The Coast to Crest trail has been on my list for awhile, but until now, I wasn't sure how to connect the points. While this route doesn't include the whole course which will eventually reach Julian, it covers the parts from San Pasqual Valley down to Del Mar. A big thank you to Kipley Fiebig for his detailed run report and helpful notes on the more adventurous parts of the route! My plan was to beat the heat with a 4am start - but after I parked and discovered my headlamp was burnt out, I waited until first light. The initial 10 miles of the trail are fast, winding through the San Pasqual Valley with a brief ascent up Raptor Ridge. The route then connects to the Lake Hodges trail network before diving into the Del Dios Gorge, west of the Hodges Dam. Next comes the Bing Crosby Open Space Preserve where the Santa Fe Valley Trail offers up the last two climbs of the route with a surprising number of switchbacks. The trail then joins a rural road for a brief stint before fording the San Diegutio River around mile 23. A sandy canyon trail comes next, which quickly replaces any dirt lost from the river crossing. A short residential road/golf course/trail run is where Fiebig's run report was critical! The clearly marked Coast to Crest trail then resumes after crossing El Camino Real, following the river through the salt marsh and down into Del Mar. A final road mile through the beach town ends at Seagrove Park and the Pacific Ocean. My total time for the 32.21 miles was 5:47:33 (a bit slower than I planned) and I did it unsupported, carrying my own food (gummy worms) and around 3 liters of water (should have brought 4 liters). Great route and a fun run!
Great job, Allen! Glad that my race report helped guide the way! It's such a fun route... as long as you don't mind a wee bit of adventure when connecting the broken parts of the trail.
Great Job, Allen! You and Kipley both made the route better by your experiences. I lost time trying to figure out how to connect portions of the trail that are now much better through your efforts! I plan to try again in September/October when the weather cools down.