2010-04-24 35 -81

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Sat 24 Apr 2010 in 35,-81:
35.3983182, -81.2645639

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[edit] Location

First expedition for Art and the first expedition in Gastonia, North Carolina

[edit] Participants

Art was the only attendee.

[edit] Plans

The plan is to park to the side of Landers Chapel Rd. and walk the ~200 meters to the hashpoint.

Radio communications are available on FRS channel 6

[edit] Expedition

Earlier this week, I was out walking my dog when I saw a man pull up in a very nice car that clearly did not belong in my lower middle class neighborhood. When he got out of his car and began following me down the nearby walking trail, I became suspicious. There were no houses down this trail and not even any privately owned property. There was no exit and the man was clearly not dressed for exercise. So I turned and confronted him. After a bit of questioning, he relinquished and told me that he was playing a game called "geocaching." Intrigued, I researched geocaching and soon came across geohashing. I thought it sounded like fun and resolved to make that very first Saturday meetup.

On 4/24, the hashpoint was located in a patch of woods not too far from my house. I left the house early and found my first and second geocaches (completely different story) before driving to the geohash. As I pulled up to the property, my heart sank as I saw an official looking placard nailed to a post. A no trespassing sign for sure. I got out to have a look. The placard said nothing of trespass, but did forbid hunting and fishing on the property. If my Halo skills are any indicator of my prowess with an actual weapon, then surely any woodland creatures would be safe even if I had a weapon on me.

As the hashpoint was located about 50 meters into the woods, which were much more dense than the satellite picture suggested, I opted to walk along the field and then cut in rather than the original plan which was to follow what appeared to be a path (it wasn't). After crossing a small bog and climbing an embankment, I was getting close to the hashpoint. But due to it being my first day navigating with this GPS and it not having a handy little pointer, just the current coordinates, I bumbled around for awhile. My phone then beeped, informing me that I did not have enough power to continue broadcasting my coordinates back to my GPS service. Fortunately, it continued to receive signals long enough for me to find the exact spot. As I broke some sticks to spell out XKCD, the phone died entirely and I consequently did not get a photo.

Hopefully the tracklog below will be sufficient proof of both the expedition and the success.

[edit] Tracklog

http://www.instamapper.com/trk?key=5766456902381905229

The tracklog was deactivated prematurely because my Blackberry (running the GPS app) got too low on battery to continue sending information. (The app does not store information, but broadcasts it to Instamapper's server directly). However, you can see from the tracklog that at 4:08 PM I was within 6 meters of the hashpoint.

TL 2010-04-24 35 -81.png

[edit] Achievements Earned

Landgeohash.png
Art earned the Land geohash achievement
by reaching the (35, -81) geohash on 2010-04-24.
Virgin-graticule.png
Art earned the Virgin Graticule Achievement
by being the first to reach any hashpoint in the (35, -81) graticule, here, on 2010-04-24.

[edit] Photos