Start: Mile 0 Southern Terminus
End: Mile 20 Lake Morena
Total PCT Miles: 20
We were up this morning by 5:15 am – excited and anxious at the same time. Since our plan was to hike from the border back to Lake Morena, our packs were loaded minimally with only 4+ liters of water each, snacks and lunch. After a cup of coffee and a bowl of granola with blueberries we jumped into Mark’s car and headed for the Southern Terminus of the Pacific Crest Trail. It was chilly this morning, about 38 degrees, so we had our down jackets and fleece beenies on. After a 15 minute drive we arrived at the monument. It was 6:35 and we were the first hikers to arrive. We were greeted by the trail host – he is a volunteer and former PCT thru-hiker who greets all hikers and reviews “Leave No Trace” etiquette as well and answers any last minutes questions. After taking all the customary photographs at the official Southern Terminus monument we gave Mark a big hug and off we went. It was a beautiful morning – clear skies and a little cool but that makes for great hiking weather. Soon we passed the Mile 1 marker – only 2549 miles to go! The rest of the day was uneventful. We saw a few other PCT hikers who had also started their hike this morning. We saw three deer, one snake (not a rattlesnake), and too many rabbits and lizards to count. We also saw a few Border Patrol SUV’s patrolling the area. We stopped and had lunch (PB&J) at Mile 15.5 and then finished the day with a 1000 foot climb up and over and then down to Lake Morena.If you look closely you can see the switchbacks. Once back at the campground, we were able to take a shower and then head back to our little cabin for grilled hamburgers, baked beans, macaroni salad and a little wine.
The real hiking starts tomorrow with fully loaded packs. Thanks for reading.