost, during the winter the road is usually plowed to the Deer Creek Campground, and a four-wheel drive vehicle can make it the rest of the way to the trailhead.

We started off down the Rosalie/Tanglewood Trail from the parking lot. There is a junction not far from the trailhead marked with the sign in picture #25. Stay right and continue on the Rosalie/Tanglewood Trail. Another mile up the trail you’ll reach another junction with the Rosalie Trail, again stay right on the Tanglewood Trail. Soon you’ll reach tree line where there is a grove of bristlecone pines just below the saddle of Rosalie and Pegmatite Points.

Bristlecone Pines



A cairn with a log marks the saddle, with several bandanas tied around it. Leave the trail and began ascending the east ridge of Rosalie. It is a simple hike up to the summit, and once on top you can see Mount Evans, Mount Bierstadt and the Sawtooth to the North.

Ridge to Rosalie

Marker on the saddle

Rosalie Summit, Mount Evans and Bierstadt in the background

Because of the cold wind we only stayed on Rosalie for an only a few minutes before continuing along the ridge to “Epaulie”. Once on the slope to “Epaulie” there are a few minor scrabbles up to the summit.



Tyler had already been on Epaulet Mountain once before and said that the view of Bierstadt, Sawtooth, and Evans were worth seeing from that point so we headed over to the unranked peak. It is definitely worth going the extra half-mile to Epaulet for the views of the valley and Evans/Bierstadt. We stayed on that summit for a while taking pictures and deciding on what to do with the rest of the day.

Mount Bierstadt and Mount Evans


Summit handstand

Originally we were going to go back the way we came and climb Pegmatite Points and Royal Mountain like Derek did in his report. Instead we decided to go for Tahana Mountain and Kataka Mountain, and then meet up with the Rosalie Trail to get back to the trailhead.



We traveled west along the ridge to Tahana Mountain, and then down into the valley. Once in the valley there are a lot of willows, and they were still holding snow but not much. We gained the East Ridge of Kataka and followed it to the broad summit.

Kataka Mountain from Tahana Mtn

Kataka from the Valley

Rosalie and company

Mount Logan

Summit Register



After taking a break for some food and water, we descended the slope back down into the valley and met up with the Rosalie Trail. We met another hiker with his dog back in the valley and talked with him for a little while, then started back down to the trailhead. There is an unmarked junction along this trail, which was not shown on the map. We decided to go right at the junction which eventually put us back at the first junction you come to on the way up. I believe this was the old Rosalie Trail which was rerouted to the other side of Deer Creek, if you decide to go left at the junction it should put you back on the Tanglewood Creek trail at the second junction.




Frozen in time



My GPS watch died after almost 8 hours, and 14 miles so that is why the GPX file does not have the last four or so miles of the trip. The whole route had very little snow, and there was some ice along the trail but can be easily done without micro spikes at this point. Thanks Derek for your excellent report on these mountains, it was very detailed and a good read before doing this group.

My GPS Tracks on Google Maps (made from a .GPX file upload):

Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):

  • Comments or Questions

Kataka!     12/02/2012 16:09
great spot man. Hard to believe from these pics that it is December in Colorado! Nice TR.


Nice!     12/02/2012 16:30
...looks like you got the hang of that new camera, good photo's.


Great TR!     12/02/2012 22:43
Looks like a very cool hike. I especially like Image #13 - it just seems like a sweet vantage point. Nice summit handstand, too!


Dry     12/03/2012 14:58
Amazing how dry it is. Cool loop, especially with the 12ers you guys added.

Mtnfiend and I did this exact same loop (sans 12ers) yesterday and I too lost juice in my GPS on the descent. We went right at that unmarked junction, and with a spotty usgs map and dead GPS, we wondered for a little bit if we were going in the right direction. Felt nice to pop out at that Tanglewood/Rosalie junction 100 yards from the car.

Great area up there, never knew Bierstadt could look that cool.

Did you guys, by any chance, check out that Hog Heaven BBQ afterwards right off 285/43 junction?

scott goldberg

Hog Heaven rocks!!!     01/24/2013 15:47
-great report, cool seeing Jennifer Roach on the register!

lord helmut...Hog Heaven is outstanding! the best sweet potato fries anywhere


Thanks!     12/03/2012 23:20
.. for the kind comments Lynx and gentlemen. Beautiful day in the hills, while I miss the snow.. Can't really complain about the trade off.

Lordhelmut - Glad you guys took the right instead of left! I was nice after the long day to see the car so close. Bierstadt did look pretty incredible from that side, kinda make me interested in repeating it via the east ridge. Roaches books says it is a classic with some solid class 3 scrabbles.. I don't think I've really seen any reports on here about that route. Hog Heaven was the plan for afterwards, but I had to get back into town. I've had it before at Sports Authority Field, was good then. I'm sure it would be even better after a day in the hills!


Wow     12/04/2012 19:03
Bierstadt looks like a best from that side. Great pics. Beautiful day.


Great day senor!     12/06/2012 00:00
Good bein up there with ya. Some snow is coming this weekend I think..

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