2010-03-07 53 -113
Metres away from a major highway, just south of Fort Saskatchewan.
Meghan braved the slush, snow and mud...
Looks to be in the field just beyond the fence between the 9th and 10th fencepost south of the electric post at the end of the range road.
Weather is looking good for the day, so an early spring bike ride may be in order.
 Getting ready
I took my as-yet unnamed donated bicycle out on Saturday for a much needed tune-up and overall spring cleaning. My old bike's brakes had finally given up last summer, despite being replaced (twice!) and Robyn graciously gave me the one she had picked up at a garage sale.
My old bike had a separate fender that I had bought several years prior to prevent the "skunk effect" (stripe up the back). Seeming how the snow was still melting and it was very sloppy out I decided to take that fender and put on the new bike.
After riding to the local 7-11 to re-fill the tires I deemed the bike geohashing-worthy and put it away for Sunday.
 To the Geohash
Getting home from church Sunday afternoon I changed into my favorite pair of paint-stained jeans and running shoes, gathered up my camera, purse, and a water-bottle and threw them into a backpack, and double checked the hash location to make sure I knew exactly where it was. I hopped on my bike at about 13:15 and took off on the short ride to the geohash.
About 5 minutes later I stopped and put on my mittens (special red Olympic mittens!). It may have been warm and sunny, but riding still created a chilly wind on the hands.
The ride was not a long one, and I took full advantage of the wonderful paved trails the city of Fort Saskatchewan has provided for its residents. Unfortunately for me, the paved paths to my destination were in a ditch. Along the highway. With all the melting snow. Needless to say, the ride was a wet one. Especially because my new bike is slightly larger than my old one. That fender I moved over? Not very effective.
The paved trail ended where suburbia did, and turned into a nice gravel road that led straight to my destination. The Alberta Asphalt Company had put up barriers across the road, though I couldn't see why. I hopped my bike over, and continued on my way.
I should have listened, because I almost lost my shoes in the mud.
I made it past the mud-pit of Doom, however, and continued as far as the bike would take me through the slush and melting snow. About 100 metres out I parked and walked the rest of the way.
 The Geohash
I sloshed through the slushy field and made it to the hashpoint at about 13:45. I celebrated my first (and long awaited) Geohash. I marked the hashpoint between the 9th and 10th fenceposts and proceeded to build a tiny snowman. The snow was not very plentiful and the wrong kind for effective rolling. So I froze my hands by making a stacking three snowballs on top of each other, and used some leftover crop stuffs (wheat? canola?) for arms.
I took photos and left, before my allergies could get worse. Darned snow mould!
 Getting home
The journey home was less adventurous than the journey there, because I somewhat know what to expect. I made it back to my bike and proceeded to walk it toward the mud-pit of Doom. I opted to go around it this time. Unfortunately that meant into waist-high snow that had not yet melted, into the ditch, which had plenty of melted snow.
After soaking my feet I made it back to the paved wonder of suburbia and made my way home. I arrived back to my house around 14:20. The perfect lazy Sunday afternoon hash!
 Lessons learned and ribbons earned
- Take allergy medicine before you leave the house.
- Wear something better than sneakers.
- All fenders are not made equal.
| Meghan earned the Snowman Geohash Achievement
| Meghan earned the Land geohash achievement