Hike: Here and There!
Last updated 3/15/2022 at 10:57am
After relatively cool weather, the barometer is now on the rise so time to get those hiking boots on and enjoy the beautiful Borrego climate.
The coordinators of the Anza-Borrego Desert State Park have once again opened their doors to a series of activities for members and newcomers.
Exploring and understanding the magic of this unique area and what it has to offer is full of surprises and the team have aptly provided over and beyond our expectations.
The February hike to the Scissors Crossing and a short introductory section of the PCT trail was led by Jamie Purinton. With her husband Tony, this enthusiastic combination are the founders of "Hike it Off" a magazine that shares the good vibes and healing energy of hiking and inspiring deep-rooted connections to the outdoors.
Following S-3 to Tamarisk Grove Camp Ground and connecting to S-78, the PCT carpark is on the right. Starting with a steep short climb and heading north to Barrel Springs the highest elevation of this section is 3,400 feet with a total distance of 20 miles. For the keen hikers the complete walk to Barrel Springs can take an average time of seven hours. For the elite athletes it is reduced down to a third of that time. The trail reflects just how vast this area is and basically follows alongside S-2. Once a thriving grazing area for cattle, ranchers built homesteads and were "royalty" of the range. Over time the natural habitat changed and took its toll on financial gain. Now it is the plants across the terrain that dominate the area and include Aloe Vera, Yuccas and the forever flowering Brittlebush. Tumbleweed at the mercy of the wind has uncertain origins and unknown destinations stops here and there along the trail.
For the keen birders, a chorus of bird song is a reminder that spring is in the air. Perhaps it was a Golden Eagle spotted along the way looking for an early lunch, not sure! This migratory and majestic animal can be identified by its lustrous gold feathers and inhabits rugged portions of the desert and it met all the features that became an interesting topic of conversation with Tony.
From Barrel Springs and continuing on through a series of gates, the PCT meanders northwards through oak woodlands where connecting with nature and your inner thoughts becomes a natural phenomenon. Quietness and solitude is a recipe for the many pilgrims that take on the challenge of the PCT. This trail is part of the "Triple Crown of Hiking" in the United States and was conceived in 1934, receiving official recognition in 1968. The total distance is 2,650 miles. People from all walks of life take on the challenge of the PCT and most travelers are on a mission to "achieve" for whatever reason and gain satisfaction.