23 Mar, 2020

Day 7 – Eagle Rock

Written by: Russ

South Downs Way

Distance:

miles

Time:

hours

Elevation gain:

feet

Day 7 route overview

Form Montezuma Valley it’s a stunning trek through super-bloom meadows and rolling hills broken by forests and streams cutting through the landscape before arriving at Eagle Rock, the first major natural landmark on the Pacific Crest Trail. After Eagle Rock you continue to Warner Springs to stock up and pick up packages at the post office before heading back into the wild meadows and ascending back into the mountains to continue through the desert.

Elevation

Most of the day is easy on the knees through the meadows and forests, after warner springs it’s not long before you’re gaining elevation to head back into the desert hills.

Over the M3

A Broken Arrow

I left Montezuma Valley early. I had met some of the friendliest, loveliest people over the last couple of days and had the pleasure of camping with them back at Montezuma, but my gut told me that it would be better to hike alone from now on due to the growing COVID-19 situation and for the safety of the town’s folk along the route. So, I packed up before the others had woken up and said goodbye to Supertramp and told him I’d see them all in Idylwild in a few days time.

After being back on the trail for a few hours I came across another hiker/YouTuber named Broken Arrow. He was still continuing on and reassured me for my efforts. We walked together before the call of nature forced me off-trail for 10 minutes. I’d later catch up with Broken Arrow at one of the most spectacular rock formations we’d ever seen.

Over the M3
Over the M3

We made it to Eagle Rock!

The rock with its rightful name was one of the strangest yet wonderful rock formations I’d ever come across. Upon arrival, I was reminded of photographs taken by many hikers before me in stunning sunshine and high temperatures, just like the southern terminus, Eagle Rock was nothing like what I’d imagined from the photos. Cold temperatures and light, drizzly wind set the tone for the moments up at the rocks. The wide-open planes in the area were shrouded in cloud. I didn’t care, it was a monumental moment and felt like a huge achievement as did the southern terminus.

Moving on, I soon reached Warner Springs where my package I’d bounced back in Julian had arrived early. Instead of opening the box, I decided to bounce it ahead to Idylwild and stock up at the gas station which was still open in Warner Springs.

After Warner Springs I was back on the trail, walking through vast meadows in bloom. As the sun came out and I was walking through the forest, a rafter of wild turkeys was also making its way through the forest, displaying as they went. What an awesome sight!

Pressing on, I made my way back up into the hills for the final push of the day to camp. The campsite I had that night was one of the best on the trip.

Over the M3
Over the M3
Over the M3

Gallery

Overview

  • Views and vista 90% 90%
  • Difficulty 60% 60%
  • Elevation gain 80% 80%

Start time:

06:00

Camp time:

18:00

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