2009-05-06 59 24
Urmas finally got off his lazy bum and attempted to reach a hashpoint.
Location and planning
Having missed some trivial to reach hashpoints in Tallinn due to laziness, I jumped at the chance to reach this one.
The hashpoint was located inside a small area of forest between some grasslands and marshes. Looking at different online maps I found a small route not marked on Google Maps that would take me to about 300m of the hashpoint.
The marsh in question is named Orkjärve raba - The marsh of Orklake. Although instead of a grey/green-skinned monstrous humanoid, ork in estonian simply means a pointy stick.
Taking the the 17:25 train from Tallinn to Riisipere, I arrived at about 18:50. That gave me slightly less than 2 hours to reach the hashpoint and return to the train station. The last train to Tallinn left at 20:39.
At Riisipere I turned on my laptop and set it to log data from my gps. I didn't have any software for navigation, only the barebone linux gps daemon.
Almost everything went as planned, at first. At about 5 km from the hashpoint I encountered my first and luckily only hurdle. The asphalt road ended suddenly and turned into a fresh gravel road that was hard to ride on with a bike.
Turning off from the gravel road I entered a dirt path surrounded by a loose wall of trees and grasslands all around it. I had 2.7km to go. That was the last leg of the trip accessible to bicycles, but it was far easier to ride on than the gravel road.
After taking the last bend of the dirt road, I saw a manmade stream to my left. I had to turn left into the woods in order to reach the hash. To my surprise, exactly where I planned to turn into the woods (a row of trees touching the path from the right) there was a bridge crossing the stream.
Leaving my bicycle behind, I took my laptop in one hand (an eee, so weight was a trivial issue) and entered the woods. With the actual marshland not far away, the ground was quite squishy to walk on. I also had to cross another manmade stream, luckily that one was thinner and shallower.
Checking my computer from time to time, I realized that my course would miss the hashpoint. Sadly, I didn't have the time to correct myself because the alarm clock of my cellphone started ringing...
It signalled the halfway point between me arriving at Riisipere earlier and the last train leaving for Tallinn. Not wanting to miss it, I had to pack my laptop and start heading pack.
Nothing interesting happened on my way back. I reached Riisipere with ample time to board the train back.
Checking later from my gps log, the nearest I got to the hashpoint was about 100 meters.
telnet localhost 2947 >> riisipere.gps and cat riisipere.gps does not a navigational tool make.
Make more time to reach the hashpoint next time.
This is fun, go next time when possible.
A tracklog of the expedition is avaliable.  You will probably see a 3-second nag screen from my webhost, before the download begins.
The tracklog logs the route from Riisipere railway station and back again. The actual walking in the woods, looking for the hash part follows a convenient disconnect/reconnect. So searching for "telnet> Connection closed", should put you at the part where I entered the forest.
The gpsd format is detailed here. The part that deciphers the log can be found by searching for "Attempts to return a complete time/position" inside the document.