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Cerro Ena

San José

By: Qué Buen Lugar

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We went to Cerro Ena, which is one of the most beautiful hills, 3,000 meters above sea level in Costa Rica, located in San Jerónimo de Pérez Zeledón.

How to get there: Take Route 2 towards Pérez Zeledón, after crossing the river continue for about 45 minutes more towards San Jerónimo de PZ until you reach the center of operations of ATURENA.


Distance: 25 km total

Difficulty: Hard

Accessibility: Not accessible

What to bring: Basic thermal clothing, pair of thick socks, winter sweater, gloves, hat, waterproof jacket, hiking or trail shoes, headlight, long pants, cap, sunscreen, chapstick, first aid kit and an excellent attitude.

Vehicle: Automobile

Parking: Yes

Pets: No

Camping: No

Contact: ATURENA 8374 3443
Accommodation Ecos del Chirripó: 7200 3856


Cost: Group of 5-6 people 90,000 per person (1 night with guide and food)
To send things up 2,300 colones / kg

Day 0

We left at noon from San José to arrive before 4 pm to the town of San Jerónimo in Pérez Zeledón, specifically to the offices of ATURENA. We got registered here and also dropped off the packages we wanted the carriers to take to the peak.

Then we went to the Ecos del Chirripó lodge, where we had a tasty dinner and rested in order to get ready for the 3am hike the next morning..

Day 1

We started walking at early morning, so to not delay we asked for breakfast to-go and started our walk. The first km was in the dark, and around kilometer 3 the sun came out, illuminating the mountain in front of us as we walked through a pasture full of flowers “santalucias”.

After the paddock we reached the point called the tiger stone, from this point you enter the forest again and continue climbing for a couple of kilometers until you reach the cabin just halfway. Here we have breakfast with pinto, eggs and cheese wrapped in banana leaf. Since we have gotten up really early we ended up eating and taking a nap in the grass for about 40 minutes before continuing.

We woke up from the nap and continued walking for 6 more kilometers without stopping until we reached the lodge in Cerro Ena, where we were greeted with a chicken soup, perfect to warm up a little.

The hostel is made of wood, has a dining room, bathrooms and space for almost 25 people. We were more than 3000 meters above sea level, so you have to be well prepared for the cold. Another important point is that the weather changes very fast and you have to take advantage of the nice weather when it happens.

After lunch we decided to go for a walk to the path of the “Paso de los Indios”, we walked a little more than 25 minutes. Although it was cloudy we stayed for a while until it cleared and we managed to see a large part of the Talamanca mountain range until it became cloudy again so we went to another spot to wait for the sunset.

The sunset was almost invisible because of the fog that covered almost everything, besides the wind was seriously strong so we decided to go back to the lodge for dinner and rest.

Day 2

We got up at 4am to see the sunrise on the top of Cerro Ena which is half an hour from the lodge. After 5 in the morning the sky began to clear and we managed to see the Pacific Ocean on the horizon, then after a while we could see the first rays of sun that made our morning joyful.

With the light of day we continued our walk along the path of bogs, the bogs are very important highland wetlands for the ecosystem since they slowly conserve and filter the water that nourishes springs of water down the mountain.

Then we returned to the lodge to get our things ready, deliver packages to the porters and have a full breakfast to get back down to San Jerónimo.

The descent is about 3 hours and the last kms get tough so it’s best to not do them so late in the day.

Finally I recommend that you get into the river that is at km 0, it’s super refreshing and will help deflate the muscles since it’s quite cold.


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