This is an awesome hike but there are some things you need to know. First, entry is controlled and you have to have a guide. The good news is that there are guides on site and the don't cost a lot. The bad news is that they are usually teens who are mainly there to legitimize the outing. You will likely have an armed guard at the front and one at the back but that is just they way of life in El Salvador so get used to it. The guide will likely take off on a tear but don't feel that you have to keep up or you will regret it. Take your time. The guard will bring up the rear and they are in no hurry. Take lots of water and a camera and maybe some trail mix or energy bars because it is a long steady climb and it will be hot and you will burn some serious energy. The trail is safe and reasonable but watch your footing once you get out of the tree line. There are lots of loose rocks but most drop-offs are fenced but not all.
The view is amazing and the vegetation lush and thick to start and then big and exotic towards the top and then it is fully barren.
Once you get to the top the guide will likely be long gone and on their way down and the guards will likely disappear too. If you are a straggler don't worry as the path is well marked and you will have no trouble taking your time coming down and enjoying the view. Just don't linger too long if you have a ride to catch. Take lots of pictures and pick a time when the cloud cover is not too low or if it is raining. (We went up in a thunder storm and it was a bit intense). Take several shots at the top to stitch into a panoramic photo.
Note: There are shortcuts between the switchbacks on the way up but resist the temptation to take them as they can be torturous and not worth the risk. There are washrooms at the base but nothing going up except for dense bush near the bottom. The park at the lower levels before you enter the trail is very nice and there are rental cabins if you want to make a day of it but no refreshments except for special occasions so take your own. There are trails in the park and spectacular views and old gardens and orchards to explore. Well worth the stop.
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