2009-04-19 49 12

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Sun 19 Apr 2009 in 49,12:
49.7094242, 12.3281098

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In a meadow overlooking the village of Spielberg, about 15km east of Weiden in der Oberpfalz.

[edit] dawidi with Tomcat and Hans

dawidi: We met at Regensburg's central station at 8:15 (8:00 was planned, but I was late) and got our bikes into the train for to Weiden. It was an ALEX, but surprisingly it was equipped with an extra spacious, carpeted bicycle compartment; and since there were no other bikes on the train, we had a very comfortable, ride. After about an hour, we arrived in Weiden and headed out to look for some geocaches first.

After four attempts (and only two finds) we were on our way east to the hash. Found two more caches while going uphill, at one of which I meant to jump over a little ditch and ripped out the side of my shoe by grazing a little tree stump :(

With an incredibly strong headwind, we cycled across the hilly landscape. We even had to keep pedaling on downhill slopes. But nevertheless, at around 12:45 we arrived at the coordinates. The latest aerial imagery had been correct - it was a very nice, lush green meadow, not a field. We stood in the wind at the hashpoint for a few minutes taking pictures, then went up to the lee of the forest to sit in the grass, eat some sweets and enjoy the view over the sunny landscape.

For an encore, we went further uphill into the forest to where the contour lines on the GPS said the peak was (thoroughly unspectacular location, boo) and on the way back down, I climbed a raised hide at the edge of the forest. Sadly, that would have to suffice in terms of "aerial photography" today, because it was far too windy to launch my paraplane.

We cycled back a small part of the way (now downhill and with tailwind), then turned onto the Bocklweg, a (very well paved!) cycle route on a former railroad track, and followed it northeast to Floss, where we sat down for a rather late lunch at a restaurant. Coasting further downhill and to the east, we stopped by a couple more geocaches along the way. One time, the coordinates pointed to a narrow bridge going over a stream, where an old man stood and started talking to everyone who got near him, with his topics ranging from WWII memories to long-term (say, 2000 years) interest calculations. He didn't quite understand our explanation of geocaching, though.

We ended up taking a shortcut back south to Weiden instead of another detour for a cache, so we arrived an hour before our train would leave and spent it on cakes and coffee (respectively a cold chocolate with ice) in the town center.

The train ride back to Regensburg was not as relaxed - the train was full of students apparently going back (?) to Munich after the Easter holidays, and they of course crowded the entire bicycle compartment as well, forcing us to stand in the middle of the compartment holding our bikes for the entire ride... We split up near my home shortly after 20:00.

RGB panorama from the hashpoint
IR panorama from the hashpoint