Hike to the high point of the Franklin Mountains! This is a nice, well graded trail for a little under a 4 mile one way trip up to the peak.
Enter the park on the west side of the mountains and pay your entrance fee for the Tom Mays Park, then continue on to the area labeled "Mundys Gap".
The trip to North Franklin Mountain utilizes 3 trails. First the West Cottonwood Spring trail, then the Mundys Gap trail, and finally the North Franklin Mountain trail. All three are well graded, signed, and easy to follow. The first 2/3 of a mile from the trailhead involves crossing over a whole field of ankle-buster sized rocks, but take your time and all will be well. Once you get up on the first ridge you will meet up with the Mundys Gap trail that splits off to the north, there is also a spur trail to the southeast that leads to the Cottonwood spring. Follow this around to about the 1.8 mile mark where you cross the pass and start to descend the east side of the ridge just a bit. You will come to a well signed junction on the trail, make a right for the North Franklin Mountain trail. Take this about 2 miles all the way to the peak following a few switchbacks, and eventually the ridgeline for the last half mile or so. The ridgeline portion of the trail returns to more of the ankle-buster rocks, but just for a short stretch.
There is a large CB antenna at the top, sweeping views of El Paso, Juarez, Fort Bliss military base and all the surrounding mountain ranges. It was remarkably windy the morning I did my hike. Windy conditions are most common here in the spring. Return the way you came, make sure you get out before 5 p.m. when they lock the gates.
Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.
Gate Policy: If a gate is closed upon arrival, leave it closed after you go through. If it is open, leave it open. Leaving a closed gate open may put cattle in danger. Closing an open gate may cut them off from water. Please be respectful, leave gates as found.
WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.
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