Ascent of Cerro de La Cruz on 2009-01-25

Climber: Ben Lostracco

Others in Party:Loner - My 23rd visit to this Cerro
Date:Sunday, January 25, 2009
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Cerro de La Cruz
    Elevation:199 m / 656 ft

Ascent Trip Report

Easy popular hike in the center of town. I make a habit of visiting the summit everytime we are in Manzanillo. Today is my 23rd visit to this summit. I thought best to add some hiking information for those requiring same.
Don't confuse this peak with the peak of the same name, East of here in El Colomo.

CERRO DE LA CRUZ is located towards the North end and is the highest point of the North-South mountain range that forms the West end of the Laguna de Cuyutlan in Manzanillo, and the right (East) side of the mouth of Bahia de Manzanillo, gateway to Mexico's largest West coast commercial Port. The 4 kilometer long North-South range descends towards the South to a very low elevation before ascending again to Faro de Campos (Lighthouse) built at the very South end of this range, high above the vertical cliffs. The point of interest furthest North on this range is Mirador El Vigia.
A water channel entrance, replenishing the Laguna de Cuyutlan, was dug-out at its lowest elevation (at the South-West end of the Laguna) in the nineteen eighties as part of the Termoelectrica C.F.E. Power Plant project. A walk out to its inlet makes for an interesting outing and depending on the tide the water will either be flowing in or out of the Laguna.
The whole length of the ridge is open with outstanding views of the area (Bahia, the huge commercial Port, Manzanillo's historic downtown and the Laguna de Cuyutlan). Rough dirt roads and trails exist from the ridge down to the three small Playa's on the West side of the range, they receive very little attention. The dirt roads cut-out along the ridge and on the West side of the range are evidence of future commercial development (already started).

There are 3 main routes that will take you from downtown to the summit - Calle M Galindo, Calle Nicolas Bravo and Calle 27 Octubre, all described here below.

ROUTE CALLE M GALINDO - Walk to the South-West corner of the Jardin Alvaro Obregon and follow Calle Carrillo Puerto South for 5 blocks to Calle M Galindo. Turn right (West) and climb the stairs, crossing a street. At first junction ignore the narrow stairs to the left and follow the main stairway to the right as it winds and climbs (West) to above the homes. Continue on the walkway as it makes a long left bend (around a small depression) and again winds and climbs, coming out to a stone paved road ascending steeply right to the Antenna Station (located on the ridge North and below the Cerro de La Cruz at elev. 450 feet - a little used trail behind the Antenna Station follows the ridge and ascends to La Cruz).
A left at this stone paved road descends to the route coming up from Calle Nicolas Bravo (you are able to see it 30-40 meters away) or to the route coming up from Calle 27 Octubre - both routes are described below.
Turn right up the steep stone road for about 40 meters to an obvious trail to the left. Follow the well used trail as it opens up with great views to the East, over downtown Manzanillo and the Laguna, before arriving at a Y junction - both routes (left or right) lead to the summit for a possible loop hike. The right route is steeper and slippier requiring more hand work and therefore a safer climbing route, if one chooses to do a loop hike.
(a)Left Route - The trail traverses and climbs to the main ridge(only a short section just prior to the ridge is steep and rocky requiring hand work). Turn right (North) to the foot of a rough rock staircase built into the ridge. Climb the approx 220 steps to the summit.
(b)Right Route - The trail climbs gradually and traverses in a northerly direction before winding and climbing steeply West to the summit. Ther are 3 or 4 places requiring handwork.

ROUTE CALLE NICOLAS BRAVO - Walk to the South-West corner of the Jardin Alvaro Obregon and follow Calle Carrillo Puerto S for 6 blocks (1 block past Calle M Galindo) to Calle Nicolas Bravo. Turn right (West) and after one short block start to climb stairs/walkway straight ahead. At first Y junction a ramp traverses left uphill and a narrow stairway leads straight ahead. Take the ramp to the left for a short distance where a stairway continues to the right, climbing and winding its way thru the hillside homes in different directions. Cresting on a ridge where a ramp to the right (West) leads to the stone paved road ascending to the right. Follow this road uphill for 70-80 meters to the trail described above.

ROUTE CALLE 27 OCTUBRE - From Calle Nicolas Bravo continue South on Calle Carrillo Puerto for about 150 meters to a main circle intersection. Take the street right, Avenida Joel Montes Camarena, for a short distance to the first street right, Calle 27 Octubre (it leads to the Antenna Station). Follow this stone paved road as it climbs steeply and winds its way past the last home on the right and the incoming ramp, talked about in Route Calle Nicolas Bravo (above).

Once on the main ridge there are numerous hiking possibilities.
-- Follow the main ridge South for about 3 km, descending to the Laguna's water channel, walk or bus back to downtown.
-- Numerous roads and trails along the main ridge go down the W side to the ocean level, explore a number of little used beaches.
-- A number of trails along the main ridge drop down the East side to the main road that leads back to downtown.
-- A rough trail/herd path drops north to the Antenna Communication Towers and on to Mirador El Vigia for a loop hike starting at the Jardin Alvaro Obregon, see Mirador El Vigia for the description of this route.

Summary Total Data
    Elevation Gain:196 m / 646 ft
    Distance:4 km / 2.5 mi
    Route:manzanillo/E stairs&trail to ridge/summit
    Trailhead:downtown Manzanillo, Jardin Alvaro Obregon  3 m / 10 ft
    Route Conditions:
Road Hike, Maintained Trail

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