This post isn’t necessarily about an adventurous trip as it is about my go-to, little hike by Millerton Lake called Pincushion Peak (only 3 miles round-trip). There is a trailhead to this peak from inside Millerton Lake but if you want to bypass the $10 entrance fee, these are the directions from the back road (via Sky Harbor Road) by Table Mountain Casino.
I get asked ALL the time how to find this trailhead so here are the directions:
-Take Friant Road to Sky Harbor Road (past Millerton Lake, near Table Mountain Casino)
-Left on Sky Harbor Road
-Drive for about 3.6 miles until you reach this broken down cattle chute. Park here.
–There is a swinging gate. Go through & take the trail uphill to your immediate left.
-You’ll end up coming to a junction to go left or right. (Left will go back down to the road via a fire service road) –> Take the right UP AND UP to the top of the hill.
-At the top of this steep hill, you’ll reach an orange pole which, again, divides the trail. Go left to reach the peak.
Best season to go: I prefer to go around spring or fall when the grass is green and the flowers are blooming. It’s the PRETTIEST. I hate summer on this trail: it’s blazing hot, there’s no shade and it’s ugly, brown and dead. However, this trail is open year-round.
Best time to go: My ABSOLUTE favorite time is to get to the trailhead and start my hike about 2hrs before sunset (Google sunset times for Millerton Lake for accurate timing). It’s STUNNING and the colors are to-die-for!
And let’s be real for a sec, I only hike for views. I don’t hike for fun, although it may seeeeem that way. If the trail itself isn’t pretty or I don’t end up with a stunning view as the end-game, I will be a miserable little bi-, uhh, I mean, baby the entire time. You want to hear someone whine? Take me on an ugly/boring hike where I have to work hard without any eye candy.
Sunset at the peak during Spring season
What to bring:
-LOTS of water (especially if it’s still warm when you are hiking because the first 1.5 miles is STRAIGHT UPHILL).
-A blanket (to sit on at the peak & enjoy the views)
-A nice cold brewski 🙂
*Side note, I do bring my dog…as do others on this trail. I am not completely sure if it is dog-friendly but there are no signs denoting otherwise. However, I do know that the trailhead signage from inside Millerton Lake says no dogs allowed. Not many of the trails inside Millerton allow dogs (not that it stops anybody from bringing their fur babies).
*Second side note: watch out for cow patties. This IS an active cow pasture.
Overcast sunset at Pincushion Peak with my favorite trail dog, Baloo.
Enjoy! Let me know how you like this trail!!!