Bano de Oro Trail
|Don't come with a prospector's gleam for gold.|
Length: 0.25 miles. Time: 30 minutes if you connect with the El Yunque trail for a one mile walk that will loop you back to the Palo Colorado visitor center. Difficulty: 1. Trailhead: At km. 12, just south of the visitor center parking lot.
Almost immediately you will arrive at an old concrete swimming pool built in the 1930s by the CCC. It was named Bano de Oro, or "band of gold," apparently comes from the fact that a gold ring or something shiny was once found in the swimming pool, which has been closed for decades.
Continuing, you'll also see old stone tanks. They were once used in an attempt to introduce trout, a cold water species, into the rain forest. It failed.
Despite all the man-made structures, this still is a scenic trail, with several stream crossings in the palm forest. When you reach El Yunque trail, go right to return to the parking lot. Go left and you're on the way to El Yunque peak.