March 30, 2018
Last night was spent on the edge of the vast grassy swath of Warner Springs Meadows. We could see for miles across the undulating grasslands. This morning, rising sunbeams gleamed on piles of white granitic rocks a half mile away. Eagle Rocks seemed to be the perfect place for breakfast!
When we reached this viewpoint, we climbed up on the stone “eagle’s” shoulder and sat, soaking in the early morning sunshine. As we quietly ate breakfast, small birds resumed their daily schedule. We watched, enchanted, as a rock wren lit upon a tall boulder, doing it’s characteristic bobbing motion. A lark sparrow from atop another stone let out a trill, throat swelling, beak tilted towards the sky. Meadow larks gave their liquid bubbling song from all around. We were surrounded by music!
Finishing breakfast, we reluctantly climbed down. At the base of the rocks, a friendly hiker named Edgar took our picture. Then we slowly headed towards the town of Warner Springs, still enjoying the symphony of bird song!
We met several day hikers headed towards Eagle Rocks. One group stopped to talk, asking the usual questions. “Are you hiking the whole PCT?” “When did you start?” “Where will you finish?”
One woman asked a surprising question. “What are you going to do about Easter while you are on the trail?”
I hesitated a moment, my thoughts going back to this morning. “Sometimes on the trail, one must take special occasions when they happen. This morning, Eagle Rocks felt like Easter! It was so beautiful, with incredible bird song. What an affirmation of life! And after all, isn’t that what Easter is about? Celebrating the triumph of love and the renewal of life.”
The lady smiled, and the group hiked on, heading to their own life-affirming experience.
Just a few miles north of Eagle Rocks is the small town of Warner Springs. Mid-morning found us following signs directing PCT hikers to the community center. This place is a hiker oasis, completely run by volunteers. Amenities include charging stations for cell phones, hiker food for sale, clean restrooms, shady tent sites, and private outdoor cubicals for taking bucket showers! A volunteer can sometimes give rides to the post office, saving tired hikers two miles of walking.
The volunteers here use the proceeds from their sales to fund educational opportunities for the people in this small community. Talk about a life-affirming purpose!
As we regretfully left this haven, the trail took us along Agua Caliente Creek. Huge oaks gave welcoming shade in the hot afternoon. Bird song entertained us. Water loving flowers brightened the hike. It seemed that every part of this day gave an affirmation of life!