I wanted to share with you an aerial shot of where I am conducting the two classes for the San Clemente Border Patrol Checkpoint. This shot was made by Patrol Agent Adam Rainoff using his drone. In addition to working as a Border Patrol Agent, Adam is a professional photographer. He attended our first class at the checkpoint.
To orient you, this shot was made facing north. In the center of the frame is I-5 with traffic slowed as cars go through the checkpoint. Just north and to the right of the checkpoint is a red roofed building that backs up to the hillside. It contains the classroom.
On the extreme left of the picture is the old California Coast Highway, Route 101. Next are the railroad tracks used by Amtrak and freight trains.
The checkpoint borders US Marine Base Camp Pendleton. The road to the East of the Checkpoint is the original El Camino Real (the Royal Road or King’s Highway) which was the road used by the Spanish beginning in 1683 to reach Missions as far north as Sonoma.
To get to the checkpoint one has to go north on I-5. Miss the high speed landing and you have to go up to the next exit turn around, go south to the exit below the checkpoint and then get back on I-5 northbound. You learn very quickly how to do the high speed landing since cars are not allowed in the truck lane.