2008-10-17 43 -79

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Fri 17 Oct 2008 in 43,-79:
43.2644944, -79.7624852

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Visiting Toronto for a physics conference, thepiguy wasn't about to let a little bit of water stop him from making a geohashing expedition; even if it was doomed to fail from the start.


Mode of Transportation Distance (km) Cost
Total 146km $26
Subway 2km $2.75
Go Bus 59km $9.00
#10 B-Line 7km $2.50
#11 Parkdale 5km Transfer
#11 Parkdale 5km Transfer
#10 B-Line 7km Transfer
Go Bus 59km $9.00
Subway 2km $2.75


Since the DOW doesn't open until 9:30 in Toronto, I was forced to actually attend the mornings presentations. It was midway through a presentation on implementing a hight purity germanium gamma ray detector that the coordinates finally appeared.

At first it looked like they were right on the shore of lake Ontario in Hamilton. But as soon as I started to zoom in, I realized that they were 500m off shore. Having left my raft back in Vancouver, there was no way to actually make it to the coordinate. But 500m was more than good enough for an expedition!

I left the hotel around 10:30 and boarded the subway towards Union Station (Public transportation vehicle #1). It was only a few stops to the station, and I probably could have walked, but the subway is just so cool! It's like... a real subway! None of this above-ground-pretending-to-be-a-subway skytrain business we have in Vancouver. It's like New York or something!

Once I got to Union station (and once I got my excitement back under control: it's like a real train station!) I went to buy a ticket for what I thought was a train to Hamilton. However, my Go Train turned out to be a Go Bus. Don't get me wrong, it was still painted green and everything, but I really wanted to ride a train (Like, a real train! Ok, I'll stop that). As it turns out, the trains only run part way, and not at all hours. If I had figured this out sooner, I probably could have taken a train part way, and the bus the rest of the way. Only slightly disappointed, I hopped on board and took a seat (Public transportation vehicle #2).

It was an hour trip into Hamilton. I mostly just listened to music and took a few blurry pictures out the window. When I go to the Hamilton Go Station, I found a map of the local transit system and planned out the rest of my route. It took a while, there were a lot of tricks to figure out; the difference between the number 10 and the number 10A, the fact that one of the lines only ran during the summer, and also the problem of actually finding my back to the bus station so I could get back to Toronto.

I took the number 10 B-line across town ((Public transportation vehicle #3) and caught the number 11 north towards the lake (Public transportation vehicle #4). I misjudged the stop intervals on the second bus, and got off ridiculously early. I ended up having to walk along over a kilometer of treacherous highway, while all along passing more bus stops.

I made it to the shore and started to walk along the beach while watching the distance reading on the gps. At one point close to where I was aiming for, the distance dropped down to .49km before returning to .50km. Figuring it was the best I could do, I to a break, ate some Nibs and wrote in the sand.

Not close enough to claim a successful geohash, but more than close enough for an afternoon of adventure!

On my way back, I found a much closer bus stop and borrowed the internet from an unsecure wireless network by the name of "Linksys" to check the bus schedule. I would have updated the wiki, but the bus arrived only a few minutes later (Public transportation vehicle #5).

I managed to sneak back on the number 10 (Public transportation vehicle #6) with only 5 minutes left on my transfer and found my way back to the bus station. I just missed the 2:30 back to Toronto, but got a good seat on the 3 o'clock (Public transportation vehicle #7). Once in Toronto I took the subway back to the hotel (Public transportation vehicle #8) and got some dinner in time to catch that day keynote speaker.