Owens Lake and Olancha Peak from Cerro Gordo Peak
Cerro Gordo Peak is the southern most peak in the Inyo Mountains
. It is easily accessible from the Cerro Gordo area. Cerro Gordo (Spanish for "Fat Hill") was a well known silver and zinc mining boom town in the 19th and early 20th century. Most of the town is a ghost town now with a few residents. The remains of the mining operation are still around and above the town site.
This is a short easy hike to a great viewpoint. To the west is the magnificient eastern scarp of the High Sierra. To the north the crest of the Inyo Range extends almost 40 miles to Waucoba Mountain
. The northeastern view looks down on Saline Valley, Ubehebe Peak
, and Racetrack Valley. Beyond these are the higher northern ranges of Death Valley National Park
. Southeast is the Panamint
and Argus Ranges and to the southwest is the vast panorama of Owens Lake topped off by hulking Olancha Peak
which dominates the eastern scarp of the Southern Sierra
East from Cerro Gordo Peak
From a few miles south of Lone Pine on Hwy. 395 take Hwy. 136 east southeast 12.6 miles to Keeler. A short distance south of Keeler is a signed dirt road going east up to Cerro Gordo. High clearance 2 wheel drive is recomended but although the road gets pretty steep in places it is well graded. Take the road 7.5 miles up to the town site.
Hardrockjohn has requested you please check in with Bob or John at the town site
. Use the switchback road past the microwave towers. They will be happy to show you the way and tell you about the town.
The route takes the switchback road going up to the saddle between Cerro Gordo Peak and a radio facility peak just south of the town. Go northeast at the saddle and hike the south slope
to the summit.
High Sierra from Cerro Gordo areaBe sure to check in at the town site
so you know the private property area. Folks live there year 'round.
There are no permits or restrictions on Bureau of Land Management property.
Cerro Gordo town site
There are no established campsites in the area.
There are numerous pullouts along the lower part of the Cerro Gordo road.
Current weather conditions
Saline Valley from Cerro Gordo Peak
For current weather conditions in Keeler click here
Further reading on hiking desert peaks
Racetrack Valley from Cerro Gordo PeakDesert Summits
by Andy Zdon
hardrockjohn - Jun 15, 2010 4:24 pm - Hasn't votedCerro Gordo
Please don't hike from the saddle to Cerro Gordo Peak. It is PRIVATE PROPERTY not BLM. Check in with Bob or John at the town site, then follow the only legal and safe way to reach the summet. Use the swichback road past the microwave towers. We will be happy to show you the way and tell you about our town, it covers hundreds of acres, not just the few buildings you see. Thank you, Hardrock John
Noondueler - Jun 15, 2010 8:21 pm - Hasn't votedRe: Cerro Gordo
Thanks hardrockjohn I'll update the directions to the peak to take that into account. ND
Teresa Gergen - Jun 24, 2017 5:18 pm - Hasn't votedUpdated info
At the townsite, they now want you to sign a liability waiver, and pay a $10 fee per person.
T. White - Sep 28, 2018 11:01 am - Hasn't votedRe: Updated info
Confirmed, per the mine's new website: http://cerrogordomines.com/ "All visitors must check in with our caretaker, sign a liability waiver and pay for admission before exploring the town."