On a clear day, never-ending views extending to Vieques and Culebra reward hikers who tackle the almost 1500ft of elevation gain on this trail. This is the main event for most hikers, taking you to the top of El Yunque (3496ft) in 1½ hours or longer. It starts opposite the Palo Colorado Information Center.
The 3.8km trail is mostly paved or maintained gravel as you ascend past mountain palm trees and waterfalls to the cloud forest (with its stunted or 'dwarf' trees) to the observation deck, which is surrounded by microwave communication towers that transmit to the islands of Culebra and Vieques. If you want a rock scramble from here, take Los Picachos Trail (0.17 miles) to another old observation tower and feel as if you have crested a tropical Everest. You can return via a different route by descending down a service road to the Mt Britton Trail and then down a dirt track to Rte 191 and back to your starting point.