"To finish the moment, to find the journey's end in every step of the road, to live the greatest number of good hours, is wisdom." - Ralph Waldo Emerson
As with many mountains, there are many trails that lead to the Sri Pada summit as well. There are 6 known such paths have been documented. Many local hikers make a pact to themselves to complete all of these and to find new paths to the holy summit through undiscovered wilderness.
Here is a summary of the trails for your reference. Reliable elevation gains data are not available for some trails.
Ratnapura Palabathgala Trail
Kuruwita Erathna Trail
Hatton, Nallathanni trail
Deraniyagala,Udamaliboda (Ihala-Maliboda) Trail
Hapugastenna (The Dehenakanda – Mukku Watta) Trail
The most used and popular route is Hatton, Nallathanni route. If you're a foreigner this is probably the only route you'd have heard about.
In fact, there is nothing adventurous about this route and it is crowded to the brim. Many tourists use it because it's easier to get to Hatton and then Nallathanni from the hill country destinations like Kandy, Nuwara Eliya and Ella.
Moving forward to more interesting routes, Ratnapura -Palabathgala route is the next famous route among locals. This trail is used by people coming from south mostly since it is easier for them to get to Ratnapura. Even though the elevation gain is the highest, the trail is paved with stairs and hand railings for the most part to the ease of pilgrims. It is the oldest route as well and Kings said to have used this route to climb the holy mountain for over thousand years and hence the name "Raja Mawatha" (King's Road) is also used to identify this route.
Next most used route is Kuruwita-Erathna route which this article is about. Having serene footpaths through woods, stairs with railings, rocky ascends which makes your stomach turns; it can be considered a pleasant blend of the above two trails.