The trailhead (7500') is at El Porvenir Campground. There is a parking lot at the entrance to the campground. Walk towards the campground along the road and cross the bridge. The trailhead is on the left across from the campground pay station. Use trail #223.
The trail begins climbing immediately through tall conifer. At about 1/4 mile, there is a signed fork in the trail where you go left. In about a half mile two roads come into view. Stay left and hike along an old jeep road for about 100 yards. There is a sign directing you to the right, away from the road. The next mile and a half gradually get steeper culminating into interminable switchbacks up the canyon wall. At 3.5 miles, the switchbacks end with a fantastic view to the left. The trail makes a turn to the right and climbs about 50 yds to Hermit Spring. Good water is available at Hermit Spring. No camping near the spring. At the spring, the trail forks and makes a loop around the entire summit plateau. Take either fork. The right fork is the shortest, but steepest to the summit. The left is a little longer, but easier. If you take the left fork, the trail forks again after a short distance. Stay right to avoid descending down the north side of the mountain. Taking the right fork at Hermit Spring, you will see crosses planted in the ground at several places along the trail. Please to not disturb them. The hermit cave is also on the right fork on the southeastern edge of the summit. The trail remains in the trees until almost to the edge of the summit plateau. Distance to summit at 10,212' : 4 miles and 2700' elevation gain.
Having lunch on the eastern edge of the summit plateau is a memorable experience.......so don't forget your lunch!
Otherwise, bring standard dayhike gear including rain gear, food, water, and a camera.
My personal recommendation is to overnight on the summit plateau. It's worth it to haul your overnight gear and see the sunrise from the eastern edge of the summit.
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