APRIL 23, 2016 – WARNER SPRINGS, (San Diego County – PCT)

A long string of caches and pictures of vast grasslands on the PCT were too much to resist. To prepare for my visit I posted logistical questions on Facebook. Orange County cacher ThatsRoxie responded and agreed to a car shuttle. Roxie arrived at the Warner Springs Community Resource Center first and set up for car camping. Two hours later I checked in, made a donation and tried to set up my tent for the overnight stay. A slight breeze repeatedly knocked down my efforts until Roxie suggested assembly in the windless space between our 2 vehicles. d’OH! It worked! We carried the assembled tent to the end of the lot where it was easy to stake down. Then we found a few caches before dark. Ask me offline about the bathroom & shower situation.
041916_00_tent
In the morning we drove 15 minutes to the southern trailhead at Barrel Springs. Unfortunately the cache there was stuck out of reach #11 Alternate Desert Route (GC4RKN0).
041916_01_barrel
We crossed the street N onto the PCT. The first mile was a gradual but steady uphill and the view was the same as what I’m used to seeing near home.
041916_02_unimpressive
Beetle porn!!
041916_03_beetles
We gazed down at what was ahead.
041916_04_grassland1
ThatsRoxie’s geodog MissVivian carried her own water and bowl. Later she had to wear a cooling suit. Even then she overheated.
041916_05_geodog
Even without a GPSr it’d be hard to get lost. Here’s ThatsRoxie and MissVivian.
041916_06_thatsroxane
I visited a spot I’d seen in many PCT blogs and videos.
041916_07_OLdweeb
The caches were easy finds. Several thousand PCT thru hikers will obliviously pass them all.
041916_07a_cache
The trail skirted a riparian area with lots of caches. Somewhere inside we split up for the heat-ailing MissVivian. Roxie & MissVivian went ahead to complete the trail without caching. I continued hiking at a slower pace, talking with passing thru hikers, caching and skipping those that were uphill or more than 50’ off trail.
041916_08_scrubland
The trail descended back into the grasslands. Caches here were sometimes in random open spots 20’-50’ off trail. Perfect coordinates allowed me to find those. I reached them only because the foxtails were still green and attached. A month from now cachers will need gaiters.
041916_09_forever
Unlike the Eagle Rocks in Topanga State Park and near Glendale, the one 3 miles S of Warner Springs actually looks like an eagle. I DNF’d the cache there, Eagle Rock (GCZFME) because a group arrived to take pictures and I didn’t want to be in their way.
041916_10_eagle
The final mile was through another riparian area, alongside a running stream.
041916_11_riparian
Most caches here were small tins hidden in burned out downed trees. The rest were bison tubes or other tree hangers.
041916_12_cache
At about 9 ½ miles I reached the gate across the street from my tent where ThatsRoxie was waiting to drive me to retrieve my vehicle.
041916_13_gate
Instead of following my original plan to camp another night and then cache N the next day, I packed up and drove to San Diego for 2 days of bike caching.

I refuse to skimp on gear. Except for the windblown tent everything functioned perfectly.
Tent: Big Agnes – Copper Spur UL1 mtnGLO
Sleeping bag: Western Mountaineering – Alder
Daypack: Marmot – Ultra Kompressor 22
Trekking Poles : Black Diamond – Trail Pro Shock
Camp stove: Snow Peak – Litemax
Headlamp: Princtontec VIZZ
GPS: Garmin Oregon 550T (discontinued)

Advertisements

One Response to APRIL 23, 2016 – WARNER SPRINGS, (San Diego County – PCT)

  1. webfoot5 says:

    I shall have to check this out. Looks like it was a good caching hike all the way around.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: