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PCT Day 30 – The Infamous McDonald’s at Cajon Pass

Last updated Mar 24, 2020 | Published on May 22, 2017

I was on the the trail this morning shortly after 7:00 am. I ate the rest of my leftover pizza for breakfast. I’m not sure if this is the best breakfast to power me through the day today but it sure tasted good! I didn’t sleep well last night and I’m feeling more tired today – probably also because I pushed to hike so many miles yesterday.
I have a fabulous new angry blister in my left pinky toe that was hurting me yesterday. I was too tired to drain it last night, so I poked it with a safety pin this morning and it shot out white pus like a geyser. Gross. I hope it doesn’t get infected.

Last View of the Lake

After leaving camp this morning, we hiked up and out of the lake area over a hill heading towards Cajon Pass. It was a 13.8 mile hike to Cajon Pass, which we reached around 2:00 pm.

Heading into Cajon Pass on the PCT

Cajon Pass is really just an intersection of two freeways with some convenience stores, a McDonalds, and a Best Western. Trains and semi trucks rumble past at all hours of the night. But it’s walking distance to the PCT.

Yes there really is a PCT Trail Sign for the McDonald’s

Upon arriving at Cajon Pass we headed first to the McDonalds. I don’t normally eat at McDonalds but this one is legendary as it’s only 1/4 mile from the trail. All hikers stop here and gorge on cheap greasy food. I ordered a double quarter pounder with cheese (why don’t they just call it a half pounder???), large strawberry Fanta, large fries, and a chocolate sundae with caramel sauce. And I ate it all.

I want to eat all the food

Today Elise, Sevvy, Halfway and I ate lunch with an elderly Finnish gentleman who I’ve been leapfrogging the last couple of days. He doesn’t have a trail name yet – I mentioned once that I’d try to think of a trail name and ever since then he asks me about it whenever out paths cross. As we were eating lunch, he tried to drink his coffee but it was outrageously hot – too hot to drink. He made a few disappointed comments about it and even put some ice cream into his coffee to cool it down.

“How about Hot Coffee for a trail name?” I suggested. He wasn’t entirely convinced but was going to think about it. Anyway I felt absolved from trying to come up with a name.

OMG It’s A Pool!!!

We walked along the shoulder of the freeway off ramp to the Best Western, which is possibly one of the more dangerous activities I’ve undertaken so far on this trip.  Along the way we passed a vendor selling cherries for a church fundraiser so we bought a bunch.  We got two rooms at the hotel and spent the afternoon swimming in the pool and hanging out in the hot tub eating cherries. It was heavenly – even with the trucks rumbling by on the freeway and the constant trains.   It was one of my most relaxing afternoons on the trail so far.  We also ran into Captain Underpants, Sauce, and Ghandi at the hotel – another hiker reunion!

Eating a Fast Food Dinner on the Hotel Patio

After dinner we all piled into one room to watch one of the Bourne movies on TV.  It was fun to watch TV but also a little weird too.

I ducked out to call my mom to wish her a happy early Mother’s Day.  Happy Mother’s Day mom!

It’s hard to talk on the phone over trains

PCT 2017 Stats

PCT Day 30 – Saturday May 13
Cleghorn Picnic Area Mile 328.1 to Cajon Pass Mile 341.9

PCT Miles Hiked Today: 13.8
Feet Ascended Today: 1890
Feet Descended Today: 2335
Current Elevation: 3132
Steps: 43086

For more on my experience hiking the Pacific Crest Trail, visit my Pacific Crest Trail 2017 page:

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Hi, I'm Unicorn!

I am an avid hiker, traveler, and adventurer who is on the mission to explore hiking trails around the world.  I’m also obsessed with National Parks, long-distance trails and other outdoorsy things.

I hope to share this knowledge with you and inspire you to explore new hiking trails too!


  1. Kellz

    Sorry for spamming your notifications. I had some catching up to do and I like each post I’ve read to know where I’m up to, and because I like them of course 😊

    • Unicorn

      Ha! No worries. Glad to hear you are enjoying my blog 🙂

      • Kellz

        I love it! Giving me lots of tips and inspiration 😄👍

  2. Roy Draggoo

    McDonalds? What a treat! Got a message from Chelan. Her trail name is ‘Wasabi’. You may never see her but you are (at 15 miles a day) about 150-175 miles ahead of her. I’m enjoying your blog. What an adventure! I have backpacked over 2000 miles in Spain on long distance hikes. A lot of similarities between those and yours. You, however, have a much harder hike. Keep those feet healthy!


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