We did this hike on May 30, 2015. Present company was Curtis, Chris, Sandy and I.
This hike starts from the upper hot springs parking lot. Right from the start, it was a steep climb. Me being a bit hung over from the night before, I knew this was going to be a great hike…
It’s approximstely 5.5km of switch backs which climb pretty steep in sections. At the halfway point, there is a fork: continue up to the summit or go to waterfalls. The waterfalls are a nice, quick, side trip. It was foggy and misty so it added a layer of mystique to the hike.
We reached the top in about 2 hours. This is definately a 3 hour hike round trip. There is a nice (but expensive) restaurant and gifts hope. If it’s nice out, I suggest doing the boardwalk up to the summit and seeing the Cosmic Ray Station. The view is spectacular…. Almost cosmic ;). The station was built as a research post to measure cosmic rays that fall through the atmosphere. The history behind it was fascinating.
We made our descent rather quickly and net quite a few people on their way up. It’s a very popular hike so if you want to avoid people, go early early morning.
After the hike, we took a dip in the hot springs. It was much needed.
Nice quick hike for those looking to something in the morning before brunch.